She’s a mouser

Just another lyric to entertain all you folks at home.
For Princess, Buster, Peaches, Mr. Gray and Little Bear and all cats everywhere.

There’s a kitty in my house
She loves the taste of mouse
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She’s the master of her fate
She’s never one to wait
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She jumps on my lap
And she plays with my cap
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She does what she will
And she sleeps on the sill
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She once fit in the palm of my hand
Her green eyes tried to understand
Why there was no big parade
Or crowds to applaud her on her way

She dreams her kitty dreams
She runs the roofy beams
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

The sun is her friend
You’d think they were kin
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She loves to jump and play
Each and every day
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouse

When she gets to cavort
She’s never out of sorts
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She once fit in the palm of my hand
Her green eyes tried to understand
Why there was no big parade
Or crowds to applaud her on her way

She’s got long sharp teeth
And claws on her feet
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She keeps the moles away
And all the rats at bay
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

If you’re a rat in town
Don’t come around
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

There’s a kitty in my house
She loves the taste of mouse
She’s a mouser, she’s a mouser

She once fit in the palm of my hand
Her green eyes tried to understand
Why there was no big parade
Or crowds to applaud her on her way

She’s my mouser
She’s my mouser
She’s my mouser
Oh, yes, she is



C’mon down

A Rappin’zella

If you like to eat, and you like to eat good
C’mon down and get yourself a bite
Of the best darn food in the neighborhood
Open six of the seven both day and night.

A wisp of a smell, the aroma grows
As you drive your car to the way down there
Where the food is great, a delight for the nose.
A darn good odor, it fills the air.

Have a burger and fries, they’re the best
With onions and ‘maters and lettuce too.
So um um good, you’ll puff out your chest.
You’ll snap your fingers and tap your shoe.

Have a steak and have it rare
Right off the grill and on your plate.
It’s made just right, grilled with care.
The best darn steak you ever ate.

If you want your sushi sushitized,
If you want your venison venisonized,
If you want your fish without their eyes,
Come to the place with the blue ribbon prize.

So c’mon down and feed yourself,
All you gals and all you fellows,
‘Cause Sam’s the cook, Ella the chef
Of the diner they call the Sam ‘N’ Ella.

The Uses and Misuses of April

Here’s a post to celebrate National Poetry Month on its final day. Sometimes it’s a knock-down-drag-out when poets get together; sometimes it is not. You just never know what they are going to say, so here’s an imaginary conversation between two poets who did the poetry thang well.

Time: the Present.

On a fine spring day, a large man, with an enormous appetite for the good things of life and enough zest to enjoy them, enters the Tabard Inn. He is a man bulging with good humor. He could be Shakespeare’s Falstaff or Robin Hood’s Friar Tuck, but he is not. He is Geoffrey Chaucer, and this is not a man who will tell the world that it is a dark and stormy night. That man sits in a corner across the room, writing in his notebook, nursing a martini. His name is T. S. Eliot, and he is the great modernist poet. Chaucer is here to question Eliot over the use and misuse of Aprils.

Chaucer orders a flagon of mead and walks over to Eliot. He extends his hand. Eliot takes a sip of his martini, then stands and shakes Chaucer’s hand.

Chaucer (sits): How’s the news?

Eliot: It’s that cruel April again. (Eliot opens his poem, “The Waste Land” with the line: “April is the cruelest month, breeding.”)

Chaucer: A good month to go on pilgrimage. Or simply do the Omar Khayyam gig: “A jug of wine, a loaf of bread, and thee.” Now that would make a nice picnic. (Chaucer quotes from Edward Fitzgerald’s translation of “The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.)

Eliot: Yes, but he didn’t mention the ants. Surely there were ants.

Chaucer (ignoring the ant comment): So you believe April is the cruelest month?

Eliot: I said so.

Chaucer: Seems to me you were misusing April.

Eliot: You were way too generous with April. (Chaucer opens his Prologue to “The Canterbury Tales” with the lines: “When April with his showers sweet with fruit / the drought of March has pierced unto the root / And bathed each vein with liquor that has power / to generate therein and sire the flower.”)

Chaucer: Why do you believe April is the cruelest month?

Eliot: It’s this lousy English weather.

Chaucer: By April’s end, all the lousy weather is washed away.

Eliot: If that wasn’t enough, we had just had the Spanish flu.

