Category Archives: funny poetry

dVerse Writers: The Ballad of Henry and Ruth

The prompt was to write a poem in a certain musical style.  This tale is heart-rending in a typical late-50’s, early-60’s style. If you were alive and paying attention during that era, you should be able to put a tune to it:

The Ballad of Henry and Ruth

Before she met him at the candy store,
her days were empty and her life was a bore;
but when he offered her his Jujyfruits,
in just a moment they were in cahoots.
He was the drummer in a R&R band.
Down all 5th Avenue, he held her hand.
She felt his pulse beat pump a sweet love tune
and knew he’d be her Sugar Daddy soon.

Yes she met him at the candy store,
between the sucker rack and front screen door.
He nearly tripped over her Mary Janes
and crashed into a rack of Candy Canes.
The Double Bubble and the Tootsie Roll Pops
collided with the mints and lemon drops.
Their love was written in the moon and stars,
but realized beneath the Hershey Bars!

Oh Henry, she was crooning, and much more.
He loved this Bit O’ Honey down to the core.
Shifted his Firestick and they went for a ride
his Baby Ruth snuggled right up to his side.
She cried, “Oh, Henry!” as they hit the Mounds,
poppin’ wheelies as they did the rounds.
He was no Slo-Poke, tell you here and now,
so as he swerved to miss a big Black Cow,

The car rolled over on its Rollo Bars
crashing into six  more hot rod cars.
Atomic Fireball” said the words on his car.
Now how appropriate those two words are.
100 Grand it costs him on Payday
so he’ll be working every night and day—
his Red Hot mama working by his side,
for now his Sweet Tart is his blushing bride.

Repeat Chorus:

Just in case you weren’t around way back then, I’ve italicized the names of the candy bars and hard candies of the era. Sorry for ruining the fun of those of you familiar with the times. I know.  It’s pretty bad, but that, too, was typical of the songs of the era.

This poem is written to a prompt at dVerse Writers.



Simplicity is something that I rarely do.
Why have only one of something when you could have two?
It takes a lot of veggies to come up with a stew,
and we’d do a lot of limping if confined to just one shoe.

Multiples are awesome. Multiples are grand.
Look how many fingers we have upon each hand.
One finger could not do the job. Neither could two or three.
Simple cannot form a hand, did not form you or me.

Simplicity’s much touted but I think it is absurd.
Who ever heard of stories comprised of just one word?
With a single raindrop, the world could not get wetter.
Sparsity may be more chic, but I like clutter better.

I don’t get minimalism. I’m a hoarder to the core.
When I ran out of wall room, I put art upon my door.
There are no piles in hallways. Hoarding need not be a sin.
I’ve built three rooms onto my house just to store things in.

With so many lovely things in life, collecting is a joy.
With life’s manifold choices, why be niggardly or coy?
At the ice cream parlor, why does one have to choose?
You need not always limit yourself just to ones and twos.

Have a scoop of strawberry and pineapple and mint.
Green tea is delicious and tequila’s heaven sent.
Load your dish with raspberry and coconut and mango.
Why do the simple two step when you could do the fandango?

In short, I am a gatherer. I have too many things.
I like to make the choices that a complex lifestyle brings.
When it comes to writing, a stuffed-full mind is fine!
Reach into words and shake them out and string them on a line.

A solitary animal will never make a zoo.
One grain of dirt, one drop of water cannot create goo.
A single cannon fired will not execute a coup.
The world just is not simple, nor am I and nor are you!


I’m having a yard sale of left-over words.  Below is the “free box.” Take what you will (please note that some of these items have been recently used, but all have been laundered and are ready for a new user):

coy ploy toy bore core 
simplicity complicity duplicity felicity
ooze booze cruise who’s whose choose lose blues news pews poos cues ruse sues twos views woos youse 
doozie floozie twozie
boo  goo hue loo moo new poo queue rue sue soo sioux too to you view woo you


Right in line with the theme of the poem, below are way too many photos.  If you want to see the details, you know what to do, right?  If you don’t, I’ll tell you.  Just click on the first photo and click on arrows to proceed through the photo gallery.  To come back here afterwards, click on the X in the upper left corner.

Child of the Fifties

daily life  color146 (1)

These folks were the epitomes of every her and him.
The men were all smooth-shaven with haircuts short and trim.
The ladies of the fifties had their pearls and curly hair,
and fancy little house dresses were what they chose to wear.

Their kids were the epitomes of reproductive joy
who could serve as patterns for the perfect girl or boy.
They came out cute and perfect, created just to please.
They never fought or cheated or brought home F’s or D’s.

How do I know that what I say is not stretching the truth?
How do I know these folks were all red-blooded, honest, couth;
and that every one of them maintained the stauts quo?
I know for I’m that perfect child in the very front row

who somehow by the sixties  got somewhat out of step
and later by the seventies had misplaced all her “hep,”
did not become a hippie until nineteen eighty seven,
and will join the moral majority much too late to get to heaven.

I am not the epitome of any group you know.
I do not wear the clothes you wear or go where you may go.
Epitome’s a talent that I forgot to hone,
and ever since I’ve chosen a pattern all my own.

The daily prompt was “Epitome.”

(These nice people were my parents and neighbors in the little town where I grew up and this poem is in no way meant to denigrate them.  I’m sure they were all unique individuals, as well.  It is the tendency of eras to turn into cliches that I am satirizing, not them.)

