Friday, November 18, 2011

We Reached The Lucky Seven

(to the tune of The House of the Rising Sun)

Warren ran down barefoot
Ginny knelt and gave me tea
And pulled the rusty cat away
From the hole that was Rafe’s knee.

They set him on the table
Four sharp screams and then none
Ether and the hacksaw blade
He’d reached oblivion.

My hand went for the ether vial
Four inches left, then three
Sweet Ginny kicked me in the shin
Can’t you leave that ether be?

Warren told her keep on stitching
Said drink your tea down, son
I lay staring in the rusty mug
For sweet oblivion.

Image: Mylittlethriftstore.


  1. Tea? That looks like a chamber pot to me!

  2. I look forward to your story on it then!

  3. Posted to dVerse Poets at:

  4. Well that was different! One of my all time favourite songs by a great band [out of north east England]
    On the second reading I went ouch and got a strange look? Nothing new there.
    Strangely amusing.

  5. oh dang...took me back to my sister getting her fingers caught in the hatch back...they were all mangled...and my grandpop tending to her...ugh....nice piece...

  6. I like the rhythm, and the language - short, everyday words, sharpish lines... the urgency of it, and the I's emotion that isn't spelled out - yes, I really like that especially, that emotion is felt but not dwelt on.

  7. This is so intense-- excellent compression and startling turns of emotion-- letting the detail carry meaning. !!! xj

  8. I love this story and how you represent the narrator. I also find your use of detail so effective...and yes, I think that's a chamber pot! That's one heck of a cup of tea.

  9. Wow, this is very startling. And somehow putting it with that tune makes it seem more sinister to me. ' Four sharp screams and then none/ Ether and the hacksaw blade/ You’d reached oblivion' Yikes! I was a little confused about what happened to who...but I think that's my failing, not yours. Thank you too for your detailed comment on my piece. Cheers.

  10. Very nice and rhyme works really well--an "antique" feel (in best sense.) And, of course, idea of music (folk).


  11. I am feeling really twisted because I found this more black humor than horror--not sure if that was the intent or not, but it was the idea of singing it to *any* tune, especially a loaded one like HOTRS, that did it, I think. Great use of rhyme and image throughout, regardless.

  12. Thanks for the visits! I had an idea from Other Mary's comment about how to make the poem clearer and revised it now a little. I've given the knee-injured man a name instead of calling him "you" (e.g., it used to say "From the hole that was your knee/They set you on the table", so I hope it's clearer now who's on the table in stanza 2. Plus I think that'll keep the focus more on the narrator, which had been bugging me.

  13. ha you know...i was mad enough to sing the tunes of the house of the rising sun...sounds GREAT! and brought back some childhood memories as well..

  14. Oh, Claudia, glad I wasn't the only one singing it, and yes, it's almost midnight here.

    This was one visceral, bloodstained mess of a freaking brilliant poem. Song parody? I think not. My mind is now filled with visions of leeches...! GREAT. Thanks for visiting me, because I got to read this! Amy

  15. This is great! The tune of'rising sun'makes it easier and familiar. Though some sufferings are involved here!


  16. reminds me of Robert Frost's Out, Out

  17. Cleverly penned; and I tried singing it to the melody of "House of the Rising Sun."

  18. remarkable, smiles.

    keep up the excellence.

  19. oh ouch... and believe it or not...i sang it to the rising house melody...having an earworm now...smiles

  20. This is really disturbing, but so well written. It fits the ballad form perfectly - as you new it would since it goes with the HOTRS tune perfectly too!

    If it were my poem, I'd probably try to write a few more stanzas to give some of the back story; why are they operating on his knee? How come that particular group of people are there? I'm seeing a US Civil War setting ... the ether as anaesthetic is a clue ... but I could be wrong.

    1. There actually is a bit more, but our blog is of 100-word pieces so I left out the refrain.

  21. Wonderful story and it is really well written. Taught me something too - didn't know of ether addiction - but now I do!
    Anna :o]

  22. Oh this sounds so painful... but it's really well written... (I did not try singing)

  23. Wow, what a story! And a perfect ballad to boot. :)


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