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Joined: 12/27/2006
Msg: 34
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Ballads and poetic stories please!Page 3 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
The Train©

A fascination in stories of long times ago
Had held my interest for I loved them so
And by one in particular was I enticed
It involved a train and a robbery heist.

The year: Eighteen hundred seventy-six
The heist involved some future convicts
Some say ‘twas Jesse and, his brother, Frank James
Long associated with robbery of trains

It was early in July, the humidity high
With temperature nearly high as the sky
That night a train moved up a long hill
(A plaque marks the spot to this day still)

The robbers above, on a rocky steep bluff,
Above the train tracks – they saw the black puff
Of the smoke and soot the engine spewed out
And the engine labored as it continued its’ route

The passenger train filled with people and gold
Slowed on the grade as onward it rolled
The robbers awaited in their hiding place
Then … jumped on the train, leaving nary a trace

Brazen and daring the gunman strode in
Scaring passengers near out of their skin
Looting jewelry and gold with Colt .44s
Passengers starred at the Colts’ deadly bores.

With the passengers’ cash stuck deep in their jar
The gunmen then stormed the old Express Car
17 grand to the robber’s coffers were fed
(At least that’s what the railway accountants had said)

Two of the trainmen, these gunmen shot dead
As Colt .44’s spit out their hot lead
The shooting of trainmen had not been a need
Maybe ‘twas an extension of their gluttonous greed

But the robbers? … they all got away clean
And were never-after there again seen
At least not alive – but there’s rumors about
Of a ghostly white train still running that route

And late at night on a warm summer eve
When the moon is full, the moonbeams will weave
A long moving image in the moonlight
Of a white misted train there shining bright

Some people swear … some people believe
‘Tis those ghostly trainmen who want to retrieve
Their lives that were taken back in ‘76
And through replacements that wrong to be fixed

Now it is said, on those long moonlight nights
When the train runs the track and the fear it incites
The ghostmen still look for those to imbue
And replace themselves within their venue.

And eternally thereafter those they’ve replaced
Will ride the ghost train forever encased
In misty white shades of ghostly white hues
And the curse of The Train within them abuse.

If the rumor be true, here’s a word for the wise:
I’d not be near train tracks under night skies
‘Cause the story of Jesse that I’ve told to you
Every last word of that story is true!

If I were you and had to travel at night
Some date in July when the moon’s shining bright
Down around Otterville, with your ears in a strain
Listen intently … and you’ll hear: The Train.
Joined: 12/25/2006
Msg: 36
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From Vik To Valhalla
Posted: 1/26/2007 10:25:33 PM
A short story written some time ago, when in a contemplative mood.

From Vik To Valhalla

The Saga of Ollie Daneson

They sat within the smoke filled room
Clutching mugs of warm mulled ale,
They spoke of Hero’s, and their doom,
And ghosts that roamed beyond the pale.

Then came the cry as the bard called out.
“Silence! To you I've a tale to tell”
“The Vik of Ollie Daneson, hear me out.
Of how he fought and how he fell. "

Not a sound was heard from within the Hall,
As the teller of Sagas took his place.
A hundred warriors had heard the call.
They moved aside to give him space

The mead maids filled their mugs with Ale
Then took their places on the seats.
The warriors roared, the Bard to hail,
Then settled to hear of the Daneson’s feats.

The Bard then slowly raised his head
And gazed on those assembled there.
Filled with Ale, with soup and bread.
His tale with them he began to share.

“Hear me now, and my tale I’ll tell
Of Longships tall and a Warriors might
Of Viking men, they lived and died well.
How the Hero, the Daneson, fell that night.

He sallied forth, in the eye of the storm,
To raid upon the English shore
Three hundred men his force did form
With dreams of plunder, of gold and more.

Five Dragon ships sailed that day
The masts stood tall, the sails unfurled.
A raven swooped and marked the way
On Danesons sail a serpent curled.

Carved into the prow a fearsome worme.
It’s painted eyes appeared to glow,
Wide open jaws, a smile was formed
Striking terror wherever it goes.

The oars dipped into the churning sea,
Turned east towards the English shore.
The wind it howled into their lee
Steadfast he stood to the steering oar

Two days of sailing around the shore,
They found a place where they could land.
Hauled up their ships, to rocks they moored,
The Daneson gathered his men around.

