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Telling Secrets

faith, fatherhood, and culture

Bad Poetry and Short Short Story Contest--For My Birthday!

Thursday, August 02, 2007


















I really can't take credit for this idea--a talented agent I work with, Chip McGregor, has the twisted mind that came up with a Bad Poetry contest to celebrate his birthday. What a fabulous idea, but since I write more short stories than poetry, I thought I'd expand the concept a little.

So, to enter the contest, leave your short short story or bad poem as a comment to this blog post. Everyone who comes to my birthday party on August 26 will have a chance to judge the entries. I will be the final judge since I'm the birthday boy.

The Grand Prize is a rare and most valuable copy of The Message called "Jesus Loves Porn Stars." All entries must be in by August 26 at 1:37 p.m.
Good luck!


  1. Blogger Petronia said:

    Way down there
    in the depths of despair
    Caleb had a wart
    that made his toe short.

    You can attest to the fact that this is a real poem that I really made up years ago :) I have a pretty terrible short story I could enter...maybe I will if I can find it.

  1. Blogger caleb j seeling said:

    That is a blast from the past! I'm not sure which was worse--the poem or the wart.

  1. Anonymous chip macgregor said:

    Deepfulness
    ___________

    The ladybugs went marching gaily off to tea,
    And the world exploded in metaphysic harmony,
    As Mother Time launches into an oratory,
    Backed by a gruesome quartet.

    With Beowulf railing the color is changing as Trillum downs a martinet,
    The fires burn coldly and march away boldly to the strains of an old minuet.

    With a hey nonny-nonny and a hot cha-cha,
    And the sound of distant drums...

    chip

  1. Anonymous chip said:

    okay...I have to admit that I stole most of that last line from famed British novelist P.G. Wodehouse, who was himself a lover of bad poetry. He ended with a "hey nonny-nonny and the sound of distant moors..." But I've just come back from Scotland and seen the moors, and there's not much "sound" to them. So my guess is old Plum was putting us on. And there you have it. Brilliance at every line. Let me know if this changes your life. Brother Caleb, if you'll start strumming the guitar for the Special Music, I'll take up an offering.

  1. Blogger Petronia said:

    Dang, I just found a doosy that I wrote, apparently, after learning some new vocab. It starts with:
    "This creature of the feminine persuasion / doth draw venerable men in" and ends with "O creature of the feminine persuasion, / turn from your torturous and evil ways / and fall into the saving arms of Jesus, / for He cares for you." Amazing.

  1. Blogger Margaret Feinberg said:

    Roses are red
    Violets are blue
    I once lost a button
    and decided to use glue.

  1. Blogger caleb j seeling said:

    Pete, it sounds like you need to post the full version of your feminine poem!

  1. Blogger Petronia said:

    Okay, Bob, since it's your birthday. This is so embarrassing.

    Creature of the Feminine Persuasion

    This creature of the feminine persuasion
    doth draw venerable men in.
    Her curvaceous figure allures men to her
    and her words captivate their hearts.
    Soft, dark curls flow gently over firm shoulders.
    One stray lock fall dangerously near
    the azure depths of eyes
    so well accentuated by arched, contemplative brows.
    Sitting decoriously, yet not obtrusively,
    a perfect nose quietly connects the windows to her soul
    with crafty and sumptuous lips.
    Beautiful words gracefully flow from her mouth.
    Enthralled, men watch as her sanguine face
    confirms the trollop's sweet, fallible words.
    With the perfect body of Eve,
    each step, each movement is so svelt
    that a man is bewitched
    and held by her spell.
    The man fails to see that her words and behavior
    mask the painful secrets of her heart,
    which she tries to quell with her surreptitious desire
    to enamor men's hearts toward herself.
    Her effulgent eyes are the only points through which
    one can penetrate her risque facade
    and search the depths of her anguishing soul.
    Most perceive her as a parading strumpet
    whose eyes reveal no more than
    the heart her eyes are set upon.
    Yet this temptress is more than a pathetic lady of the night.
    Men's hearts, not money, are on her mind.
    Dangerous is she--
    to any man of languid virility.
    This libidinous coquette doth attenuate
    a man's supposed impregnable character.
    She is a lion, terrible and hungry,
    feasting licentiously on his infatuated heart.
    What is her hurt?
    What decadent past follows her
    and impells her to instill pain
    in those whose hearts she gains?
    O creature of the feminine persuasion,
    turn from your torturous and evil ways
    and fall into the saving arms of Jesus,
    for he cares for you, thou tempting snake.

  1. Blogger caleb j seeling said:

    I'm not sure whether I should strum a dirge on a guitar for Chip or saw on some strings to accentuate the "tempting snake." In any case, I figure I need to throw in, though I won't award myself the prize.

  1. Blogger caleb j seeling said:

    THE COSMIC IMPLICATIONS OF TOMATOES--AN ELIZABETHAN SONNET

    STRUMPET TOMATO

    Never was there a fruit that tempts the eyes
    So well with rouge and flesh to salve the soul.
    Liquid delight pours from a quick incise
    The strong, swift flow beckons toward Sheol.
    I'm charmed, and taste the fruit with hopes of bliss
    To live again in times long past, when grass
    Stayed green and soft, and days were long; a kiss
    Alone from wifely lips could have surpassed.
    But I have been deceived! Visions so sweet
    Have been unmade by gall so vile my gut
    Upheaves. I'm lost--my faith misplaced in meat
    That, like a harlot, tempts with rose-hued smut.
    Again my fear has swayed my thoughts and deeds
    And filled my oft-tilled garden with tough weeds.

  1. Blogger Petronia said:

    Great party by the way :) Thanks for having it.

  1. Blogger Amanda Greenslade said:

    Antonymously Inspired Intro
    by Amanda Greenslade

    The servant twice considered leaving the valley where the woman died; Servant Semaglig procrastinated and thought twice about leaving. He wrote to his master Udikne:

    “Udikne, since a woman can pass beyond the first beginning of death, I want to leave the valley, to undo my obscurity there. Where obscurity can be undone there, I will undo my obscurity; and where no obscurity can be undone there, I shall undo the obscurity of the demons.”

    His master Udikne answered him: “My servant, if tomorrow you are going to leave the valley, Utu should know nothing about it. If you are going to leave the Valley of Tree-growth, Utu should not know. Utu, ancient Utu, should not know about it from us. A question that concerns the valley is not of Utu’s concern. A question about the Valley of Tree-growth is beneath the attention of ancient Utu. Utu should not know about it from us.”

    Semaglig prepared a black wolf. He clasped it, a sacrificial object, close to his back. On his foot he had a demonic shoe, as he addressed Utu of the underworld:

    “Utu, I am going to leave the valley! May you be my antagonist! I am going to leave the Valley of Tree-growth! May you be my enemy!”

    From the underworld Utu replied to him: “Old woman, you are ignoble already in everyone else’s opinion—but what do you despise about the valley?”

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