Friday, December 31, 2010

Poetry Friday: Common Cold

At my house, we're ringing out the old year with sniffles and sneezes, hacking coughs and chest-hardened wheezes. I'm in rhyming agreement with dear old Ogden.

I hope you'll stop over at Carol's Corner for more Poetry Friday where folks are ringing in the new year with something other than a tissue.

Common Cold
by Ogden Nash

Go hang yourself, you old M.D.!
You shall not sneer at me.
Pick up your hat and stethoscope,
Go wash your mouth with laundry soap;
I contemplate a joy exquisite
I'm not paying you for your visit.
I did not call you to be told
My malady is a common cold.

By pounding brow and swollen lip;
By fever's hot and scaly grip;
By those two red redundant eyes
That weep like woeful April skies;
By racking snuffle, snort, and sniff;
By handkerchief after handkerchief;
This cold you wave away as naught
Is the damnedest cold man ever caught!

Give ear, you scientific fossil!
Here is the genuine Cold Colossal;
The Cold of which researchers dream,
The Perfect Cold, the Cold Supreme.
This honored system humbly holds
The Super-cold to end all colds;
The Cold Crusading for Democracy;
The F├╝hrer of the Streptococcracy.

Bacilli swarm within my portals
Such as were ne'er conceived by mortals,
But bred by scientists wise and hoary
In some Olympic laboratory;
Bacteria as large as mice,
With feet of fire and heads of ice
Who never interrupt for slumber
Their stamping elephantine rumba.

A common cold, gadzooks, forsooth!
Ah, yes. And Lincoln was jostled by Booth;
Don Juan was a budding gallant,
And Shakespeare's plays show signs of talent;
The Arctic winter is fairly coolish,
And your diagnosis is fairly foolish.
Oh what a derision history holds
For the man who belittled the Cold of Colds!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Poetry Friday: Christmas at Mole End

I hope you are finding time to slow down, enjoy a cup of hot chocolate, and delight in this Christmas season.

My crew will be in town in a few days, so this may be my last post of the year. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

Here is a wonderful Christmas song from The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame, sung by "a group of little field-mice" who "stood in a semi-circle, red worsted comforters round their throats, their forepaws thrust deep into their pockets, their feet dancing for warmth. "

Villagers all, this frosty tide,
Let your doors swing open wide,
Though wind may follow, and snow beside,
Yet draw us in by your fire to bide;
Joy shall be yours in the morning!

Here we stand in the cold and the sleet,
Blowing fingers and stamping feet,
Come from far away you to greet--
You by the fire and we in the street--
Bidding you joy in the morning!

For ere one half of the night was gone,
Sudden a star had led us on,
Raining bliss and benison--
Bliss tomorrow and more anon,
Joy for every morning!

Goodman Joseph toiled through the snow--
Saw the star o'er the stable low;
Mary she might not further go--
Welcome thatch, and litter below!
Joy was hers in the morning!

And when they heard the angels tell
"Who were the first to cry Nowell?
Animals all, as it befell,
In the stable where they did dwell!"
Joy shall be theirs in the morning!

More Poetry Friday here, at the Poetry Farm.

May joy be yours now and "in the morning."

Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Random Thoughts

Yesterday I sat on my glasses. Really sat on them, unknowing, the entire time I laced my tennis shoes. It certainly makes one see things differently. Not always a bad thing, except when you can't focus.

I never thought I'd grow up to be a traveling salesman. Okay, salesperson. No, saleswoman? Definitely sounds strange. In the last six weeks, I have logged almost 1,500 miles. I love my job. I love being in schools. I love the librarians and reading specialists I meet and get to know. I love the books and knowing what's being published. But that's a lot of miles. I'm tired right now, and so glad for the coming break and time to sort and rethink some scheduling issues. All that traveling leaves little time for writing. I've managed to squeeze some in, but I have some projects before me that are going to require some consistency. New Year's Resolutions are already in progress!

I love hats. I would have been a good hat-wearing lady in the fifties, or the forties.

I lost my gloves last week. Left them at one of my schools, I think. It's too cold to go outside, but if I were going, I'd wear those lost gloves.

Random, yes, I know. But you were forewarned.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Poetry Friday: Brrrr!!!

It's cold here in the deep South. No snow. No ice. Just cold, the kind we don't usually see until late January. It makes me want to wrap up in a blanket in front of a fire with a cup of hot tea and a good book.

Yesterday, I did just that. I've been reading Buffalo Soldiers by Tom Willard. He does a great job of presenting the big picture of life in the Tenth Cavalry, while weaving the story of one black soldier from enlistment to retirement. A good winter read.

It's poetry Friday and I've been absent for a while. Maybe I'll turn over a new leaf, make a new resolution, or just get more organized in the coming new year. We'll see.

Here is a poem I wrote a few years back. The cold reminded me of it.

Still, She Cannot Write the Spring

It was a cold Christmas
That chilled the roots and left no promise
Against the hard consonants of November.
A songless sparrow picks lichen
From trees standing bare in the wind
And listens with her for a touch
Of sunlight, for words to melt the icy ground,
To bear the burden of a crocus
Rising through frozen earth.

Innisfree Poetry Journal, 2006

More Poetry Friday here with Jama.