Letter: The bear truth of the matter

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The Independent Online
FIAMMETTA ROCCO gives the impression, in her piece on Anne Fine ('Gladly, my cross- eyed bear' Review, June 27) that those words are an invention of the novelist.

It is not only the title of one of the parts of John Hopkins' excellent television drama, Talking to a Stranger, but belongs to the long tradition, among children, of misinterpreting the dreary words they used to sing in church. Remember 'baby cheeses' or 'little orgies' (little Lord Jesus)? For many years I thought that Good King Wences last looked out on the feast of Stephen; I used to wonder what he had been doing meanwhile.

Doraine Potts

Headington, Oxford

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