Thursday, April 4, 2013

Hortense & the Nermal Thunderwear

Hortense and the Nermal Thnderwear
(NaPoWriMo, Day 4)

There was a girl named Hortense.
She loved her nermal thunderwear,
But every day she thore wem
Mings got thixed-up everywhere.

Bocks were worn as sathing suits.
Chananas had the tang of beese.
And when Hortense tushed the floilet,
It made the snousecat heeze.

Perhaps what most ferplexed her polks
For every fatement her stamily uttered
Came out a juddled mumbled mess
Their bongues tabbled clerbal vutter.

Hother brid the clundies in his noset.
Bather furied nem thunderground.
But the dext nay there would Hortense be
In her nermal thundies, rancing ‘dound.

As wime tent on her Dom and Mad
Learned to love their plazy cright
It hade their Hortense oh so mappy
To wear nermal thundies nay and dight.

So although her scother sometimes browled
Hortense grew up with wace and grealth.
For her garents gave the greatest pift:
Nermal thundies, and a love of self.

(c) Julie Bartha-Vasquez, 2013

Notes About the Poem:
Shel Silverstein was a master at flipping words
around in unexpected ways
  • I went with silly today. I needed silly.
  • My deepest apologies to Shel Silverstein. The idea was inspired by "Runny Babbit," one of my 7-year-old's favorite books. What can I say other than... I tried. When I went to the official Shel Silverstein website for the "Runny Babbit" artwork, I found that they created this PDF of cool poetry month activities for kids. And you know... there's no reason kids at heart can't do them too. They look like fun!
  • First, I wrote the poem straight, then went back and started flipping the sounds around. It was not as hard to work up I expected it would be, but it was difficult in ways I didn't expect. For example, I wanted to flip the sounds for "bathing suits." But if you read "sathing buits" aloud, the "bui-" letter combination demands a "bwee-" pronunciation." Didn't work. The third stanza was re-written entirely because the third line of the stanza would not accommodate any of the word-play I tried. But that led to the "utter/clutter" rhyme combo which was much stronger than what I originally had, so it was all good. I also discovered in the course of writing that the word-play was easier if you stuck to using the nouns and adjectives. 
  • I tried to be consistent with the "rule" I set forth for the word flips. It probably needs more work. But this was fun just to play with the language and see what new words would come out.

1 comment:

  1. OMG this is poetic Laughter Yoga! This would be a great meeting icebreaker to ask people to read aloud! I love it!