"Today we’ll raid the town of York
We’re a hundred leagues from the English force.
‘Tis filled with gold I’ve heard the talk.
So gather your arms lets set our course"

They marched into the misty dawn
Toward the object of their desire
Today the mothers of York would mourn,
They’d raise the town with Odin’s fire.

Two leagues out from their landing place,
A panicked cry sprang from the wood.
There stood a Bondsman, fear on his face
He tried to run but it was no good.

They followed him to his village near.
Twenty met them with pike and rake,
They Battled in the village square
Danesons men, their lives did take.

They could not risk a general alarm
Reaching the town of York
They slaughtered all, none escaped harm
Dead peasants would never talk

They sacked and looted all that was there.
Then fired the village, burned to the ground
There was not enough loot for them to share,
So they drank all the ale and mead they found.

At last they arrived at the town of York
Prepared to attack, to take by surprise
To capture the gold and the slaves they sought
When from the Town came a rallying cry

A thousand troops came marching forth
At their head rode the Saxon King
Cross bearing monks, led the march from the north
Prayers for victory to their God they did sing.

The Norsemen spread out and drew their swords
Shields and axes flashed in the sun.
They had no fear of these English Lords,
From this rabble army they would not run.

The Pikemen charged the Danesons men
With shouts of derision they stood their ground.
Sixty men died on that bloody Fen
The screams of the dying rang over the town

A duel of Archers followed that skirmish
And English longbows soon found their place
The Vikings retreated, left five who were finished.
Then turned and regrouped, the English to face

Five hundred came charging on horse and on foot
Knights with their lances, footmen with swords.
Determined that no one would sack or loot
The Holiest places located in York

Ollie the Daneson, a Berserkers son
He roared as within his blood started to boil
He stood there half naked under the sun.
Determined his blood not stain English soil

He drew from its scabbard his two handed sword.
Odin! He screamed as he practiced his swing.
Stepped forward to meet the oncoming hoard
Of this days battle great Sagas they’d sing.

With ringing of steel they clashed on that field.
The Norsemen and Yoemen each gave of their best.
Ollie’s great broadsword sliced all that would yield
Dispatching the English to eternal rest.

He slashed and he parried, no one could match
A Berserker in battle a man with no fear
King Ethelred saw, could do nothing but watch,
Five hundred slaughtered, his eye shed a tear.

The English retreated to the top of the hill
As the sun slowly sank in the west
The Vikings regrouped to kill or be killed
To the end of the fight they would give of their best

A Kingsman came forward white kerchief in hand
He shouted he carried King Ethelred’s word
The Daneson came forward and tall he did stand
Cross his shoulder he rested his sword.

“The King do'st admire the valour you’ve shown
This day on this great bloody field.
The King does desire when sun greets the dawn
You be gone, or lay down your weapons and yield.”

The Dane turned his head, spat blood on the ground,
Then said to the Kingsman before him.
“ A Norseman won’t yield to battles great sound,
No matter how things would look grim”

“I’ll carry your words to the rest of my men
I will not warrant the tone of reply.
I’ll heed what they say twixt now and then
And perhaps? Tomorrow we’ll die."

He returned and around him gathered his troop,
Of three hundred all but sixty were slain
He knew if they stayed, there’d be little hope
That they’d see a red sunset again.

They gathered their weapons, walked into the woods
Marched back to their ships by the shore.
Four they destroyed, they burned where they stood.
The Dragonship sailing for home once more.

But the Gods had decided that they’d not return.
They whipped up a mighty great storm
Thor’s thunder roared, Odin’s light burned,
And waves crashed down on the Worme

He lay upon the sunlit beach,
Waves gently rocked him back and forth.
Hand reaching out, as if to reach
To drag him up to the shore

Around him driftwood lay scattered there
Crushed and splintered by the sea.
Unseeing eyes, they seemed to stare
At remnants of what he used to be.

No memory of the storm last night,
The waves had crashed across the deck
The Gods had raged, Thor’s lightning bright
Had caught the mast of that tiny speck

With a mighty roar He’d drawn his sword
And raised it to the blackened sky
Challenged the gods, his strength restored,
West wind answered with a mournful cry

His crew was filled with Viking Zeal
As against the waves they went to war
Across their heads the thunder peeled,
The Longship was pointed to the shore.

