Wee Willie Winkie runs through the town.

Up stairs and down stairs in his night-gown.

Tapping at the window, crying at the lock,

“Are the children in their bed? It’s past ten o’clock?”


Hey, Willie Winkie! Are you coming in?

The cat is singing purring sounds to the sleeping hen.

The dog is spread out on the floor and doesn’t give a cheep,

But here’s a wakeful little boy who will not fall asleep!


Anything but sleep, you rogue, glowering like the moon,

Rattling in an iron jug with an iron spoon.

Rumbling, tumbling round about, crowing like a cock,

Shrieking like I don’t know what, waking sleeping folk.


Hey, Willie Winkie! The child’s in a creel!

Wriggling from everyone’s knee like an eel,

Tugging at the cat’s ear and confusing all her thrums

Hey, Willie Winkie! See, there he comes!


Weary is the mother who has a dusty child.

A small short little child, who can’t run on his own,

Who always battles sleep before he’ll close an eye

But a kiss from his rosy lips gives strength anew to me.


Download the words to Wee Willie Winkie.