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Take Courage Little Minor Scribe,

Updated on June 20, 2011

A little bit of correct punctuation never hurt anybody.

Take courage little minor scribe,

 

Take courage little minor scribe,

Who scribbleth ABCB,

Our Poet Laureate, you’ll find,

Can’t spell words such as Phoebe.

 

 

 

His punctuation leads him to                                                             

(When told, “The poet’s back”)                                                       

Assume the poet’s dorsal side                                                          

Is on the return track.

 

Or cruising past a grocery,

(The verdant kind, I’ve stressed),

Perceives the apple’s, pear’s and plum’s

As Plural or Possessed.

 

And there an awful error’s made,

If with language, one’s obsessive;

They’re neither Plural nor Possessed

The Apostrophe’s Possessive.

 

That floating comma indicates,

Those fruits are not possessed;

It means they’re the possessors.

(But here I have digressed.)

 

For rules of language I adhere to

As to the Decalogue

For, “Once”, they say, “a Pedagogue;

Always a Pedagogue!”

 

His etymological attempts,                                                                

Whilst sometimes quite bizarre,                                                        

Leave Mrs Malaprop’s mistakes                                                       

Not only back, but far.

 

Yes, far, far, far behind his lead;                                                       

His endeavours make one smile,                                                       

For trying to impress with words,                                                     

Feet fancier becomes a paedophile.

 

Or worse, much worse, his spelling                                                  

Seems sent, just to divert us,                                                            

For paedophile becomes pediophile                                                  

Arthritis becomes Arthuritis.

 

But still, this Poet Laureate,                                                              

To chastise my poor endeavour,                                                       

Remonstrates with me and says                                                        

I’m really less than clever.

 

“Never, never let me read                                                                 

A poem with the verses                                                                    

Exceeding four or five,” he says                                                       

“And more than that, the worse is”.

 

My doggerel’s too long again;                                                          

I really need a helper                                                                        

And so I’ll beat my breast and cry,                                                   

“Mea Culpa! Mea Culpa!”

 

And if that isn’t quite enough,                                                           

Just two of “Mea Culpa!”                                                                 

(For three is the required amount);                                                    

I’ll add one “Mea Culpa!”

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    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      AH, I was a teacher, and I strongly believe that if children are unruly, it is frequently the fault of the teacher, who hasn't made the lessons interesting enough. I admit that I taught Primary, but I taught in London SE1, Southwark, between London Bridge and the Elephant and castle, and they weren't exactly upper middle class kids... In fact they were the kind of kids I most liked teaching.

    • attemptedhumour profile image

      attemptedhumour 7 years ago from Australia

      She had an unruly, useless student too, lest we forget.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      I was just speaking to "the Poet Laureate" as I opened your comment, AH, and he still maintains that there is nothing wrong with the greengrocers' apostrophe.

      Poor fool, and I feel sorry that you had a useless English teacher... but your writing and skill proves that you could surmount that difficulty. Thanks for your visit.

    • attemptedhumour profile image

      attemptedhumour 7 years ago from Australia

      A brilliant waltz around our confounded language. Having an aversion to school and a useless English teacher. I will be honest enough to admit that most of your intricacies went over my head. But i got the gist of what is obviously a wonderful example of pure creative writing.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thank you for that really encouraging comment... err... comments, Mark. From a clever writer, as yourself, that really makes my day.

      It's true, you know, these paedophidles are everywhere nowadays, look around children's playgrounds and there's hardly any room for the more established pedophiles, peddlephiles, and paediophiles to get a look in.

    • Mark Ewbie profile image

      Mark Ewbie 7 years ago from UK

      Hi Twilight, I feel I have done you a disservice by not reading enough of your work, but I'm not a great reader. And man that's some pretty clever prose you put together there - I should've known by the quality of comments you leave with me.

      One minor thing, as you mention the p word. A moment of joy for my wife and I, we enjoy puns and word play, when we watched a TV interview with a bloke off the street who was complaining about paedophidlia.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thank you Shil. I think we're singing from the same carol sheet at times. Words mean a lot to me as they obviously do to you. Thanks for taking the time to read my deeply sensitive and moving poetry (Tee Hee!)

    • Shil1978 profile image

      Shil1978 7 years ago

      The "Arthuritis" had me giggling like a schoolgirl. That was funny as hell. Are we talking of King Arthur here :)

      Medical words are of course composed of prefixes/suffixes/word roots. In this case, as you would know, Arthr means 'a joint' + itis means inflammation. Hence, arthritis = inflammation of a joint or joints.

      I am still giggling btw - thanks for this wonderful hub Twilight. Wonderfully written, as usual!!

    • Candie V profile image

      Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

      I shall be wearing an extra pair of socks.. just in case! Oh.. to find a pair without holes! I'm on a mission!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Acaetnna, thank you so much. I blush at your kindness.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Thank you Candie. A much appreciated comment. When I get the nerve to publish it, I hope you like a poem that I wrote entitled, "I Love Your Voice"... if it's words you love, I hope they blow your socks of!

    • acaetnna profile image

      acaetnna 7 years ago from Guildford

      Wow - awesome and again brilliant. Thank you for sharing.

    • Candie V profile image

      Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

      If you'll notice on my hubs.. I'm a bit related to another 'famous' brit who had a fair way with words.. and a fair way with whiskey. Mostly the former influenced by the latter.. So I'm in love with words, as well.. and yours fills the ticket perfectly!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Hi Candie. Nice to see your comment. I really do appreciate it when you come back and take the time to read my little efforts. As I said to Christoph, I'm going to put something a bit more serious on soon. Hope you like it.

    • Candie V profile image

      Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

      "Perceives the apple’s, pear’s and plum’s

      As Plural or Possessed."

      Hahaha! Me thinks said 'Poet Laureate' is staring at you though your mirror! You are simply amazing! Oh.. I put in an 'English/Australian accent' with this. I do hope you don't mind terribly! Sure it sounds a bit 'off'.. but it's so much more fun to listen to than my 'accent'!

    • Twilight Lawns profile image
      Author

      Twilight Lawns 7 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Very clever, and very well spotted, Mr Reilly.

      Yes, that is the poor sod who falls wounded by my every barb... well, he should, but he wanders around in a daze, apparently unscathed.

      I wonder about the English accent. I have a feeling that some of our previous Poets Laureate had regional accents... whereas I (he says with great vanity) have an accent that even my British chums say is "So terribly, terribly English; and it's a mixture of EA (Educated Australian), Received and British India".

      I promise you the next thing I put on HP will be a bit more serious. Away with the verse (or worse)!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

      You've done it again, my friend, more of your clever verse to entertain us. Would that be the same Poet Laureate who has been the target of your barbs before? Poor fellow. How does one become a Poet Laureate anyway? Maybe I can do it. Definitely need an English accent (or is it we who have the accent?) to rhyme "helper" with "Culpa." Ha!

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