Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Ye Olde School For Slow Poets

Remember this nursery rhyme?

Old Mother Hubbard
Went to her cupboard
To get her poor dog a bone.
But when she got there
The cupboard was bare
And so the poor dog had none.

I was reminded of this a few minutes ago, since I'm really hungry. It's 3:30 in the afternoon and I haven't eaten anything all day. But there's just not much in the house to eat! I finally found a bowl of instant rice, and that's going to be my lunch. It's in the microwave right now. I think I still have some Redpop in the fridge too.

Additional thought: "Bone" and "None" don't rhyme. What's up with that? Did they USED to rhyme, back in the olden days when people said things like "forsooth" and "methinks"? Or were nursery rhymes written by idiots that flunked English 101, and this is the only work they could get?

Teacher: Ok, Bradford, let's work on those last few lines of your poem. Remember what we talked about yesterday? This particular poem has to follow a specific rhyme pattern. Not all poems have to rhyme, but some do, and this is one of them. That's what the assignment is. Remember that?

Bradford: I think so.

Teacher: Good. Now, look at those lines right there... you've got the word "horse" in a spot where it should be rhyming with "wheat." Let's fix that.

Bradford: Are you trying to tell me that "horse" and "wheat" don't rhyme?

Teacher: They don't rhyme. Here, let's try to think of some words that rhyme. For example, if I said "grant," you could use "can't, ant, plant..." See? Now you try it. Let's use the word "bone". What rhymes with that?

Bradford: Boner.

Teacher: What? That doesn't rhyme. That's just an extra letter you stuck on the end.

Bradford: No, I mean I HAVE a boner. Right now. See?

Teacher: Put that away and concentrate on your lesson!! Now WHAT RHYMES with "BONE"?

Bradford: Um... horse?

Teacher: No.

Bradford: Apple?

Teacher: No.... (*sigh*)

Bradford: Antidisestablishmentarianism? Supercalifragilisticexpialadocious? Sesquipedalianism? Cat? Dog?

Teacher: Stop guessing! Come on, Bradford. This should be obvious. Look at the word "bone". Now try to think of other words that sound like it.

Bradford: (pause).... How about "none"?

Teacher: Well, not exactly, but we're getting closer. Now, let's--


Bradford: Oh, hey, there's the bell. Time to go home and shovel sheep crap! I love sheep. Good thing I still have my boner!


Marilyn said...

I think they call it a slant rhyme... it's used all the time by modern poets who want to use old fashioned forms but don't want to sound old fashioned. I think it's cheating, but they didn't ask me.

Lynda said...

Considering what I heard about the dog, he still had his boner too.

metalmom said...

Hmm...Student named Bradford?? I sense a not-so-secret secret!

Travis said...

The rhythm of a nursery rhyme always seemed more important to me than the rhyme itself.

Janna said...

Marilyn: They didn't ask me either, unfortunately.

Lynda: You didn't LOOK, did you??

Metalmom: I tried to pick a name that was British and looked good on the cover of a book of nursery rhymes. I also wanted it to not be the name of anyone I knew. I don't know any Bradfords. I know two Bradleys, though. Does that count?

Travis: And yet, it's still called a nursery RHYME, so by god it should rhyme, dammit! :)

Morgen said...

You crack me up.
I think Old Mother Hubbard could have used a good boning, too, come to think of it.
Oh wait, you're saying that YOU'RE Old Mother Hubbard...
well, it still applies.

Janna said...

Morgen: Listen! Hear that? It's the sound of me nodding in complete agreement!

Travis said...

But it does rhyme!

Janna said...

Travis: No, BONE and NONE don't rhyme! ...Wait a minute... your real name isn't Bradford, is it???

Lynda said...

Not intentionally! I mean, how could you not notice that thing!?

Janna said...

Lynda: You realize, of course, that if Fab was here he'd be asking you a whole bunch of peanut butter questions. Hey, maybe you guys can talk about that on the radio on Sunday!

Mr. Fabulous said...

Duly noted!

Janna said...

Mr. Fab: And be sure to ask her if it's a problem when Nikki farts in the middle of things....