In response to the many kind readers who have written gentle reminders to the effect that I’m not funny and they hate me, I am turning today’s edition over to two other writers who have written extremely funny poetry without even knowing it.
Our first author is named June Johnson. I do not know who she is, but her books of poetry are in the Americana section of the Special Collections at BYU’s Harold B. Lee Library. The poems are reprinted here exactly as she wrote them.
First we have “The Bee,” a short, thought-provoking poem that examines the nature of man and which also talks about bees.
Why does the bird cry?
Why does the bee
sing and sting?
Why am I, I?
What made me, Me?
* * *
Ms. Johnson’s next poem is called “My Beloved Indian Chief,” and it contains language that is now considered “politically incorrect.” Specifically, it makes reference to an “Indian Chief,” when the term currently preferred is “Native American Chairperson.”
My Beloved Indian Chief
I came to you out of the night,
startling as a beam of light.
You were sick lonely and afraid,
and I came to your aid.
I warmed you and caressed you
with love and light,
Now you stand so tall and strong
and I wonder what’s wrong?
Have you found a battle we all must fight,
hidden deep inside you, out of sight?
I hope so, I hope so, my beloved Indian Chief, because I know you’ll win!
* * *
Indeed. Our second author is anonymous. He was a BYU student who wrote a book of poems and left it behind when he moved out of his apartment. It was sent to me by the next tenant, who knows a good book of poetry when he sees one and kept this one anyway.
The first poem is called “Love or Love ‘Sick,’ ” and it employs clever wordplay such as one might find in a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, or perhaps a Bazooka Joe comic.
Love or Love “Sick”
Are Eleanor & I going to the dance?
The truth is I feel I don’t have the chance!
one week ago I gave her a pink rose.
Now when she sees me, she runs on her toes.
It’s not like I’m only looking for romance.
I just wish the girl would give me a chance.
She gives me a Valentine every night.
I receive it, scream “man I’m in a plight
So all you bucks thinking of charming some does.
Just be careful or else you’ll all look like smoes.
* * *
And the last thing you want is to look like a smoe.
Our final chunk of poetry comes from the same nameless author (we’re calling him Smoey Smonson) and it is also on the subject of romance. It bears the title “Lee ‘I Love You’ — Alison,” and I don’t understand the punctuation in that title, either. It seems to have been written from a woman’s point of view. You will notice the author’s penetrating insight into the female psyche.
Lee “I Love You” — Alison
Lee I’m going to be very simple!
What is it, do I have a hairy pimple?
I don’t mean to sound cold.
but c’mon be a little bold.
I put hearts all over your bed.
They we’re the color of love, that’s red.
I am sorry, I don’t mean to diss.
But what’s taking so long for the Kiss.
Marriage isn’t my only thought.
I want kids, yes alot!
* * *
I hope this collection of poetry has been enlightening. I don’t mean to diss, but compared to these poets, Robert Frost was just a smoe with a hairy pimple.
These poems had already appeared at www.WeMadeOutInATreeAnd ThisOldGuySatAndWatchedUs.com, which means I was recycling material. In my defense, though, even among regular visitors to my main Web site, WeMadeOut.com was not regular viewing material, and it was substantially less so with Herald readers (which is who "Snide Remarks" was written for, you'll recall).
I believe the word he was trying to use was "schmoes," plural of "schmo" (or "schmoe"), which is slang for "jerk." Merriam-Webster's lists it as "origin unknown" and as having appeared in 1947.
All that said, this is a terrible column. I distinctly recall the circumstances under which I wrote it: terrible, terrible panic. It was Thursday at about 3; I had to have something in by 5; and I had NO IDEAS. This was sheer desperation. Bleh.