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A practical plethora of parodies.

Here are eight parodies of famous poems. The first two stand alone, and the last six are progressions on "Mary Had a Little Lamb." I enjoy writing parodies. One drawback to doing them is that they often work better if the reader knows the original. This can be avoided by writing something that is funny enough to not require any previous knowledge.
So Much More Depends
 (after "The Red Wheelbarrow" by William Carlos Williams)
so much more depends
upon the red chickens
glazed with hot sauce
beside the barbecue pit
How Do I Loathe Thee
 (after "How Do I Love Thee" (Sonnet 43) by Elizabeth Barrett
Browning)
How do I loathe thee, Boss? Let's count the ways. I loathe thee to
the depth and breadth and height My fist can reach, when throwing thee a
right For the ends of smacking thee upon thy face. I loathe thee to the
level of everyday's Most quiet punch, in sun or neon light. I
loathe thee freely, as employees might. I loathe thee purely, as they
sock to daze. I loathe thee with a passion put to use With kung fu,
tai-kwon-do, karate chop. I loathe thee with a hate I seemed to lose
With my lost club--I loathe thee with a bop Upon thy nose or chin, and
if God choose, I shall but loathe thee better when you drop.
Let Us Go, Then, You and I
 (after "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," by T.S. Eliot)
Let us go, then, you and I, up the stairs into the sky. Let us climb the
points of stars that twinkle like the lights of cars. Let us touch the
moon, the sun, and every planet, like this one. Let us drink the Milky
Way that pours into the glass of day. Let us sail the great Big Dipper
like a cosmic Yankee Clipper. Let us leave the shores of space And cross
the universe's face and splash through waves that lap the beach
whose flowing edge we never reach and feel the skin of timeless time
where feeling disappears in rhyme. Let us go, then, you and I: Down
there's the earth, up here's the sky.
She Dwelt among Ungoldy Ways
 (after "She Dwelt among Untrodden Ways" by William
Wordsworth)
She dwelt among ungodly ways
  Without a bar of Dove Or any other soap, and thus
  She had no one to love;
A stinkweed by a mossy stone
  Half hidden from the nose! --Fair as a skunk, when only one
  Is standing near a rose.
She lived unclean, and few could know
  When Lucy bathed, you see; But now she's in the tub, and oh,
  The difference to me! 


MARY HADE A RHYTHMIC LAMB

Like any traditional rhymed poem worth its salt, the "Lamb" has a strong rhythm. The first line has four beats, the second three, and so on, alternating four and three beats to the end. In the parodies below, each has a consistent rhythm throughout. "Her Lamb" has 1 beat in each of the eight lines. "Mary's Lamb" has 2 beats in each line. The progression continues to 6 beats in each line. I tried to make all of these lambs have the spirit of the original lamb immortalized in the poem by Sarah Josepha Hale.
Her Lamb
  (1 beat per line)
   Her lamb
   Like snow
   With her
   Would go.
   It broke
   A rule
   And went
   To school.
   Mary's Lamb
 (2 beats per line)
   Mary's lamb
   Was white as snow--
   And where she went,
   The lamb would go.
   To school it went!
   That broke a rule.
   The children laughed:
   "A lamb's in school!"
   Mary Had a Lamb
 (3 beats per line)
   Mary had a lamb,
   Its fleece was white as snow,
   And everywhere she went,
   The lamb was sure to go.
   It went to school with her,
   That was against the rule,
   The children laughed and played
   To see a lamb in school.
   Mary Had a Little Lamb
 (4 beats per line)
   Mary had a little lamb,
   Its fleece was downy white like snow,
   And everywhere that Mary went,
   The lamb was always sure to go.
   It followed her to school one day,
   That was against the district's rule.
   It made the children laugh and play
   To see a lamb like hers in school.
   Mary Had a Tiny Little Lamb
 (5 beats per line)
   Mary had a tiny little lamb,
   Its fleece was frosty white like driven snow,
   And everywhere its owner, Mary, went,
   The lamb was always sure that it would go.
   It followed Mary to her school one day.
   That was, alas, against the school board's rule.
   It made the children chuckle, laugh, and play
   To see a lamb just like that one in school.
   Mary Had a Teeny-Tiny Little Lamb
 (6 beats per line)
   Mary had a teeny-tiny little lamb,
   Its fleece was frosty white just like the driven snow,
   And everywhere its loving owner, Mary, went,
   The lamb was absolutely sure that it would go.
   It followed Mary closely to her school one day.
   That was, alas, against the school board's strictest rule.
   It made the children giggle, chuckle, laugh, and play
   To see an itsy-bitsy lamb like that in school. 
COPYRIGHT 2014 Jeremiah Farrell
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Title Annotation:KICKSHAWS
Publication:Word Ways
Date:Aug 1, 2014
Words:984
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