"Willem and Saskia are sitting in a tree..."
Translation:Willem en Saskia zitten in een boom...
I would like to help, but what exactly is the English version you are referring to?
If Willem had just kept his finger in that hole in the dike they could have been sitting on the ground instead.
I don't really understand how one can "zit in een boom" unless the tree is hollow... Is that what it means?
Yes as Adam said this is from an American children's song, or more descriptively a children's teasing chant. It goes (using the names given here)
Willem and Saskia sitting in a tree
K - I - S - S - I - N - G
First comes love
Then comes marriage
Then comes the baby in the baby carriage.
That's the official version, although what I had learned for the last line would have been Then comes Saskia with the baby carriage. This video shows it. It also appears to have another part but I can't really understand it over the girls screaming. I don't think I have ever heard another part, but that was so long ago.
But in answer to your question, in American English if you climb a tree and sit on the branches among the leaves, whether you are a person or a cat, you are said to be in the tree not on the tree.
Ok, this ( if you climb a tree and sit on the branches among the leaves, whether you are a person or a cat, you are said to be in the tree not on the tree.) clarifies what I did not really understand. I guess Dutch "in een boom" has the same meaning.
Thank you (and Adam, too)
So, does this mean that the same expression exists in Dutch? I. e. would one rather say "in een boom zitten" instead of "op een boom zitten"?