They’d ride the waves down to the shore,
A big one caught them across the beam,
Rolled them over, the crew were no more
His ears were filled with the drowning scream

Tied to mast, t’would pull him down
He tried to cut the binding rope
If he failed he knew that he would drown
Sink to the bottom without a hope

Splintered decking struck his head
As he cut the masthead from his back
Crashing waves filled him with dread
Last thing he saw was the lightning crack.

The sun rose higher, seagulls screeched
As they hovered over the lifeless form
They did not care how his end was reached
To them he was flotsam of the storm

The sunlight glinted from the sand
The seagulls wheeled with one accord.
There clutched tightly in his hand,
Was the shining blade of his mighty Sword.

Odin looked down and saw him there
Saw that he’d died with sword in hand
Announced to Valhalla this man would share
The finest there is in Summerland.

He sits within the mighty halls
Of Asggard, drinking the finest meads.
His sword and shield adorn the walls.
Remembers with pride his greatest deeds

The Bard turned then to the silent Hall
And gazed upon their silent faces
A Viking stood at six foot tall
Every one shuffled in their places.

He smiled as he lifted his jug of Ale
“A toast to the Saga of Ollie Daneson.”
“A toast to the Bard for his mighty tale.”
“To Odin a toast from Ollie’s grandson.”

The Meadhall rose with one accord
Lifted their Jugs with a mighty roar.
“The saga of Ollie Daneson, banging jugs upon the board
“May he rest then sail among us once more”.

They drank his health till morning light
Made merry there within the Hall
With many songs, the occasional fight
Then one by one fell drunk to the floor.

Robin A Spicer (Huntingwulf) © 2003-07-05
Joined: 12/27/2006
Msg: 37
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Ballads and poetic stories please!
Posted: 1/27/2007 8:05:14 AM
The Cave©

I’ll not take your time, beyond what the need,
To relate to you a story and deed
As there’s no one else to plea this decree …
For I am the only survivor, you see.

I’m an old man, and my mind’s full of mist
But details of that night in my mind still exist
As vivid and clear, as sharp and exact
Of the precise moment the beast had attacked!

When I was young, and adventure routine,
With excitement and newness still unforeseen
I was eager to spread my wings to the world
And seek more adventures as those wings unfurled

Within my long travels I happened to meet
Two other men, making our friendships replete
One was named Beckett, the other one Flynn
And better friends there never have been.

Beckett was tall – an athletic type
While Flynn, the scholar, more fond of pinstripe
Pinstripe or athlete – it mattered not
It was our essence together and that which it wrought.

Engaged were we in all daring do
High on the mountains, and under seas, too,
We crossed dry deserts, and jungles of green
And other adventures there in between.

We’d been together, it was our sixth year,
And still our adventures made us cohere
To every madness – to every rave …
Until we decided to enter The Cave.

We discussed the encounter and planning for weeks
And assembled equipment – some new, some antiques
Until at last the day it arrived …
And our excitement? It still had survived.

We traveled in Flynn’s new “customized” Jeep
Instead of driving in my old rusted heap,
And good thing we did, for the road was quite rough
The last part of the trip, the going was tough.

The map we used, was bought from a guide
Who had told my friend, Flynn: “Don’t go inside”
When he had learned of our journey’s intent
To go into The Cave, and begin our descent.
The guides’ words, had given us pause
When we thought: What was his reason or cause?
But … dismissed were his words of advice
We had each other … and that would suffice.

With our ropes and lanterns and other such gear
It was into The Cave we then disappeared.
The light from our lanterns speared into the dark
We spoke very little and made no remark.

Onward, downward, in blackness we went
Placing out markers for our later ascent
The sounds of our footsteps, and scraping of walls
Reverberated ‘round us – as echoed recalls

In about three hours, or maybe ‘twas four
We encountered water on The Cave floor
And there all around were such beautiful shapes
Never had we seen such gorgeous landscapes

Stalactites, stalagmites and mineral mounds
And dripping water with their “plopping” sounds
Pinks, violets and shades of green hues
A few sightless salamanders made their debuts

We found a small dry spot and then we assessed
This was a place we could stop now to rest.
I set down my lantern, and took off my hat,
When Beckett said: “Hey. Did you just hear that?”