Chaucer: We had the plague.

Eliot: And World War I, the war to end all wars, had wiped out millions of our young men.

Chaucer: We had the Hundred Years War with France.

Eliot: My wife was getting ready for a mental breakdown.

Chaucer: I lost my beloved wife too.

Eliot: I was harassed by the government over taxes.

Chaucer: I had money stolen from me. It was not mine. I had to repay every farthing. And yet I remained cheerful. Can’t we just arm wrestle about this April business?

Eliot: You’d win.

Chaucer (going for the positive): It seems we do have something in common.

Eliot (smiles for the first time): Yes, we do. National Poetry Month. It was our words that inspired April as the choice.

Chaucer: Let me cheer you up with a joke. Something a little Wife of Bath-ist.

Eliot (covers his ears): No thanks. I’ve heard your Miller’s Tale.

Chaucer: Then let me tell you of a woman who was married five times.

Eliot: You just can’t resist, can you?

Chaucer throws back his head and fills the tavern with his laugh. This conversation continues for hours. The two poets discuss everything from the sonnet to the sestina. Finally, it comes to an end.

Chaucer: I must say you really let your hair down with “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats”. That was some mighty fine work.

Eliot: Poetry was always vox populi.

Chaucer: I know. The voice of the people.

Eliot: Better yet, the song of the people. Since I covered cats, I’m working on a new Holy Grail play. Calling it “Spamalot”.

Chaucer: I believe those Monty Python folks did that.

Eliot: Darn that John Cleese. Then it’s dogs for me.

Chaucer: Mary Oliver did that too. “Dog Songs” it’s called.

Eliot: Then what about Alexander Hamilton?

Chaucer: That’s a smash hit on Broadway.

Eliot: It’s true, you know. Old poets do not die. They just fade away.

The two men shake hands. Eliot goes back to his notebook. Chaucer heads out the door of the inn and joins the innkeeper and twenty-nine pilgrims. They are off to Canterbury.

Uncle Bardie’s Spotlight Creator: Derek Walcott, Poet

Once a week on Friday, Uncle Bardie celebrates the creativity in others by shining a Spotlight on a movie, a song or a creator. This week’s Spotlight Creator is the poet, Derek Walcott:

Derek Walcott on writing and painting.

Oh, what a beautiful language we have, this English. We strip it and we tear it down, we ignore it and abuse it and lose a bit of it along the way. It not only survives. It rises like a phoenix and soars. Especially when it is in the hands of a poet. William Shakespeare was that kind of poet, and Seamus Heaney too. So was Derek Walcott.

Derek Walcott was an island man, so he gave us islands and the sea. He showed us that poetry could rise out of the least of places. That it was possible for a black man from a very small place could become a great poet. And he did it with this magnificent language of ours.


Uncle Bardie’s Spotlight Movie: A Washed Up Poet

inOnce a week on Friday, Uncle Bardie celebrates the creativity in others by shining a Spotlight on a movie, a song or a creator. This week’s Movie Spotlight is “Reuben, Reuben” (1983):

National Poetry Month is coming up in April. So here’s a reminder to read a few poems during the month, the movie “Reuben, Reuben”. It’s charming and it’s funny and it has romance. The Reuben in the title is not the poet. It’s the supporting character dog in this small movie comedy. A very important supporting character.

Tom Conti is a washed up Scottish poet Gowen McGland. He has a huge case of writer’s block.  In his younger days, he wrote poems that became taught in college classrooms everywhere, though nobody seems to know what they mean. He has become more famous for his drinking and womanizing than for his poetry.

Julius J. Epstein wrote the screenplay. He adapted it from Herman Shumlin’s play “Spofford” which in turn was an adaptation of the Peter DeVries novel, “Reuben, Reuben”. There is a good chance that Dylan Thomas was a model for Gowen McGland.

Gowen makes his living travelling around, speaking to women’s clubs, small colleges and any other organization that pay a stipend. His latest destination is an affluent Connecticut suburb. There’s enough bored housewives there for him to seduce to make it worth the pittance of a stipend he’ll receive. But he doesn’t really do much seduction. A number of the bored are throwing themselves at him. After all, he has that Scottish accent.

Little does he realize that his life is about to change and it will be a Connecticut suburb that does it. He might even break through that writer’s block.