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Whimsy 
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Post Whimsy
It seems that everyone (even really serious poets, I'll bet) likes whimsical, silly stuff a la Ogden Nash. So this thread is for that vein of poetry.

DWill



Fri Aug 15, 2008 7:18 am
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One more post ought to do it.

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I must stress that this is posted - Tongue-in-Cheek!!!

A Song of Patriotic Prejudice

You know, it's a curious thing, I don't know if you've ever thought of this, but England hasn't really got a national song, you know, just for England; there's plenty for Great Britain. That's quite different. You have to be very careful how you use these terms, too. The rule is: if we've done anything good, it's "another triumph for Great Britain" and if we haven't, it's "England loses again". Have you noticed that?
All the others, they've got songs about their countries, you know, the Scots, like "Scotland for aye" (or for "me" as it should more properly be). And the Welsh and the Irish have got songs saying how marvelous they are and making rude remarks about the English in their own languages. In the case of the Welsh I think this is the pot calling the saucepan "bach".
What English national song have we got? "Jerusalem" . . . "There'll always be an England". Well, that's not saying much, is it? I mean, there'll always be a North Pole, if some dangerous clown doesn't go and melt it.
I think that the reason for this is that in the old days - you know, the good old days when I was a boy - people didn't, we didn't bother in England about nationalism. I mean, nationalism was on its way out. We'd got pretty well everything we wanted and we didn't go around saying how marvelous we were - everybody knew that - any more than we bothered to put our names on our stamps. I mean, there's only two kinds of stamps: English stamps in sets at the beginning of the album, and foreign stamps all mixed at the other end. Any gibbon could tell you that.
But nowadays nationalism is on the up and up and everybody has a national song but us. The Americans have national songs, like "My country 'tis of thee", which they sing to the tune of "God save the Queen", I may say, and which together with their long range forecasting of our weather I find hard to forgive. Yes, and the Germans - and whatever you say about the Germans (and who doesn't) - what a marvelous song that was: "German, German overalls". Now there's a song.
Well, the moment has come, and none too soon; we have a song here which, I think, fills this long-felt want and I hope that all true-born English men and women in our audience will join in the last chorus. And if you don't have the good fortune to be English true-born, or a man, or a woman, I hope you'll join in as an ordinary mark of simple decent respect. This song starts with, I think, a very typical English understatement.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The English, the English, the English are best
I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest.

The rottenest bits of these islands of ours
We've left in the hands of three unfriendly powers
Examine the Irishman, Welshman or Scot
You'll find he's a stinker, as likely as not.

Och aye, awa' wi' yon Edinburgh Festival

The Scotsman is mean, as we're all well aware
And bony and blotchy and covered with hair
He eats salty porridge, he works all the day
And he hasn't got bishops to show him the way!

The English, the English, the English are best
I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest.

Ah hit me old mother over the head with a shillelagh

The Irishman now out contempt is beneath
He sleeps in his boots and he lies through his teeth
He blows up policemen, or so I have heard
And blames it on Cromwell and William the Third!

The English are noble, the English are nice,
And worth any other at double the price

Ah, iechyd da

The Welshman's dishonest and cheats when he can
And little and dark, more like monkey than man
He works underground with a lamp in his hat
And he sings far too loud, far too often, and flat!

And crossing the Channel, one cannot say much
Of French and the Spanish, the Danish or Dutch
The Germans are German, the Russians are red,
And the Greeks and Italians eat garlic in bed!

The English are moral, the English are good
And clever and modest and misunderstood.

And all the world over, each nation's the same
They've simply no notion of playing the game
They argue with umpires, they cheer when they've won
And they practice beforehand which ruins the fun!

The English, the English, the English are best
So up with the English and down with the rest.

It's not that they're wicked or natuarally bad
It's knowing they're foreign that makes them so mad!

For the English are all that a nation should be,
And the flower of the English are Donald (Michael)
Donald (Michael) and Me!


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Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:08 pm
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Post 
Oh, Penelope,

Who penned this ditty? And is there a tune to sing it to? It's quite good, you know. I didn't get name thing in the last two lines, probably a "Yank thing" on my part.

DWill



Fri Aug 15, 2008 7:43 pm
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One more post ought to do it.

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Post 
DWill - It is Flanders and Swann:-

Here you are:-

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=FP2snDJDji8


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He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world is mad....

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Sat Aug 16, 2008 5:53 am
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One more post ought to do it.

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Post 
Oh, just one more please:- then I promise I won't post any more Flanders and Swann - (I might go on to Noel Coward!).

But this just follows on so nicely from the 'English are Best' song.

And...I have to say....I think these song lyrics....are poetry!!!

Quote:
But I did get away with one mild double
entendre, in a song celebrating the occasion when our gallant British Navy annexed
Rockall - that lump of rock in the Atlantic. It was really more of a single
entendre, because the lyric looked innocent enough written down, but when you sung
it it was considered daringly near the bone then. Nowadays, I don't think anyone'd
raise an eyebrow. Anyway, judge for yourselves.

The fleet set sail for Rockall,
Rockall,
Rockall,
To free the isle of Rockall,
From fear of foreign foe.
We sped across the planet,
To find this lump of granite,
One rather startled Gannet;
In fact, we found Rockall.

So, praise the brave Bell-bottoms,
Bottoms,
Bottoms,
Who saw Britannia's Peril,
And answered to her call,
Though we're thrown out of Malta,
Though Spain should take Gibraltar,
Why should we flinch or falter,
When England's got Rockall.

