Wednesday, October 1, 2014

English 101

Bob Broadcast speaks People Magazine's English;
I bless Washington in a gruff Marine's English.

You're in America now, says Uncle Jumbo,
José, can you see? Amigo, that means English!

Struggling sophomores stumped by thees and thous
Strain their brains over Hamlet (the ghost scene's English).

Dame Helen Mirren converses in thirty dialects,
Especially skilled, of course, at the Queen's English.

We're going to Oklahoma! South Carolina! Michigan!
All the way--yeeeaargh! Oh, Howard Dean's English!

Sweet Mrs Novena, a pious Christian soul,
Deplores the tenor of her flip teen's English.

Drastic blasts of chatter fueled by Maxwell House!
Jittery jolts of wit, my caffeine's English!

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof? The Iceman Cometh?
Do you prefer Tennessee's or Eugene's English?

Madmen, drummers, bummers, saints in the city:
In Asbury Park they know Springsteen's English.

Mr Bleeper, an eager network censor,
Scrubs out the smut and thoroughly cleans English.

Life is worth living! proclaims the smiling bishop.
Millions of homes hear Fulton J. Sheen's English!

Brought up among the lyric hills of Eire,
The cantatrice Eithne Ní Bhraonáin keens English.

Diversity changes Cambridge's sights and sounds;
The language demographic still leans English.

Eye-gore prepares the monster's "sedagive":
Nothing Wilder than Young Fronkensteen's English!

"Here, kid, catch"--the Pittsburgh tackle's jersey!
A cool souvenir of Mean Joe Greene's English!

The palindrome of Bolton would be Notlob:
Let's memorize the Python routine's English!

Dexys Midnight Runners sing of a lass
Who toorah-loorahs in a pert colleen's English.

At the Shattuck Hospital in Jamaica Plain,
Patients are pacified by Olanzapine's English.

Thomas, with your accent waiting to happen,
Gaelic and garlic season your baked beans' English.


  1. One of my favorite of your ghazals—it's a delight to read. (And an interesting contrast with the previous poem you posted, which shows admirable range.)

    1. Thank you, Jeff! I'm very glad you liked it.



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