Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Outbreak (04/07/11)
TITLE: Giddysborough School's Great Laughter Outbreak
By Helen Curtis
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It’s a tale of wonder amongst great despair.
It happened not really that long ago,
In the quaint little town of Giddysborough.
The townsfolk, now they were a prudish lot,
For humourous things they cared not a jot!
Until one incredible day, late in January,
When one class became, truly legendary.
The children of the Giddysborough School stood in line,
Quietly, orderly, perfectly aligned.
No word was spake, there was no giggle heard,
For harsh and swift punishment would be incurred.
The solemnly teachers bid their classes “come,”
So off they all trotted inside, one-by-one.
“Left, right, shoulders back, heads held high, don’t be slack.”
Oh dear, such decorum indeed, do you lack.”
With a congregational sigh they sat down,
Desks scraping the floor, making Ms. Connor frown.
There was no, “Hello class, how are you today?”
Just, “Take out your textbooks, quickly now, don’t delay.”
For the next eighty minutes their brains were beset,
From Pythagoras’ Theorem to numeric sets.
And just when they thought their poor heads would explode,
A sound, was it laughter? barely audible, rose.
Every eye turned to the back of the room,
To see little Penny looking out of the gloom.
The smile on her face was so innocent, so free,
What was it that filled her with such candid glee?
One by one each child followed her gaze,
Through the drab window, out into the haze.
They still couldn’t see it, what was her joy’s source,
Then suddenly two kittens jumped out from the gorse!
Those two little furballs they leapt and they bounced,
Then, spying a butterfly, clumsily pounced.
They sniffed at the flowers, they tripped over grass,
Oh those fuzzy grey felines did cause such a fuss!
The students could not hide their smiles as they gazed,
Oblivious to cranky Ms. Connor’s ire they’d raised.
And right there and then, for the first time in years,
The echo of laughter tickled their ears.
The first one to crack, with a snort, was Elaine,
Which in turn set off Tommy, then Sarah and Dwayne.
Then Harry, and Peter and the Twins, Pat and Matt,
Even Roger, the “teachers’ pet” couldn’t hold back!
“Now just stop that ruckus!” Ms. Connor called with a shout,
Oh what would be thought of her when this news broke out?
“What’s wrong with you children, have you all lost your minds?
You won’t be laughing when the Principal spanks your behinds!”
For some reason the children just couldn’t explain,
The thought of this made them laugh harder again!
It was a great moment, a liberation of the souls,
Of the children of Giddysborough school, from its sheols.
And so that grand day saw a paradigm shift,
The oppression banished; the gloominess lift.
And should any teacher try, their elation, to take,
The class simply recalls “The Great Laughter Outbreak.”
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