Today's poems [5.8.19]
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ENGLISH IS TOUGH STUFF
Dearest creature in creation,
Study English pronunciation.
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.
I will keep you, Suzy, busy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy.
Tear in eye, your dress will tear.
So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.
Just compare heart, beard, and heard,
Dies and diet, lord and word,
Sword and sward, retain and Britain.
(Mind the latter, how it's written.)
Now I surely will not plague you
With such words as plaque and ague.
But be careful how you speak:
Say break and steak, but bleak and streak;
Cloven, oven, how and low,
Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe.
Hear me say, devoid of trickery,
Daughter, laughter, and Terpsichore,
Typhoid, measles, topsails, aisles,
Exiles, similes, and reviles;
Scholar, vicar, and cigar,
Solar, mica, war and far;
One, anemone, Balmoral,
Kitchen, lichen, laundry, laurel;
Gertrude, German, wind and mind,
Scene, Melpomene, mankind.
Billet does not rhyme with ballet,
Bouquet, wallet, mallet, chalet.
Blood and flood are not like food,
Nor is mould like should and would.
Viscous, viscount, load and broad,
Toward, to forward, to reward.
And your pronunciation's OK
When you correctly say croquet,
Rounded, wounded, grieve and sieve,
Friend and fiend, alive and live.
Ivy, privy, famous; clamour
And enamour rhyme with hammer.
River, rival, tomb, bomb, comb,
Doll and roll and some and home.
Stranger does not rhyme with anger,
Neither does devour with clangour.
Souls but foul, haunt but aunt,
Font, front, wont, want, grand, and grant,
Shoes, goes, does. Now first say finger,
And then singer, ginger, linger,
Real, zeal, mauve, gauze, gouge and gauge,
Marriage, foliage, mirage, and age.
Query does not rhyme with very,
Nor does fury sound like bury.
Dost, lost, post and doth, cloth, loth.
Job, nob, bosom, transom, oath.
Though the differences seem little,
We say actual but victual.
Refer does not rhyme with deafer.
Foeffer does, and zephyr, heifer.
Mint, pint, senate and sedate;
Dull, bull, and George ate late.
Scenic, Arabic, Pacific,
Science, conscience, scientific.
Liberty, library, heave and heaven,
Rachel, ache, moustache, eleven.
We say hallowed, but allowed,
People, leopard, towed, but vowed.
Mark the differences, moreover,
Between mover, cover, clover;
Leeches, breeches, wise, precise,
Chalice, but police and lice;
Camel, constable, unstable,
Principle, disciple, label.
Petal, panel, and canal,
Wait, surprise, plait, promise, pal.
Worm and storm, chaise, chaos, chair,
Senator, spectator, mayor.
Tour, but our and succour, four.
Gas, alas, and Arkansas.
Sea, idea, Korea, area,
Psalm, Maria, but malaria.
Youth, south, southern, cleanse and clean.
Doctrine, turpentine, marine.
Compare alien with Italian,
Dandelion and battalion.
Sally with ally, yea, ye,
Eye, I, ay, aye, whey, and key.
Say aver, but ever, fever,
Neither, leisure, skein, deceiver.
Heron, granary, canary.
Crevice and device and aerie.
Face, but preface, not efface.
Phlegm, phlegmatic, ass, glass, bass.
Large, but target, gin, give, verging,
Ought, out, joust and scour, scourging.
Ear, but earn and wear and tear
Do not rhyme with here but ere.
Seven is right, but so is even,
Hyphen, roughen, nephew Stephen,
Monkey, donkey, Turk and jerk,
Ask, grasp, wasp, and cork and work.
Pronunciation -- think of Psyche!
Is a paling stout and spikey?
Won't it make you lose your wits,
Writing groats and saying grits?
It's a dark abyss or tunnel:
Strewn with stones, stowed, solace, gunwale,
Islington and Isle of Wight,
Housewife, verdict and indict.
Finally, which rhymes with enough --
Though, through, plough, or dough, or cough?
Hiccough has the sound of cup.
My advice is to give up!!!
-- B. Shaw
A musical lady from China
Stretched catgut across her vagina
The result of this trick
(With a well-rosined prick)
Was _Toccata and Fugue in D minor_
There was a young golfer named Lear
Who went to jail for a year
For an act quite obscene:
On the very first green
Under a sign saying "Enter course here."
The Dr. Seuss Purity Test
Have you done it on a boat?
Have you done it with a goat?
Have you done it in a bed?
Have you done it with the dead?
Have you done it in the ass?
Have you done it, high on grass?
Have you done it in the car?
Have you simply gone too far?
Have you done it on the beach?
Have you done it with the teach?
Have you done it on your back?
Have you done it strapped to a rack?
Have you done it in a box?
Have you done it with a fox?
Have you done it in a tree?
Have you done it with more than three?
Have you done it in the rain?
Have you done it for the pain?
Have you done it 'tween the tits?
Have you done it wearing mitts?
Have you done it packed in rubber?
Have you done it undercover?
Have you done it on a perch?
Have you done it in a church?
Have you done it with a virgin?
Have you done it with a sturgeon?
Have you done it with ropes and chains?
Have you done it while insane?
Have you done it on the stage?
Have you done it underage?
Have you done it with all your friends?
Have you done it in both ends?
Have you done it with your dog?
Have you done it on a log?
Have you done it under clamps?
Have you done it with the lamps?
Have you done it without style?
Have you done it up a mile?
Have you done it for all to see?
Have you ever had VD?
Have you done it on Mother's couch?
Have you done it in your mouth?
Have you done it while on tape?
Have you done it out of shape?
Have you done it on live TV?
Have you done it whilst you pee?
Have you done it in the gym?
Have you done it on a whim?
Have you done it on a dare?
Do you really think we care?
Answer these and count your "no"s,
pray this number never grows.
Fifty questions we asked thee,
score times two is thy Purity.
A virile young man of Touraine
Had vesicles no one could drain.
With an unbroken flow
Thrice the course he would go,
Then roll over and start in again.
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