Bad Timing


Bad Timing

On my birthday in July, my true love gave to me
a coupon for a ski trip and a real live Christmas tree.
Chocolates when I’m dieting, sad songs when I am gloomy.
A grand piano, though my new apartment’s not too roomy.
The week that “Save the Animals” appointed me their chair,
he bought me a new winter coat of lynx and llama hair.

He brings home ice cream in the cold, hot cocoa in the summer.
When I broke my tooth, the peanut brittle was a bummer.
Though his gifts are generous, my thanks are often mimed,
for I’m speechless over just how badly all of them are timed!
The reason why we are not wed is so hard to relate.
I had the cake, the rings, the gown. We set the time and date.

The groom showed up and waited as I walked down the aisle.
My wedding dress was finest lace, my undergarments lisle.
I’d planned each detail out with care and left no stone unturned.
Just one detail  left to him–you’d think I would have learned!
For when I went to say “I do” to this  man I adore,
they found our wedding license had lapsed two weeks before!

The Prompt––10,000 Spoons  Tell your own verse, stanza, or story of a badly-timed annoyance.



Lost: The Ones That (Fortunately) Got Away

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Out of Reach.” Write about the one X that got away — a person, an experience, a place you wanted to visit.


The one or two who got away
I’ll not call back another day;
for, compared to all the rest,
it seems I got to keep the best!


Though a poetry press was up my alley,
I never saw a single galley;
for the editor did not choose me
though I thought the  job was meant to be.

I decided to go back to college
to get some other sort of knowledge.
Met the editor’s wife in my first class,
who professed her spouse to be an ass.

Art took the place of words for years,
as I happily changed gears;
for although the poetry press was hot,
it seems the editor was not!


The pounds I lost over the years
have lived up to my greatest fears.
They decided they would all come back.
Have old home week. Rejoin the pack!

But I will not give up the fight
to try to curb my appetite.
I buy these capsules that are magic–
a spell against an outcome tragic.

Expensive?  Yes.  But worth the cost,
to keep at bay those pounds  I lost!



Top and Bottom

I pass it on my way back home from everywhere I go,
and every time my car just seems to naturally slow
and even if I’ve recently finished a big meal,
and much as I vow this time I won’t turn the wheel,
still something else takes over and I turn into the street
where the ice cream vendor sells his icy sweet.

I do not have to leave my car, just pull up to his booth some
and drive away in minutes with a treat that’s sweet and toothsome.
Vanilla on the bottom and strawberry on the top–
he has my order ready as I come to a full stop.
And since I always buy it when I’m on my way back home,
I eat all the ice cream, but I save my dogs the cone.

Though I think it’s my secret, I’m not fooling anyone;
for though they only see me when my ice creaming is done,
there is evidence of strawberry spilled down the front of me
as well as evidence behind that everyone can see.
This ice cream is delicious–never too bland or cloying,
yet I fear its overuse is interfering with my “boying.”

For though a gal might overlook the fact a guy is tubby,
I’ve yet to find the man who likes a woman who’s too chubby.
That’s why it’s been two months since my addiction I have kicked,
and in that time nary an ice cream have I ever licked.
So if you see that I’ve resumed this nasty ice cream habit,
you have my permission  to intervene and  grab it.

For I can wipe the Ice cream off both my blouse and lips,
but it’s not easily removed from down there on my hips
where you can see remains of it as I come and go.
Some deposited above, the rest seen far below.
In the absence of will power, I could use an ice cream cop
lest I wear vanilla on my bottom and strawberry on my top!

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Breakdown.” Tell us about a habit you’d like to break.

What You might Not Know about Dr. Seuss

What You might Not Know about Dr. Seuss

In the 50’s, 23 different Dr. Seuss poems were published in Redbook Magazine. All but one, “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” were original.  “The Zode in the Road” By Dr. Seuss was not included in the list of rhymed stories that they published, but I know it was published in a magazine, because my mother cut it out and glued it to cardboard (I believe because I used it as the poem I memorized it for school–something we had to do once a week way back then) and for many years I had it in with my favorite “things.”  Here is that poem:

The Zode in the Road by Dr. Seuss

Did I ever tell you about the young Zode,
Who came to two signs at the fork in the road?
One said to Place One, and the other, Place Two.
So the Zode had to make up his mind what to do.
Well…the Zode scratched his head, and his chin and his pants.
And he said to himself, “I’ll be taking a chance
If I go to Place One. Now, that place may be hot!
And so, how do I know if I’ll like it or not?
On the other hand though, I’ll be sort of a fool
If I go to Place Two and find it too cool.
In that case I may catch a chill and turn blue!
So, maybe Place One is the best, not Place Two,
But then again, what if Place One is too high?
I may catch a terrible earache and die!
So Place Two may be best! On the other hand though…
What might happen to me if Place Two is too low?
I might get some very strange pain in my toe!
So Place One may be best,” and he started to go.
Then he stopped, and he said, “On the other hand
On the other hand…other hand…other hand though…”
And for 36 hours and a half that poor Zode
Made starts and made stops at the fork in the road.
Saying, “Don’t take a chance. No! You may not be
Then he got an idea that was wonderfully bright!
“Play safe!” cried the Zode. “I’ll play safe. I’m no dunce!
I’ll simply start out for both places at once!”
And that’s how the Zode who would not take a chance
Got no place at all with a split in his pants.

Probably most people don’t know that Dr. Seuss also wrote “Our Job in Japan,” a training film for soldiers embarking on occupation duty in Japan in 1945–that was later remade into a documentary entitled “Design for Death,”  that received an academy award in 1947.  HERE is a link to that training film which contains some information I had never heard before.