I moved not a muscle, and my ears went to strain.
All I could hear were the droplets, like rain.
And from The Cave’s bowels …I heard it then
I continued to listen – then heard it again.

We looked at each other, but said not a word
Confused and startled by what we’d just heard
It wasn’t a moan, it wasn’t a gasp
But more rather like a guttural rasp

One thing was certain, it wasn’t a stone
That could create sounds while standing alone
T’was our discussion, from which to derive:
The source of the sound was something … alive.

Then from The Cave’s deepened black hole
Came again sounds from a source with no soul
The sound was menacing, and one I despise,
I watched the fear grow within my friends’ eyes.

Instinctively, we three then moved as one
In that instant – our re-ascent had begun
I had been last in the line coming down
I’d be the first to reach the “above-ground”.

Quickly my feet in the lead, lead the way
Flynn, right behind had nothing to say
My friend Beckett, brought up the rear
And in that position had the greatest to fear

The lamp on my hat pierced through the black
And I looked for our markers that would lead us back
To save our strength, nothing was said
Again came that sound that filled me with dread.

The sound became louder and closer it be
And I moved faster through the black before me
I could hear Flynn’s breathing, so close behind
I tried to concentrate on the markers to find

Somewhere behind me, then snarls I heard
Loud and vicious, run together and blurred
Close … so close … the beast was so near
Adrenalin rushed through me to react to my fear

T’was then I was hit with an overpowering stench
The smell caused my stomach to turn and to wrench
The odor blew past me, and I knew t’was the breath
Of the beast of The Cave – its’ stench of death.

I was near running, but down on all fours
Sweat was streaming from all of my pores.
Then I heard those terrible screams
The ones I keep hearing in all of my dreams

It was Beckett I knew in his shocked agony
Midst the snarled snapping of jaws I can’t see
I heard bones cracking and squishing of flesh
And the fear within me gave new strength afresh

My fingers were raw from grabbing at rock
But on moving forward my mind had its’ lock
My stomach still queasy from the stench of the beast
I knew he was finishing his beastly feast

I knew, too, t’was only a matter of time
When the beast would return. I had to climb!
I heard Flynn say: “IT’S COMING AGAIN!”
Again was a surge of my fear deep within.

I heard once more the beast from behind
And fought the panic taking over my mind
Something heavy struck against The Cave’s walls
The kind of sounds that ghastly appalls:

A scraping of talons of heavy clawed feet
Caused my heart to double its’ beat
I had the feeling that Flynn lagged behind
I screamed my urgings loud and maligned:

“Flynn! Flynn! Catch up to me!”
But took not the time to look back and see
For the sounds of the beasts’ crashing against The Cave’s face
Told me it neared – and was gaining the race

My knee hit a rock, my balance was lost!
I fell to the ground, and then feared the cost
In losing the time in scrambling free
Again sheer panic stabbed into me.

In less than an instant, Flynn was there too,
His face in my light was of a strange hue
And as he helped me get back to my feet …
Flynn turned around – t’was the beast there to meet.

The stench overwhelming, but the sight was much worse
For standing before us: The malignant curse
Of overlapping scales in shades of dark gray
The rest of its’ body concealed in umbrae

But its’ eyes … its’ eyes … I’ll never forget
Rheumatoid yellow, and deeply inset
Its’ reptilian lids blinked just one time
‘Fore its’ lips peeled back revealing the slime

Glistening yellow over dagger-like teeth
Then oozed from its’ mouth to fall there beneath.
The beast reared up, then we saw its’ claws
Sharp and deadly within its’ forepaws

Towering above us, no sound the beast made
On beams of our light had his gaze stayed.
Unexpectedly Flynn then turned and faced me
With less blinding light, the beast could again see

Why Flynn had turned I never will know
For the beast bit him in two, at his torso
And I was looking at Flynn – direct in his face
When the beasts’ bite his life did erase.

