Camping

I wanted to go camping ‘cos I thought it would be nice.
I organized a tent, some bottled water and some ice.
I had such lovely thoughts about the fun that would transpire
As I relaxed in nature, sitting cozy by a fire.

The first mistake I made, though, was I didn’t bring a bed.
I’d hoped that leaves and twigs would help me rest my weary head.
So as you can foresee, I had no chance to rest my eyes,
But that was for the best, ‘cos that was not my sole surprise.

I’d packed some crisps, some crackers, jerkied beef and juicy pears.
It was to my dismay I learned that those attracted bears!
At just past three AM, you would have seen me start to shake,
I ran with flailing arms and dove head-first into the lake.

Now here’s the third dilemma I encountered on my trip:
I thought the lake would be a clever bear-deterring dip.
However, it was winter, so the lake was topped with ice,
And plunging into that was neither smart nor very nice.

At this point I was shaking out of fear and very wet.
And really, hypothermia was quite a valid threat.
I wrapped myself in blankets, and I made some tea to sip,
And then, at last, decided I would quit my camping trip.

So feeling very sorry, very cold, and not real bright,
I packed up all the tent pegs in the middle of the night.
I took one final look at where I’d camped and nearly died,
Took two steps up the back-door stairs and then I went inside.

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Image from Deposit Photos © Tetiana_Svirska 2015

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Obfuscation

I’m starting a new conversation
‘Bout jargon, big words, obfuscation.
When words are too long
All reason goes wrong—
A literature-linked situation.

Instead, we’ll eschew: complex grammar;
Espousing long words with much clamor;
Linguistic confetti;
Phonemic spaghetti,
Emitted sans pause or a stammer.

I’m fighting for simplification
Of literature and oration.
Of syllable cuts
For lexical nuts
Enamored with agglutination.

It’s only through clear definition
We will supersede this tradition
Of muddied-up clauses
A clear lack of pauses
Impeding ideas and cognition.

So join me in fighting for phrases
That leave us with knowledge, not dazes.
I hope that you see
Such simplicity
Deserves our regard and our praises!

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Image from Deposit Photos © avemario 2016

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Toy Train

(This poem can be read two ways; read the bottom two lines to find out more!)

***

You know I hold no grudge, it’s not as though
You broke my precious train set just for fun.
I know you meant no harm. I’d never go:
I simply can’t forgive what you have done.
For you are so mature that no one states
You act your age at only six years old!
I never think you’d act like we aren’t mates;
I never thought you’d be that brash and bold.
You did not know the truth. I cannot say
You knew I only got it just last week.
I saw your disappointment and dismay
You watched a tear roll slowly down my cheek.
It’s merely just a toy. I’d never state
Our many years as buddies have to end.
In fact, I think this day’s made us best mates,
And so, you will no longer be my “friend.”

***

But no. I’ve reassessed. That train was mine.
So now, go back and read each second line.

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Image from Pixabay © CC0 Creative Commons 2016

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No, Wait!

“No, wait!” she shouted anxiously while tugging at my sleeve.
“You can’t go now!” she whimpered. “I do not want you to leave!”

“I’ve got to go,” I told her. “But quite soon I will be back.
See—if I do not go to work I’ll surely get the sack!”

I knew that it was hard for kids to bid their Dads goodbye.
I knew that it was normal that they’d whinge and whine and cry.

But Nancy was their teacher. “Get a grip, you’re sixty-four.”
“But sir—your kids are monsters! I can’t take it anymore!”

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Image from Pixabay © CC0 Creative Commons 2015

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From The Archives: Mess Fairies

Mess Fairies

Now something kids like you and I are told when we are young
Is that after we have lost one of our teeth,
We put it in our bed, we put our pillow down on top,
And a Fairy takes it out from underneath.

Because we know the Tooth Fairy is nice (she leaves us cash),
We come to think that all Fairies are kind,
But Mums and Dads don’t let us know that some of them are bad:
They leave a mess—not shiny coins—behind.

We’ve all collapsed in bed and left our bedrooms spick and span
But woken up with toys all strewn about.
We’ve put our clothes away and tucked our socks and shirts in drawers,
But when we wake up, all of them are out!

At first, I thought perhaps I had just dreamed I’d tidied up.
I sighed but once more cleaned and swept and packed.
But then, I got suspicious! I got a camera,
And set it up to catch them in the act!

The cheeky little Sprites had had a party in my shelves,
They’d thrown my toys and teddies from their box.
They’d tipped my jars of pencils, they’d opened every drawer,
Unrolled and mismatched all my pairs of socks.

So late that night I waited, in the dark, a torch in reach
I held the proof—a photo—in my hand.
And when once more the naughty Fairies came in through the door,
My torch came on. Their jaws dropped. It was grand.

“Now listen!” I said forcefully. “This mess has got to stop.
I’m sick of cleaning up. I’ve had enough.
From now on,” I said, holding up the photo, “You’ll come back,
And every night you will clean up my stuff!”

And that, my friends, is how I went from tidying non-stop
To never cleaning up a drawer or shelf.
So if you think your Mess Fairies are messing up your room,
Perhaps it’s time to catch them out yourself.

Original Illustration © Robbie Yates 2017

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From The Archives: Allergies to Chores

Dear Mom, I have some information that is rather grave.
I got it in a very urgent call.
The hospital laboratory said I must be brave,
In order to avoid demise and pall.

The doctor on the line said, “I have never seen a list
Of symptoms and of woes as bad as yours.”
I’ll save you all the details Mom, I’ll tell you just the gist:
He said that I’ve got allergies. To chores.

“No dishes,” he commanded. “And no laundry,” he prescribed.
I’m sure you’ll see that this affliction stinks.
“No vacuuming,” I promised. “And no mops,” I sadly sighed.
“No cleaning up of toilets or of sinks.”

I know the outlook’s dreadful, now whatever shall we do?
I’ll miss the mowing; polishing; the broom.
I ‘spose that’s it for me, Mom. Since I’m feeling extra blue,
You’ll find me watching TV in my room.

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Original Illustration © Robbie Yates 2018

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