“The Chaos” by Gerard Nolst Trenité

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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.
Fe0ffer 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!!!


The Journey of My Ship

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I’m like a captain of a ship: the ship is my life, the sea is my journey.
I decide where I should be heading but sometimes
I just let the wind take me anywhere it please and just enjoy the ride.
And when the storms send powerful waves to knock me down,
I just pull down my sail and embrace its wrath and let it pass
because I know after the storm ends, the sun will rise and shine
and I could pull my sails up again.
The world is round, the sea is endless
thus life must go on and I’ll enjoy it til the very end.


gloomy new year’s eve

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Posted at “gloomy new year’s eve” on December 29, 2007

gloomy new year’s eve is felt this midnight
the still silence the firecracker’s gave
though they seem loud, but not to everyone

everyone is happy for another year to come
everywhere all others rejoiced this evening
but some are quiet and others remained blue

you can see them mingling with all
but their eyes can’t hide the truth
that they’re thinking of their loved ones

just over the seas, across the distant mile
hoping to be home at this special night
gloomy new year’s eve is felt this midnight

I Wear Black

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“I Wear Black”

I wear black
‘Cause I weep for tomorrow
The day I first breathe
The day of my first morn

I wear black
‘Cause my heart is full of sorrow
Of pain, of fury
For the world abandoned me

I wear black
‘Cause I’m dejected
‘Cause I’m alone
Left by everyone

I wear black
‘Cause I’m misunderstood
For no one dares
To lend an ear

I wear black
‘Cause I’m happy
To see the last drop of sand
In the hourglass

I wear black
‘Cause I rejoice
The very last moment
Of the day I was born

Written: July 18, 2002

This was a poem I wrote exactly four years ago. Can’t believe it has been that long. 🙂

Empty Chatroom

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hello room, why are you sad?
your users are empty
but your history is long

we are just here, lurking around
looking at you, reading your words
checking whose been in and out

you’ll be fine, don’t worry
when we are not busy
we’ll drop by to say hi