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  #1  
Unread 07-19-2019, 05:09 AM
Jim Hayes Jim Hayes is offline
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Location: Kilkenny, Kilkenny, Ireland
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Default In Vino Veritas

In Vino Veritas

Rewrite

The annual dinner was nearly over;
the fifth post-prandial toast
left still at the table attentive and sober:
Not Arthur the affable host-

the uncle who eighteen months ago
was found in O’Reilly’s bed.
Was O’Reilly there ? We’ll never know,
but that’s what the whispers said.

Not cousin Millicent, said to woo
Benny the local barber,
the butcher, the baker as well as the crew
off every ship in the harbor.

Not older brother whose wife agreed
he had served a term for fraud
to which he muttered; “Ah pay no heed,
sure I married a drunken bawd”.

Not Aunty Molly reduced to tears
hearing daddy was ‘Uncle’ Pat.
But where the abstemious wall had sprouted ears
and the Widow Cordelia sat.

The cupboard is open with skeletons out,
to everybody’s chagrin
each year they escape the louder they shout
and are harder to push back in.






The dinner was nearly over;
the fifth post-prandial toast
left few at the table sober,
not Arthur the affable host-

the uncle who eighteen months ago
was found in O’Reilly’s bed.
Was O’Reilly there? We’ll never know,
but that’s what the whisper said.

Not cousin Millicent, remarked to woo
Benny the local barber,
the butcher, the baker as well as the crew
off every ship in the harbor.

Not older brother whose wife agreed
he had served a term for fraud
to which he muttered to pay no heed
that he’d married a drunken bawd.

Not Aunty Molly reduced to tears
hearing daddy was ‘Uncle’ Pat.
The abstemious wall sprouted ears
where cousin Cordelia sat.

The cupboard is open, without a doubt
while the skeletons’ fun can begin,
each year, though easier to let out,
all are harder to get back in.

Last edited by Jim Hayes; 07-24-2019 at 06:47 AM.
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  #2  
Unread 07-19-2019, 06:12 AM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Hi Jim,

I do enjoy the dancing rhythms you generate. The story's pretty acid, enough so that I'd hope the gathering is unusual, if not unlikely. Rhymes do their work as well, though I'm not sure you can use ago where I'd expect before, losing the rhyme. At the close, you have to to, and a missing final period (or full stop). Typos.

Cheers,
John

Oh - the title may be apt, but to my ear, the phrase is well-worn enough to have lost definition and character. I'd look for alternatives.
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  #3  
Unread 07-19-2019, 11:16 AM
Jim Hayes Jim Hayes is offline
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Location: Kilkenny, Kilkenny, Ireland
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Thank you John. This is a rewrite of something I wrote a few years back under the title of Aprez Dinner which maybe was a better, or at least fresher, title.
That ended;

The closet is open, without a doubt
which means that our skeleton kin
( for all they are easier to let out)
are harder to push back in.


I wasn’t particularly happy with the ending, it’s not our ‘skeleton kin’ that are let out , so I’ve been looking for an improvement, and I’m still not sure if I’ve got it.

All best
Jim
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Unread 07-19-2019, 01:32 PM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Hi Jim,

In the last stanza, I might change while to so.
How about "Skeleton Meal" as a title? It echoes the close and is suitably macabre.

Cheers,
John
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  #5  
Unread 07-19-2019, 10:19 PM
Vera Ignatowitsch Vera Ignatowitsch is offline
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Location: Canada
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Dark but fun, Jim.

The last stanza, indicating that the skeleton's fun is about to begin, throws me a bit, as it seems they've been having some fun already.

Perhaps:

The cupboard's open, and there's no doubt
they're cavorting our skeleton kin.
Each year they are easier to let out,
and harder to get back in.

Best,
Vera
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  #6  
Unread 07-20-2019, 10:48 PM
Andrew Frisardi Andrew Frisardi is offline
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Hi Jim, I like the spinning out of local color in this, and the rhyming.

A few possible tweaks come to mind:

S2L4: make “whisper” plural?

The next line: I’m not familiar with that usage of “remarked”—is that idiomatic for you? Would a straight-up “rumored” or “believed” be better?

S4L2: I’d add a comma after “fraud.”

I like Vera’s suggestion for the last stanza, which I agree needs to be ironed out more.

Fun and witty, this is. I enjoyed it.

Andrew
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