June 26, 2011

The Duel… #PoetrySummer, Week 4

Here lies a post in which I recite (with dramatic help from Eva) the fourth poem I memorized for #PoetrySummer. David checked me this morning, and I got it right, but I couldn’t help trying again this afternoon with the voice-memo app on my phone in hand. Eva made me giggle a few times, but I think this recording went relatively well. Click the poem’s title below to hear us.

The Duel, by Eugene Field

The gingham dog and the calico cat
Side by side on the table sat;
‘Twas half-past twelve, and (what do you think!)
Nor one nor t’ other had slept a wink!
The old Dutch clock and the Chinese plate
Appeared to know as sure as fate
There was going to be a terrible spat.
(I wasn’t there; I simply state
What was told to me by the Chinese plate!)

The gingham dog went “Bow-wow-wow!”
And the calico cat replied “Mee-ow!”
The air was littered, an hour or so,
With bits of gingham and calico,
While the old Dutch clock in the chimney-place
Up with its hands before its face,
For it always dreaded a family row!
(Now mind: I ‘m only telling you
What the old Dutch clock declares is true!)

The Chinese plate looked very blue,
And wailed, “Oh, dear! what shall we do!”
But the gingham dog and the calico cat
Wallowed this way and tumbled that,
Employing every tooth and claw
In the awfullest way you ever saw—
And, oh! how the gingham and calico flew!
(Don’t fancy I exaggerate—
I got my news from the Chinese plate!)

Next morning, where the two had sat
They found no trace of dog or cat;
And some folks think unto this day
That burglars stole that pair away!
But the truth about the cat and pup
Is this: they ate each other up!
Now what do you really think of that!
(The old Dutch clock it told me so,
And that is how I came to know.)

God, I wish I had a recording of my Grandma Webb saying this poem. Like I said last week, we used to read it every time I visited her. I haven’t decided on my next poem for the challenge yet, but it’ll have to wait until later. Eva, my mom, and I have a date to see Cars 2!

By the way, check out the Twitter hash tag #PoetrySummer to see other posts about this challenge. Or, visit Dan Wells at his blog. He and a friend started the whole shebang.

One comment

Well done! My mother used to read this to me. It was good to go back there again.

by Bob Bryant on June 26, 2011 at 9:43 pm. #