Thursday, February 15, 2018

DMC: "Epitaph for a Blue Balloon" by Michelle Heidenrich Barnes


"Lonely Blue Balloon" by Scott Richards


EPITAPH FOR A BLUE BALLOON

Here lies Blue,
dear departed
pioneer of skies uncharted.
Friend of downy clouds on high,
an easy breezy kind of guy.
Fearless till the day he lost
his helium—then tempest-tossed,
he realized flight was not his calling
at the moment he was falling.

© 2018 Michelle Heidenrich Barnes. All rights reserved.


Here are some scenes from Blue's travels . . .
(Best viewed full screen.)




Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Daily ditties this week included poems by Cynthia Cotten, Dianne Moritz, Randi Sonenshine, and Ellen Leventhal. Liz Steinglass is sharing hers today. To be included in next week's wrap-up celebration, post your poem on our February 2018 padlet.

Jone MacCulloch is hosting this week's Poetry Friday roundup at Check it Out.







DMC: "Epitaph for a Librarian" by Ellen Leventhal




EPITAPH FOR A LIBRARIAN

Liz the librarian checked out books
until the day she fell.
She banged her head; did not wake up.
Then she checked out, as well.

© 2018 Ellen Leventhal. All rights reserved.



Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Post your poem on our February 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, February 23rd, and one lucky participant will win a copy of their morbidly humorous collection from Charlesbridge:






Wednesday, February 14, 2018

DMC: "Fly's Time" by Randi Sonenshine





FLY'S TIME

Here lies Fly, who wasn’t clever.
He made the worst decision ever.
Lunch with Spider sounded swell.
He left this world an empty shell.

© 2018 Randi Sonenshine. All rights reserved.



Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Post your poem on our February 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, February 23rd, and one lucky participant will win a copy of their morbidly humorous collection from Charlesbridge:






Tuesday, February 13, 2018

DMC: "A Book's Demise" by Dianne Moritz




A BOOK'S DEMISE

Poor sales,
No TLC.
Book fails,
Soon O.O.P.*


© 2018 Dianne Moritz. All rights reserved.

               * In publishing, O.O.P. means "out of print."


Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Post your poem on our February 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, February 23rd, and one lucky participant will win a copy of their morbidly humorous collection from Charlesbridge:






Monday, February 12, 2018

DMC: "Epitaph for a Skunk" by Cynthia Cotten




EPITAPH FOR A SKUNK

You crossed the road, and now you're gone,
no more to waddle 'cross my lawn.
O, little one with noxious stink—
you won't be coming back, I think.

© 2018 Cynthia Cotten. All rights reserved.



Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Post your poem on our February 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, February 23rd, and one lucky participant will win a copy of their morbidly humorous collection from Charlesbridge:






Thursday, February 8, 2018

Poetry in Action: Graveyard Ditties


Photo by Ben Churchill

“Life does not cease to be funny when people die any more than it ceases to be serious when people laugh.” 
  
           – George Bernard Shaw, from The Doctor's Dilemma: a Tragedy


Photo by A.J.


Thanks to J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen, we're writing epitaph poems this month. After only one week, you can peruse more than twenty of them on the padlet! Whoa. You guys really like writing about death. You know what they say, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.


"THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD."                                                            Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor
     
 
Soooooo . . .

In keeping with that momentum, I thought it might be fun to share some "real-life" epitaphs that have been spotted out and about in the world. Can I confirm the authenticity in every case? No, but if one or two phony ones sneak in and make you giggle, what's the harm? The following graveyard ditties (along with many others) were found at Brief Poems: An irregular anthology of tweet-size poems.  It nearly killed me not to share more, but organization fanatic that I am, at least the ones I chose fell neatly into four categories.

The epitaphs in the first group play on the deceased's names.

Reader if cash thou art
In want of any
Dig 4 feet deep
And thou wilt find a Penny. 

          John Penny's epitaph in the Wimborne, England cemetery.

