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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Comedy of Errors (not about the play) (08/18/11)

TITLE: Are You Sitting Comfortably....?
By Margaret Kearley


I heard a tale some years ago
That strongly reinforced
That written word or spoken word
Can quickly go off-course.
The tale taught me a lesson
I’ve remembered to this day:
To write or say just what I mean
And mean just what I say.
Without due heed, my chosen words
Can tumble out at speed,
And if they are misunderstood
What havoc may proceed.
So if it is ‘convenient’,
Though it may raise a smile,
I’ll share with you the tale I heard,
Bear with me for a while .....

Eidelweiss hills, white mountain peaks
Rose from the valley floor
And captivatingly called to one
To leave England’s fair shore.
The lady’s plans were quickly made
With alacrity she went
To visit various properties
Looking for rooms to rent.
The local village schoolmaster
In kindness lent a hand,
And plans were soon completed –
A new home in Switzerland.
The lady, back in England,
Made final preparation
And dwelt upon her future home
In joyful contemplation:
A kitchenette, a bedroom,
A lounge, a balcony,
A shower room – wait a moment –
Where was the WC?
Perplexed at this omission,
She took up her pen in haste
And asked the schoolmaster if there was
A WC in the place.
Now, when he read the letter,
For his English grasp was scant,
He had to call the Parish Priest
And ask him what this meant.
They pondered long together
‘Whatever could this be,
This strange abbreviation
Briefly stated ‘ WC’?
After a long discussion
A dawning light was lit!
A ‘WC’ must stand for
Wayside Chapel – that was it!
His past dilemma over,
He quickly sent a note
To put the lady’s mind at rest,
And this is what he wrote........

‘Dear Madam it’s my pleasure
To inform you graciously
That just 9 miles from your house
There is a WC.
The aspect’s very pleasant,
The views are just divine,
Placed in a beautiful surround,
Within a grove of pine.
It’s open every Thursday,
As well as Sundays too,
And particularly in the summer months
Many will come to view.
You have to get there early
If you would find a seat
Or else content you have to be
With standing on your feet.
However it is spacious
And I believe I’ve heard some state
That one time there were visitors
Numbering two hundred and eight.
A wealthy local resident
Oversees the upkeep well
And recently donated
A gleaming golden bell.
Whenever someone enters
It rings with timbre chime
And its dulcet tones reverberate
Loudly time after time.
It may be of some interest
To you additionally
That my own daughter was married
Last year in the WC.
It was a little crowded,
And some had to share a seat
But everyone enjoyed the day
Though one fainted in the heat.

Dear Madam, may this answer
Your query adequately.
We'll welcome you to Switzerland
And to the WC.’

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This article has been read 605 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Benjamin Graber08/25/11
LOL! Excellent job writing a very funny tale in rhyme!
Virgil Youngblood 08/25/11
Lillian Rhoades 08/25/11
Since I drew a blank with this week's topic, I wondered how others would treat it. You did a great job! Can I guess that WC means Washing Chamber? If I'm wrong, perhaps that might be one minor "flaw," and my "dilemna is not over.":-) Then, too, perhaps you took care of that in the title. You used great rhyming words: reinforced - and off-course and the rhythmn flowed effortlessly. Well done!
marcella franseen08/26/11
Thank you for the laugh! Great job!
Danielle King 08/27/11
This is the funniest poem I've ever read! I think it's known as 'lavatorial' humour! In future I shall refer to the WC as the 'loo' to avoid misunderstanding!
Laury Hubrich 08/27/11
Juliette Chamberlain-Bond08/28/11
I hope that lady had good kidney control!

I like how you highlight the confusion that can come from a simple misunderstanding, and even more so when dialogue is in two different langauages.

That you have conveyed the story in excellent rhyme is amazing.

Noel Mitaxa 08/29/11
I won't say too much for fear of being labelled a bladdermouth, but this was very clever.
Linda Goergen08/31/11
A comical error for sure! Such a fun read, told so well, with lighthearted rhyme! Enjoyed!
Carol Penhorwood 09/17/11
This was hilarious. I forgot to look and see if this placed in the rankings, but, as far as I'm concerned, it was a true winner. Your rhyme and meter are right on, making reading it a delight. You have a true gift with a poet's pen.