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Kulture Korner/Robert Service Poem circa1949
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JoeK    Posted 09-12-2002 at 19:59:28       [Reply]  [No Email]
The Three Bares

Ma tried to wash her garden slacks but couldn't get 'em clean
And so she thought she'd soak 'em in a bucket o' benzine.
It worked all right. She wrung 'em out then wondered what she'd do
With all that bucket load of high explosive residue.
She knew that it was dangerous to scatter it around,
For Grandpa liked to throw his lighted matches on the ground.
Somehow she didn't dare to pour it down the kitchen sink,
And what the heck to do with it, poor Ma jest couldn't think.
Then Nature seemed to give the clue, as down the garden lot
She spied the edifice that graced a solitary spot,
Their Palace of Necessity, the family joy and pride,
Enshrined in morning-glory vine, with graded seats inside;
Jest like that cabin Goldylocks found occupied by three,
But in this case B-E-A-R was spelt B-A-R-E----
A tiny seat for Baby Bare, a medium for Ma,
A full-sized section sacred to the Bare of Grandpapa.
Well, Ma was mighty glad to get that worry off her mind,
And hefting up the bucket so combustibly inclined,
She hurried down the garden to that refuge so discreet,
And dumped the liquid menace safely through the centre seat.
Next morning old Grandpa arose; he made a hearty meal,
And sniffed the air and said: `By Gosh! how full of beans I feel.
Darned if I ain't as fresh as paint; my joy will be complete
With jest a quiet session on the usual morning seat;
To smoke me pipe an' meditate, an' maybe write a pome,
For that's the time when bits o' rhyme gits jiggin' in me dome.'
He sat down on that special seat slicked shiny by his age,
And looking like Walt Whitman, jest a silver-whiskered sage,
He filled his corn-cob to the brim and tapped it snugly down,
And chuckled: `Of a perfect day I reckon this the crown.'
He lit the weed, it soothed his need, it was so soft and sweet:
And then he dropped the lighted match clean through the middle seat.
His little grand-child Rosyleen cried from the kichen door:
`Oh, Ma, come quick; there's sompin wrong; I heared a dreffel roar;
Oh, Ma, I see a sheet of flame; it's rising high and higher...
Oh, Mummy dear, I sadly fear our comfort-cot's caught fire.'
Poor Ma was thrilled with horror at them words o' Rosyleen.
She thought of Grandpa's matches and that bucket of benzine;
So down the garden geared on high, she ran with all her power,
For regular was Grandpa, and she knew it was his hour.
Then graspin' gaspin' Rosyleen she peered into the fire,
A roarin' soarin' furnace now, perchance old Grandpa's pyre....
But as them twain expressed their pain they heard a hearty cheer----
Behold the old rapscallion squattinn' in the duck pond near,
His silver whiskers singed away, a gosh-almighty wreck,

Wi' half a yard o' toilet seat entwined about his neck....
He cried: `Say, folks, oh, did ye hear the big blow-out I made?
It scared me stiff-I hope you-un was not to much afraid?
But now I best be crawlin' out o' this dog-gasted wet....
For what I aim to figger out is----WHAT THE HECK I ET?'

Bob /Ont.    Posted 09-12-2002 at 20:59:07       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Joe that poem is funney but my aunt Mary told us of a similar thing happening to her neighbour 40 yrs ago. He was painting and cleaned up the brushes and dumped a lesser amount of combustables down the two holer. Later as he sat their pondering life and smoking his pipe he got quite a suprize as the disguarded match lite the paint thinners. My aunt heard the boom and looked out the window to see him hiking to the house with his pants around his ancles.
Later Bob

JoeK....and some James Whitcome Riley    Posted 09-12-2002 at 20:05:56       [Reply]  [No Email]
The Passing of the Backhouse
by James Whitcomb Riley

When memory keeps me company and moves to smile or tears,
A weather-beaten object looms through the mist of years,
Behind the house and barn it stood, a half a mile or more,
And hurrying feet a path had made, straight to its swinging door.
Its architecture was a type of simple classic art,
But in the tragedy of life it played a leading part.
And oft the passing traveler drove slow and heaved a sigh,
To see the modest hired girl slip out with glances shy.

We had our posey garden that the women loved so well;
I loved it too, but better still I loved the stronger smell
That filled the evening breezes so full of homely cheer,
And told the night-o'ertaken tramp that human life was near.
On lazy August afternoons it made a little bower
Delightful, where my grandsirer sat and whiled away an hour.
For there the summer mornings, its very cares entwined,
And berry bushes reddened in the streaming soil behind.

All day fat spiders spun their webs to catch the buzzing flies
That flitted to and from the house, where Ma was baking pies;
And once a swarm of hornets bold had built their palace there,
And stung my unsuspecting Aunt -- I must not tell you where.
My father took a flaming pole -- that was a happy day --
He nearly burned the building up, but the hornets left to stay.
When summer bloom began to fade and winter to carouse,
We banked the little building with a heap of hemlock boughs.

But when the crust is on the snow and sullen skies were gray,
Inside the building was no place where one could wish to stay.
We did our duties promptly, there one purpose swayed the mind;
We tarried not, nor lingered long, on what we left behind.
The torture of the icy seat would make a Spartan sob,
For needs must scrape the flesh with a lacerating cob,
That from a frost-encrusted nail suspended from a string --
My father was a frugal man and wasted not a thing.

When Grandpa had to "go out back" and make his morning call,
We'd bundle up the dear old man with a muffler and a shawl.
I knew the hole on which he sat -- 'twas padded all around,
And once I tried to sit there -- 'twas all too wide I found,
My loins were all too little, and I jack-knifed there to stay,
They had to come and get me out, or I'd have passed away,
My father said ambition was a thing that boys should shun,
And I just used the children's hole 'til childhood days were done.

And still I marvel at the craft that cut those holes so true,
The baby's hole, and the slender hole that fitted Sister Sue,
That dear old country landmark; I tramped around a bit,
And in the lap of luxury my lot has been to sit,
But ere I die I'll eat the fruits of trees I robbed of yore,
Then seek the shanty where my name is carved upon the door.
I ween that old familiar smell will soothe my jaded soul,
I'm now a man, but none the less I'll try the children's hole.

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