Thursday, April 25, 2013

Izy asks for favorite story in 10 lines

Whoa! Izy has asked for the Cliff's Notes or (in Canada) Cole's Notes version of a favorite story. Cole's Notes and Cliff's Notes were student study guides half a century before the internet, by the way.
Izy isn't just restricting us to one page of prose, however—we have to tell the whole story in a mere ten lines of poetry!
This story, for reasons I won't reveal here, had an enormous impact on my life. I memorized the entire thing and have kept it, more or less complete, in my head ever since. And it was already a poem!
A real toad
I wish I could tell the story in ten lines of the perfect rhyme and rhythm I loved in the original, but I just can't. Not in one day, and this is Day 25 of our April poem-a-day challenge at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads, so it's submit now or perish.

Here, then is one of my all-time favorite stories, distilled into ten lines of very bad verse, but still, I hope, recognizable for what it is.

For those who know nothing of Kipling (egad, do such bounders exist?) this is a short summary of his long poem "Ballad of East and West".

Uh-oh, my horse is stolen! I’ll get it back for you, Dad!
officer’s son rides big old horse to chase his father’s mare
rocky terrain makes overnight ride difficult
big horse, tired and thirsty, falls beside a stream
thief comes back, knocks gun out of son’s hand
much talk about pistols, horses, sons and rocky terrain
son says, “You’re OK, man. Take my other gun.”
thief says, “One for one, you can take my son.”
thief’s son is like buck in spring: no women to see or swoon!
both sons, east and west now equal, return to army
THE END, by Kay Davies, April 25, 2013


Emma Major said...

a summary of a poem, wonderful

Margaret said...

It's like "around the world in 80 seconds" .... this news segment always leaves my head spinning and so does this fast action 10-line summary :)

Ella said...

Wow Kay...great job!
I love your blended thoughts

Fireblossom said...

Kay, you had me utterly confused! I saw the notes for Romeo & Juliet at the top, and thought that was your book! You didn't say otherwise until the small print at the end, so i was reading your poem and going HUH?!???

LOL @ me.

Kay L. Davies said...

@ Shay — Sorry about that. I didn't pay any attention to the name on the picture I used. So I just deleted it now, don't want it to confuse anyone else.

Isadora Gruye said...

I got to admit, I haven't read Kipling.....(hides in shame), but I love your Cliffs Notes. It's smart and fulfilling! Viva la

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Boy, did those horses gallop! excellently done. YAM

Loredana Donovan said...

I love how you condensed this, you did get the whole action story within 10 lines! :)

Kay L. Davies said...

@ Yamini & Loredana
Thanks! I made a big mistake by not identifying the story ahead of the poem, and by the time I changed it, I had confused a great many people.