MF: And Donald still hasn't got the point.


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Only those become weary of angling who bring nothing to it but the idea of catching fish.

He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world is mad....

Rafael Sabatini


Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:07 am
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So many e-books my reader is overweight!


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Post A Passion for Poetry
We in Sussex 'ave a Pome that suits us :-

An' you can Push,
An' you can shove
But a Sussex Pig
'E won't be Druv.



Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:08 am
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Post 
Gloucestershire Old Spots can be awkward too!!! :D


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Only those become weary of angling who bring nothing to it but the idea of catching fish.

He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world is mad....

Rafael Sabatini


Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:20 am
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This thread seems to have lain dormant for a while, but I think it's a good place to put this anonymous eighteenth century piece of light verse:

London Bells

Gay go up, and gay go down,
To ring the bells of London town.

Bull's eyes and targets,
Say the bells of St Marg'ret's.

Brickbats and tiles,
Say the bells of St Giles'.

Halfpence and farthings
Say the bells of St Martin's.

Oranges and lemons,
Say the bells of St Clement's.

Pancakes and fritters,
Say the bells of St. Peter's.

Two sticks and an apple,
Say the bells at Whitechapel.

Old Father Baldpate,
Say the slow bells at Aldgate.

Maids in white aprons,
Say the bells of St Cath'rine's.

Pokers and tongs,
Say the bells at St John's.

Kettles and pans,
Say the bells at St Ann's.

You owe me ten shillings,
Say the bells at St Helen's.

When will you pay me?
Say the bells at Old Bailey.

When I grow rich,
Say the bells at Fleetditch.

When will that be?
Say the bells at Stepney.

I am sure I don't know,
Says the great bell at Bow.

When I am old,
Say the bells at St Paul's.

Here comes a candle to light you to bed,
And here comes a chopper to chop off your head.


It must have been a children's poem, written to familiarise 'em with the names of London landmarks. The poet's use of mondegreen makes this so easy to memorise and really fun to read aloud.



Tue Oct 07, 2008 2:51 am
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Post 
This thread seems to have lain dormant for a while, but I think it's a good place to put this anonymous eighteenth century piece of light verse:

London Bells

Gay go up, and gay go down,
To ring the bells of London town.

Bull's eyes and targets,
Say the bells of St Marg'ret's.

Brickbats and tiles,
Say the bells of St Giles'.

Halfpence and farthings
Say the bells of St Martin's.

Oranges and lemons,
Say the bells of St Clement's.

Pancakes and fritters,
Say the bells of St. Peter's.

Two sticks and an apple,
Say the bells at Whitechapel.

Old Father Baldpate,
Say the slow bells at Aldgate.

Maids in white aprons,
Say the bells of St Cath'rine's.

Pokers and tongs,
Say the bells at St John's.

Kettles and pans,
Say the bells at St Ann's.

You owe me ten shillings,
Say the bells at St Helen's.

When will you pay me?
Say the bells at Old Bailey.

When I grow rich,
Say the bells at Fleetditch.

When will that be?
Say the bells at Stepney.

I am sure I don't know,
Says the great bell at Bow.

When I am old,
Say the bells at St Paul's.

Here comes a candle to light you to bed,
And here comes a chopper to chop off your head.


It must have been a children's poem, written to familiarise 'em with the names of London landmarks. The poet's use of mondegreen makes this so easy to memorise and really fun to read aloud.



Tue Oct 07, 2008 2:52 am
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Whimsy has been quiet too long. Here is a poem I learned when I got married, it came with the man and my children loved it so.

The Purple Cow
by Gelett Burgess

I never saw a Purple Cow,
--I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
--I'd rather see than be one.


And written 5 years later:

Ah, yes! I wrote the "Purple Cow" --
--I'm Sorry, now, I Wrote it!
But I can Tell you, Anyhow,
--I'll Kill you if you Quote it!



Sat Nov 01, 2008 4:59 pm
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Saffron, you married a poet!(':clap:')



Sun Nov 02, 2008 1:33 am
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Rose Kolarich wrote:
Saffron, you married a poet!(':clap:')


Oh, if only! If I were bolder and more confident, I'd say he married the poet and would have none of it and so, we aren't.



Sun Nov 02, 2008 3:11 am
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Post 
Quote:
The Purple Cow
by Gelett Burgess

I never saw a Purple Cow,
--I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
--I'd rather see than be one



My mom used to quote that one when I was young...and this one as well. I did not know where they came from. She is 77 and can still quote all kinds of poetry.


On Digital Extremities


I'd Rather have Fingers than Toes;
I'd Rather have Ears than a Nose;
And As for my Hair,
I'm Glad it's All There;
I'll be Awfully Sad, when it Goes!



Wed Dec 17, 2008 1:31 pm
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realiz wrote:
Quote:

On Digital Extremities


It's another poem by Gelett Burgess (1866-1951).



Thu Dec 18, 2008 7:00 am
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Post 
Saffron wrote:
Whimsy has been quiet too long.


Maybe not so whimsical as spooky.



Windy Nights

Whenever the moon and stars are set,
Whenever the wind is high,
All night long in the dark and wet,
A man goes riding by.
Late in the night when the fires are out,
Why does he gallop and gallop about?

Whenever the trees are crying aloud,
And ships are tossed at sea,
By, on the highway, low and loud,
By at the gallop goes he.
By at the gallop he goes, and then
By he comes back at the gallop again.

Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)


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Thu Dec 18, 2008 11:28 am
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