"It was a dark and stormy night
The brigands they sat in their cave
The chief of the brigands arose, and he said
"Antonio, tell us a storio!"
And this is what he said.
"It was a dark and stormy night..."
Well, you get the idea. This could go on for some time. It's clearly a fairly widespread meme; the Ahlbergs wrote a book about it, for example.
M has just noticed that Googling for the version I learnt yields no results, though there's an instructive comment thread here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/today/liste
So. Do you remember this from your childhood? What words did you use? Where were you, geographically, at the time?
I have noted before that despite the work of the Opies, the rhymes remembered and told by children (in playgrounds and around campfires) are not, by and large, well documented as a tradition.