I screamed, and instantly away did I run
Away from the beast, and dead companion
Through the price of Flynn’s life, more time had been bought
To reach The Cave’s entrance – the goal that I sought

Running wildly, several times did I fall
But toppling did not my mission forestall
The beast I knew still somewhere behind
Drove me on forward with my besieged mind

I heard its’ clawed talons scraping the wall
And prayed I’d not again stumble and fall
Then, up ahead, a small opening I viewed
And I saw my chance, and hope there exude

Twelve feet … six feet … then it was three
But the beast and its’ stench was there behind me
I dove through the rock opening, scraping my head
But better that injury than ending up dead

I was elated, and about to rejoice
I then heard a scream – it was my own voice!
In my leg erupted intense blinding pain
Looking down I saw the bloodstain

My leg, through the opening, still was stuck out
There was but split-seconds, before I’d lose it no doubt
I pulled my leg back, and in but a flash
My shoe was removed by a clawed talon slash

I crawled back from the opening, then I could see
My wound was deep, from ankle to knee
Then suddenly through the opening came
A clawed talon whose aim was to maim

I quickly withdrew out of its’ reach
As the claws extended through the openings’ breech
The opening too small, for continued rampage
And the beast began then to voice its’ outrage

It’s deafening roars assaulted my ears
Echoed through Cave chambers and my mind there cohere
I began attending unto my grave wound
Knowing I now was no longer marooned.

T’was another hour ‘fore I crawled out The Cave
But many days ‘fore I shed the shockwave
Of what had transpired, and what I had seen
And my damaged leg was lost to gangrene.

Now sleep evades me, for my horrible dreams
Show beams of light, and unearthly screams
Of Beckett and Flynn and The Cave we were in
I know tonight, I’ll re-live it again.

So, now you’ve the story, you’ve heard the deed
I swear is the truth I’ve herein decreed
And Beckett and Flynn are enslaved in their grave
And I lost my leg to the beast of … The Cave.
Joined: 12/27/2006
Msg: 39
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Ballads and poetic stories please!
Posted: 1/28/2007 12:49:08 PM
The entry below is an exchange between two veterans of indeterminate county. And ... they question why it was they fought and a way to help assure no others will again engage in the struggles of their experiences.

Do You, Nathaniel?©

Do you hear the guns, Nathaniel?
Lying there so loud within our memory.
Do you smell the smoke, Nathaniel?
Drifting in the air in memory to see.

Do you feel the wounds, Nathaniel?
Living in the pain of your reality
Do you see “the cause”, Nathaniel?
For which we fought oh so gallantly.

Do you feel betrayed, Nathaniel?
When we found “the cause” was not for liberty
Do you hear the words, Nathaniel?
That said “the cause” was really gluttony.

Do you still bleed, Nathaniel?
For loss of things that always used to be.
Do you still care, Nathaniel?
To reinstate our homelands’ liberties.

For if you do, Nathaniel,
Then it’s to the homeland that we both so love
We must provide involvement
To make the lion lay down with the lonely dove.
Joined: 12/25/2006
Msg: 43
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The Battle
Posted: 2/5/2007 5:20:13 AM


The Battle

I have walked amongst you for many years
Observed the way that man has grown
I have shared your laughter shed your tears
Seen the day of your death, the day you were born

I walked among you at the dawn of time
When they say that the Gods walked on the earth
I was but a youth, a young man in his prime
When dark shadows of evil came ‘cross my hearth.

An Army of evil came down from the North
They had plundered and burned, all that lay in their path
Dark smoke hid the sun, when they rallied forth
To all they encountered brought horror and death.

At their head rode a General, a Demons black soul
On the back of a stallion spawned out of hell
His voice was like thunder, eyes glowing red coals
From his mighty great axe brave men died where they fell.

He came to the south with his great evil horde
Though mountains and valleys he slaughtered and raged
He did not take captives all fell to the sword
He unleashed his demons and Hellhounds uncaged.

He came to our Kingdom to the valley below
His black armies spread like rivers in flood
He called on our warriors their courage to show
He promised by nightfall fields covered with blood.

We gathered our Army just three thousand all
We took up our arms sharpened axes and swords
From towns and villages they answered the call
Deep in their hearts, they feared his words.

We faced his army come morning sun
Three thousand peasants stood against ten
Proudly we marched to the beat of the drum
We’d never surrender we would fight to the end.

The Evil came forward on his great demon Stallion
His black amour seemed to eat up the light
Behind him a roar from his great Demon Battalions
Shouting and screaming, eager to fight.

As they came forward banging their shields.
The earth seemed to shudder beneath our feet
It shook and it heaved crops swayed in the fields
From deep underground came a different drumbeat.

