Tag Archives: children rhyme

“Pique et pique et tout les grammes…” French children’s rhyme

Pique et pique et tout les grammes
Bora bora ratatam
Ans, vam, dram
Pique et pique et tout les grammes 

This is the French equivalent of “eeny meeny miney mo,” a rhyme used to pick a person for something, like who will be “it” in a game of tag, for example. It’s said in the same tune/rhythm as the American version. My informant went to elementary school in Paris, France, and this was done every recess. To do it, everyone gets in a circle and puts their foot in the middle. Whoever’s in charge taps each foot one at a time while everyone chants. On the last word, whoever’s foot she’s pointing to is “it.”

When I asked my informant what it meant, she shrugged, “I’m pretty sure it’s just nonsense. People say it differently, like I recently talked to another French girl who knew it as, “piquee piquee colegram, bour et bour et rata tam, ans vam dram piquee piquee colegram.” That doesn’t mean anything either. It’s exactly like eeny meeny miney mo, except no one knows how to spell it.”