Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Ballad of Tom Larkin

It is believed that the worst poet to add his graceless touch to the canon of English literature was William Topaz McGonagall. Personally I think McGonagall has been unfairly slandered, as my own first attempts at poetry, late into my high school years, surely out-McGonagall McGonagall.

Below is the first poem I ever really attempted. Is it worse than the work of McGonagall? You be the judge.

Hello there, you all
In places, well, near
Sit yourselves down
And, oh, grab me a beer

The name is Tom Larkin
From the County of Zerkins
Where they all still like wearing
Those nice deerskin jerkins

I’m getting on in my years
As I’m sure you must see
So don’t worry if I leave
For often I must pee

I’m talking to you now
So’s to make you all wise
And to dispel some untruths
And fat ignorant lies

The story I tell
Is of the great world itself
Knowledge I have more
Than any book on the shelf

I’m a learned man
Knowing great heaps of lore
So no question at all
Or I’ll more than just roar

Now getting this knowledge
Is not very hard
For I’ve a TV in here
And a dish in the yard

Every day, you see
In the large world around
Rapes, murders, wars
And strangeness abounds

Over in Asia
The news blew the whistle
Of the Paks and Hindus
And nuclear missiles

We’re all getting scared
‘Bout the terrorist threat
But the Yanks'll sure whip 'em
On that I will bet

And then my own country
Home of the Canuck
Where the best place to fight
Is ice with a puck

Where the French and the English
Do nothing but fight
One calling night day
One calling day night

Then there’s the Russians
Their bloated corpse of a land
Where all money and oil
Is controlled by one hand

Then there’s the Chinese
With their sooty black sky
With two boys to one girl
And a conquering eye

And don’t get me started
‘Bout the faraway Brits
Who, over a game
Lose all of their wits

Now there’s the Yanks
That gods-be-damned nation
Where Presidents and clerks
Try the act of creation

What about them Japs
Way out far East
Where money and tech
Grows like fast rising yeast

I once used to hear
‘Bout how they would buy
Most of the Earth
Then some of the sky

If you need answers
You should just come to me
I know it all
I’m sure you can see

For I am Tom Larkin
Of the County of Zerkins
Where we still like to wear
Our nice deerskin jerkins

And of my great knowledge
It does not come easy
For it I must garner
On my widescreen TV

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