Owen Moore
Gone away
Owin' more
Than he could pay.

          The tombstone of Owen Moore in Battersea, London

Here lies Ann Mann,
Who lived an old maid
But died an old Mann.

          The tombstone of Ann Mann in London, England

On the 22nd of June
Jonathan Fiddle
Went out of tune.

          On a tombstone in a cemetery in Hartscombe, England


The next group pays tribute to how they lived their lives.

Here, reader, turn your weeping eyes,
My fate a useful moral teaches;
The hole in which my body lies
Would not contain one half my speeches.

          The tombstone of Lord Brougham, an orator

Beneath this stone, a lump of clay,
Lies stingy Jimmy Wyatt.
Who died one morning just at ten
And saved a dinner by it.

          A tombstone in Falkirk, England

Here lays Butch,
We planted him raw.
He was quick on the trigger,
But slow on the draw.

          A tombstone in a Silver City, Nevada cemetery

Tom Smith is dead, and here he lies,
Nobody laughs and nobody cries;
Where his soul's gone, or how it fares,
Nobody knows and nobody cares.

          On a tombstone dated 1742 in Newbury, England


Photo by Brian Donnelly (click to enlarge)


The third group of epitaphs comment on how the poor souls died.

Here lies the body of our Anna
Done to death by a banana
It wasn't the fruit that laid her low
But the skin of the thing that made her go.

          The tombstone of Anna Hopewell in Enosburg Falls, Vermont

His foot is slipt
and he did fall.
"Help; Help" he cried
and that was all.

          The tombstone of Joseph Crapp in Mylor Churchyard, Cornwall, England

First a Cough
Carried Me Off
Then a Coffin
They Carried Me Off In

          On a tombstone in Boston, Massachusetts

Here lies the body
of Jonathan Blake
Stepped on the gas
Instead of the brake.

          On a tombstone in a Uniontown, Pennsylvania cemetery


A fond "Good-bye" to Elijah Jefferson Bond, inventor of the Ouija Board.
Photo by Something Original


I think of this last group as the "happily ever after" epitaphs.

Here lies the body
Of Margaret Bent
She kicked up her heels
And away she went.

          Margaret Bent's epitaph in Winterborn Steepleton Cemetery, Dorsetshire

Here I at length repose,
My spirit now at aise is;
With the tips of my toes
And the point of my nose
Turned up to the roots of the daisies.

          Teague O'Brian penned his own final words as a limerick, in
          a Ballyporeen, Ireland churchyard

Under the sod and under the trees
Lies the body of Jonathan Pease.
He is not here, there's only the pod:
Pease shelled out and went to God.

          On a grave from the 1880's in Nantucket, Massachusetts

Sacred to the memory of Miss Martha Gwynn,
Who was so very pure within.
She burst the outer shell of sin.
And hatched herself a cherubim.

          The tombstone of Martha Gwynn at St. Alban's cemetery


Photo by Wildhartlivie


Add your own epitaph poem to the DMC cemetery... er, padlet HERE. This week's daily ditties featured work by Molly Hogan, Robyn Hood Black, Kathryn Apel, and Jane Yolen.

At the end of February, one lucky participant will win a copy of Last Laughs: Prehistoric Epitaphs by J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen, illustrated by Jeffrey Stewart Timmins (Charlesbridge, 2017).

Sally Murphy wouldn't be caught dead missing out on Poetry Friday. Here she is hosting this week's Poetry Friday roundup!

DMC: "Last Move" by Jane Yolen





LAST MOVE

I paid my dues,
No more to lose.
This show will be
A six-foot snooze.


© 2018 Jane Yolen. All rights reserved.


Click HERE to read this month's interview with J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen. They have challenged us to write an epitaph poem—a funny or clever verse that might appear on your chosen subject's tombstone.

Post your poem on our February 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, February 23rd, and one lucky participant will win a copy of their morbidly humorous collection from Charlesbridge: