Spike Milligan |
'Twas midnight in the schoolroom
And every desk was shut
When suddenly from the alphabet
Was heard a loud "Tut-Tut!"
Said A to B, "I don't like C;
His manners are a lack.
For all I ever see of C
Is a semi-circular back!"
"I disagree," said D to B,
"I've never found C so.
From where I stand he seems to be
An uncompleted O.
C was vexed, "I'm much perplexed,
You criticise my shape.
I'm made like that, to help spell Cat
And Cow and Cool and Cape.
"He's right" said E; said F, "Whoopee!"
Said G, "'Ip, 'Ip, 'ooray!"
"You're dropping me," roared H to G.
"Don't do it please I pray.
"Out of my way," LL said to K.
"I'll make poor I look ILL.
To stop this stunt J stood in front,
And presto! ILL was JILL.
"U know," said V, "that W
Is twice the age of me.
For as a Roman V is five
I'm half as young as he.
X and Y yawned sleepily,
"Look at the time!" they said.
"Let's all get off to beddy byes.
They did, then "Z-z-z.
Sylvia Plath |
The smile of iceboxes annihilates me.
Such blue currents in the veins of my loved one!
I hear her great heart purr.
From her lips ampersands and percent signs
Exit like kisses.
It is Monday in her mind: morals
Launder and present themselves.
What am I to make of these contradictions?
I wear white cuffs, I bow.
Is this love then, this red material
Issuing from the steele needle that flies so blindingly?
It will make little dresses and coats,
It will cover a dynasty.
How her body opens and shuts --
A Swiss watch, jeweled in the hinges!
O heart, such disorganization!
The stars are flashing like terrible numerals.
ABC, her eyelids say.
Wislawa Szymborska |
In ordinary ink
on ordinary paper: they were given no food,
they all died of hunger.
It's a big meadow.
How much grass
for each one?" Write: I don't know.
History counts its skeletons in round numbers.
A thousand and one remains a thousand,
as though the one had never existed:
an imaginary embryo, an empty cradle,
an ABC never read,
air that laughs, cries, grows,
emptiness running down steps toward the garden,
nobody's place in the line.
We stand in the meadow where it became flesh,
and the meadow is silent as a false witness.
Nearby, a forest
with wood for chewing and water under the bark-
every day a full ration of the view
until you go blind.
Overhead, a bird-
the shadow of its life-giving wings
brushed their lips.
Their jaws opened.
Teeth clacked against teeth.
At night, the sickle moon shone in the sky
and reaped wheat for their bread.
Hands came floating from blackened icons,
empty cups in their fingers.
On a spit of barbed wire,
a man was turning.
They sang with their mouths full of earth.
"A lovely song of how war strikes straight
at the heart.
" Write: how silent.
Mother Goose |
Great A, little a,
The cat's in the cupboard,
And can't see me.