Thisby Thestoop and the Black Mountain

It’s fair to say that I read a good number of books children’s books. Having kids of my own, I like to pilfer their shelves from time to time. In our house, we like to stock “the classics” as a sort of quality guarantee. Since children’s books became a genre there have been writers who have tried to cash in on the children’s market as a way to make a quick buck with little effort. Reading “the classics” means that you get the best books from every era without having to wade through the formulaic twaddle, most of which has mercifully been forgotten over the years.
It’s a different story with modern children’s books. Picking up a new children’s book means taking a chance on wasting your time, and the modern children’s book publishing machine loves tried and true formulas. After the success of Harry Potter we got books about schools for magical/mythological/specially talented kids who are sorted into groups based on their personalities. After The Hunger Games took off, we’ve have had m…

Advent Poem 12

All You That in This House Be Here
Traditional English

All you that in this house be here,
Remember Christ that for us died,
And spend away with modest cheer
In loving sort this Christmas tide.

And, whereas plenty God hath sent,
Give frankly to your friends in love:
The bounteous mind is freely bend,
And never will a niggard prove.

Our table spread within the hall,
I know a banquet is at hand,
And friendly sort to welcome all
That will unto their tacklings stand.

The maids are bonny girls, I see,
Who have provided much good cheer,
Which, at my dame's commandment, be
Now set upon the table here.

For I have here two knives in store,
To lend to him that wanteth one;
Commend my wits, good lads, therefore,
That come now hither having none.

For, if I should, no Christmas pie
Would fall, I doubt, unto my share;
Wherefore, I will my manhood try,
To fight a battle if I dare.

For pasty-crust, like castle walls,
Stands braving me unto my face;
I am not well until it falls,
And I made captain of the place.

The prunes, so lovely, look on me,
I cannot choose but venture on:
The pie-meat spiced brave I see,
The which I must not let alone.

Then, butler, fill me forth some beer,
My song hath made me somewhat dry;
And so again to this good cheer,
I'll quickly fall courageously.

And for my master I will pray,
With all that of his household are,
Both old and young, that long we may
Of God's good blessings have a share.


Erica said…
I just love the fact they're comparing eating a pie to breaking down castle walls.
That's the best metaphor ever.
Xindaeltal said…
Right... where is the rest of the poetry!?!?!?!?!??!?!
Rick said…
Yeah. About that. It didn't quite work for me this year. I got busy and didn't take the time to keep up. Oh well. Maybe next year.
Xindaeltal said…
Its called cut and paste and takes 2 seconds. ;-) I'm kidding enjoy the new year brother.