Apostrophic Lapses

Good morning everyone!
I have been reading in Lynne Truss’s book, Eats, Shoots
and Leaves and came across her lament about misused and AWOL apostrophes.
Ms Truss tells of how she wrote an article for The Daily Telegraph about incorrect or missing punctuation and got an avalanche of letters from readers sharing and ticked off over violations they’d seen.

A lack of apostrophic know-how & know-where leads to signs like:

Lemon’s – 2 for $1
(or even) Lemon,s – 2 for $1
Trouser’s shortened
Summer cottages’ for rent
Member’s Only
Mikes’ Garage
The Smiths’s Silver Anniversary
Cyclist’s only on this path
The guest speakers talk will be about…
XMA’S trees
Jamison Antique,s

Her account, coupled with various writing prompts yesterday and today, has led me to write this verse:

THE OVER-WORKED EDITOR

Apostrophe confusion
gives Editor such grief:
he finds them wandering randomly
or employed beyond belief.

For Thompson’s prone to muff it
typesetting the word beaux’s
and covering the Jone’s affair
his know-where hits new lows.

An ad reads “Naval orange’s”
and Molly’s ship is sinking,
while it’s and its and their and they’re
confuse that fellow Pinking.

Restrained the Editor may be
but don’t you know he’ll rage
should “Sports Marts’ Sale on Bycycle’s”
appear on his printed page.

He caught “the citys’ bylaw”
before it got to press,
but a write-up about the Queens’ speech
led to a royal mess.

So he begs them to get serious:
“Study punctuation rules!
We need to shake this errancy
so we don’t look like fools.”

“But I was sure I had it right,”
dumbfounded Molly wails.
Editor sighs and insists again
on accurate details.

“Our readers are nit-picking,”
young Thompson quickly states.
Editor growls. “Get it right or else
your job here terminates.”

“From now on I’ll be checking
on every bit of copy;
your pages will be cremated
if you hand in anything sloppy.”

“No apostrophic laxity
permissible henceforth
or there will be pecuniary
punishment in store.”

Ragtag Daily Prompt: SERIOUS
Fandango’s FOWC: STUDY and DUMBFOUNDED
Word of the Day: CREMATE
M-W’s Word of the Day: PECUNIARY

Lacy Look Lost

When I got up this morning and saw a beautifully etched lace on my kitchen window, I thought I should write some little verse about it. For some odd reason I thought of the sun melting the frost bit by bit and “eating an elephant one bite at a time.”

Sammi’s writing prompt gives me the perfect opportunity for my imagination. This is to be “a fun writing exercise” using the word and word count given in the box below.

ARTWORK UNRAVELED

A frost artist, disposed,
last night while I dozed
to add a nice touch to my place,
not content with the plainness —
my window seemed pane-less —
he’s etched me a curtain of lace!
His work so enchanting
and so fine, I am granting,
adds tasteful improvement today.
But alas, here comes morn
and the warm sun has shorn
a bit of the top work away.
With passionless plodding
it persists in defrauding
me of my curtain —so crass!
As some fool eats an elephant,
each bite sends inelegant
streams of drool down the glass.
And so, in an hour,
I’ve watched it devour
my fancy frost curtain, alas!

Jack’s Abstemious Diet

The Word of the Day challenge this morning was JACK.
I thought of various Jacks, some authors like Jack London and Clive Staples Lewis, whose nickname was Jack. There are various Jacks mentioned in poems, like Jack who went up the hill with Jill, and Jack who ate his Christmas pie. Finally I opted to do something with the Jack who could eat no fat — poor fellow!
The Ragtag Daily prompt this morning was HEWN, so I’ll include that in my response, too. They say you should have fun with the writing prompts, so here’s my fun rhyme.

FOR THE GOOD OF HIS HEALTH

Bucking all of the sumptuous trends,
Jack’s diet’s been hewn to abstemious ends,
poor Jack gets all the leanest grub
while his dear little wife…ah there’s the rub!

Jack salts his spuds and peppers his beef
not a lick of gravy to give them relief;
forbidden the butter, denied sour cream.
He’s wasting away on this fat-less regime!

His wife does her part to empty the plates
of anything fatty Jack might want to taste;
she, ever-vigilant, metes out his diet
no oil on the salad — though Jack once did try it.

He watches his missus pour on the cheese sauce;
to moisten his veggies, Jack gets barley broth.
She slathers on gravy, eats ham with the fat,
poor Jack’s turning pale as he takes in all that.

Mrs Spratt finished the whole Christmas cake;
for hubby’s dessert a scone she did bake.
He gnawed on the morsel all afternoon
thinking it must be of ebony hewn.

He rues that sad day when his doc, meaning good,
said Jack mustn’t have so much fat in his food,
for Mrs Spratt took the instructions entire
and now from starvation he may well expire.

The Reckoning

The Ragtag Daily Prompt word for today is RECKONING
And here is my response:

Frustrated.RobinHiggins
Robin Higgins – Pixabay

Me And My Big Mouth!

She started out to say, “You know, yesterday I met a cousin of Katie Powers.” She trailed off, evidently gathering her thoughts.

I was so certain that I knew exactly where she was heading that I blasted back with a witty retort. Well…sort of witty. Sort of catty.

Her eyes focused on my face again and my conscience smacked me when I saw the startled look in her eye. I’d hurt her deeply; I was sure of it.

Filled with remorse, I started to babble. “I’m so sorry! I never should have said that! When you said you’d heard…well, I was just sure you were going to bring up what Katie and I had talked about. But of course you don’t know anything about that. And even if you do, you’d be too good a friend to bring it up in public like this where anybody might hear.” I waved my hand toward some other patrons in the crowded coffee shop.

My throat was so tight now I could hardly go on. “You’ve always been a good friend and I shouldn’t jump to such conclusions. And even if you were going to start in about what you heard, I shouldn’t make such a sarcastic comment. Can you ever forgive me?”

I paused. How would she react? Would my harsh response throw a wedge in our friendship?

She looked at me and opened her mouth, then paused to compose her reply. This is it, I thought. The moment of reckoning.

“What did you say, Terri? The two at that table over there started discussing someone I know. My mind was distracted and I didn’t hear you. I’m sorry. What’s this about Katie? Were you talking to her lately?”

Move over, Humpty Dumpty.

Eggs-pressions.lynnalynn0
Image: lynnalynn0 at Pixabay