As the enemy charged across wide open space
A scream did arise from within the ground
A deep chasm widening spread across that place
They charged into that hole with a terrible sound.

Then with great roar as a great slamming door
The canyon it closed over their graves.
We lay there in fear our minds filled with awe
As we realized today we would not be slaves.

We returned to our homes our families and friends.
A great feast in the Mead hall ‘til rising sun
None could explain how the battle did end
Defeat turned to Victory in the bright morning sun.

At dawn I was leaving, the mead spun my head
I saw in a corner held back from the crowd
An old man dressed in white, a cowl covered his head
Ancient but, straight-backed, standing so proud.

He smiled as he saw me staring his way
He raised up his staff, the crystal it glowed
The light was so blinding I felt myself sway.
The Ancient said, “Peace”, he was gone nothing showed.

At the dawning of time, when Gods walked among men
When Magic, and wonder all men could see.
A great Demon Lord, was brought to his doom
A wizened old Wizard brought freedom and peace.

Robin A Spicer © June 1, 2004
Joined: 2/19/2006
Msg: 44
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The Battle
Posted: 3/11/2007 12:25:57 AM
Deirdre 3/11/07

Her beauty was a legend from her birth
Cathbad the druid prophesied a war
to force three high born warriors from their hearth
all for her grey-green eyes and ruby hair

all this because Naoise saw her shining
washing her lovely face with morning dew
and ever after for her he was pining (this part is poetic liscense)
and so the fateful tale that would ensue

Conchobar had her brought up in seclusion
to marry him when she had come of age
but all his plans would come to no conclusion
when she eloped with handsome Naoise

His brothers sons of Uisnech with them fled
to Scotland, but they could never rest
the kings would kill to seek Deirde's bed
they hid upon an island they thought best

Conchobars trackers had their party found
deceitfully he welcomed them back home
safe conduct and an escort he sent round
then he sent spies upon the path they came

he asked if Deirdre's beauty had been lost
her nursemaid tried to save her and she lied
but Deirdres beauty still was Irelands boast
outnumbered, Naoise and his brothers died

Conchobar could not win fair Deirdres love
he gifted Naoises killer with her hand
but Deirdre managed still to rise above
and never did she wear the wedding band

Deirdre dashed her head against a rock
by leaning from her chariot aside
her death to Conchobar was a great mock
no longer was she anybodys bride

Joined: 2/19/2006
Msg: 45
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The Battle
Posted: 3/11/2007 12:31:14 AM
The curates wife

the story of the love affair
that had terrorized the land
the confession that the curates wife
was killed by the bishops hand!

So long ago they found her dead
folk had near forgotten
if she'd only shunned the bishops bed
for he was truly rotten

'twas a long forgotten mystery
who'd killed the curates wife
but now it leapt from history
to wreck the bishops life

they sent him down to Londontown
to a jury of his peers
he'd been a man of great renown
too rich for petty fears

but now he'd pay for his own sin
the townsfolk threatened riot
the sherrif forced to bring him in
the courtroom deathly quiet

the bishop ran quite out of luck
they sentenced him to hanging
a noose would soon be round his neck
at end of gavel's banging

they came around for many a mile
than cold November morn
the bishop hung upon the hill
and so the tale was born

LS 1/26/07

This was made up, from first, last....on a sloooow night.....
Joined: 2/19/2006
Msg: 47
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The Battle
Posted: 3/23/2007 9:37:50 PM
well, no one gets killed here, though dad's pride took a slight beating.....

Ballad of dad

I have a story about the wood
my dad wouldn't let sleeping dogs lie
though we warned him he probably should
he kept bringing it up, oh my

you just don't want to hear
about your dad's sex life
but he wouldn't be quiet I fear
because he'd gotten a young wife

but being the age he was
his tool wasn't always as "sharp"
we unfortunately knew this because
upon the damn subject he'd harp

he bought growth hormones from an ad
(on this he was mercifully silent)
eleven month later he was a dad
of a beautiful female infant

He was seventy May of last year
my sister just turned eight
and although she is a dear
poor dad has alot on his plate

mother nature always knows best
for reference just think of my dad
he should have given his woody a rest
and now he wishes he had

but my sister is such a neat kid
and on that fact we all agree
on retirement dad tightened the lid
and turned the house husband key

LS 3/13/07
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