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Fater Time with sythe weathervane Lors cricket ground LondonPhilip Kitcher: Not Cricket 

“English cricket is ‘racist, sexist and elitist’
says landmark report."     – The Guardian
    You are right that we should not despise
players from lands we strove to civilize.
Provided bowlers have a fierce attack,
who worries if their skin is pink or black?
Further: the ladies ought to be allowed
to play their version for a smaller crowd.
The gentler sex cannot withstand the shocks
when a pace bowler clocks you in the box.
But sir, we are predestined to cross swords
if you admit the hoi polloi to Lord’s!
Do not insist on staging tests for lasses,
or games for pupils from the lower classes –
it is not cricket, sir, to break the rules
so long established in our finest schools.
You trample sacred ground, and you profane
a sanctum where tradition ought to reign,
the shrine where Father Time still wields his scythe.
          Colonel Percy Addlepately-Smythe.

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Gail White: Storm Drain Story

A Florida woman was rescued from a storm drain
for the third time in less than 2 years. –   NY Post

Let me tell you, guys, I love this drain.
Spent three weeks here in 2021
at Delray Beach. Who needs to see the sun?
It’s peaceful here, no gunshots. I’m as sane
as you are any day. Tried it again
once, in Grand Prairie, Texas. Now I’m back
in Florida, where folks will leave a snack
out for me near a manhole. Now and then
I find unopened drinks. Keep hauling me
out and you’ll just make sewer life the rage
as people learn how cool it is. Engage
with Mother Nature while you live rent-free! 
Look, I’m so healthy I don’t even cough.
I choose to live in drains. Just bugger off

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Jean L. Kreiling: Ovillejo On Deconstructing Schoenberg

“I laid the foundation for a new procedure in 
in musical construction . . . the constant and
exclusive use of a set of  12 different tones.”
                                      –Arnold Schoenberg

His music always has good bones:
twelve tones
well-ordered and then recombined,
in row upon well-measured row –
just so
Schoenberg can shout a tuneless NO
to old construction rules. And his
make sense. But is that all there is?
Twelve tones aligned just so?                                                       

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Felicia Nimue Ackerman: The Importance of Not Being Unduly Earnest 

“Poetry teaches us how to live in a world in which none of us belongs.”
 –Dennis  Nurkse – 

Some poems have this lofty aim,
But why suppose they're all the same?
It seems to me it would be rash
To apply this earnest thinking to the
many simply delightful poems of Ogden Nash.

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L. A. Mereoie: Brain Strain

"A 999 call . . . came from a man complaining that
a pigeon was eating peas growing in his garden."
                                                       - Evening News

A pigeon was gorging – good God! –
On my prize-winning peas in the pod
    So I dialled 999
    But they cried “Hold the line!
While we call out the mental health squad!”  

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Brian Allgar: A Plague of Peacocks

(For years, around 30 peacocks have terrorised  people
 in Maryport, Cumbria. Residents say the birds have 
 scratched vehicles, knocked off wing mirrors, caused
 damage to kitchens and pecked on front doors. But
 three peacocks have recently died, two from being
 hit by cars, and another from poisoning.)

Peacocks in Maryport
Terrorised residents
All over town.

People were driven to
Poisoning peacocks or
Running them down.

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Felicia Nimue Ackerman: How Sweet It Is

“Well, folks, it’s miserable out there. The heat, the humidity,
the bugs, the wildfire smoke, the impending threat of El Niño.
But at least we have ice cream.” Nikita Richardson – NY Times

“Skip the ice cream, eat some fruit,” the health crusaders tell us.
Hoping to persuade us, they may wish they could compel us.
“Curb your self-indulgence,” they advise, “it leads to grief.”
Reading a dissenter is a wonderful relief!

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Chris O’Carroll: Raw Bar

“The ‘models’ are not naked for sanitation reasons. 
They wear nude bikinis and the food is placed on 
banana leaves, not their skin directly. Their body is 
like a table top. It’s artistic and beautiful when 
executed properly.”.

A defender of Kanye West quoted in The
Independent about a birthday party at which 
the musician ‘served sushi on nude women.’ 

Get extra frisson from your food
By noshing off a supine nude.
That seems to be how Kanye West,
Or Ye, likes uncooked seafood best,
Presented on a woman’s breast.

Call it Japanese tradition?
Artistry-enhanced nutrition?
Cultural appropriation?
Male-supremacist collation?

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Jerome Betts: Day Of The Psittacids

“Paignton Zoo officials are baffled by
the disappearance of all their 35 free-
flying parakeets  . . .” 
                   – Western Morning News 

Some change is hard to understand –
My mind’s disturbed, unbalanced, teetery.
Has England’s green and pleasant land,
Become a perfect parakeetery?

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Stephen Gold: Scone of Destiny 

A woman from London has completed a decade-long 
mission to sample a scone at every National Trust
location with a tearoom or restaurant. Sarah Merker,
49, from Isleworth, west London, tasted scones at 
244 National Trust sites across England, Wales and 
Northern Ireland. Merker ranked and reviewed each 
scone on her blog,
- The Guardian

All hail to thee fair Sarah,
As we salute your quest
To be the standard-bearer
For baking at its best.

The stately homes of Britain
(Or rather, their cafes)
Have left you truly smitten,
And lavish in your praise.

But now your journey’s over,
And honour’s richly earned.
From John O’ Groats to Dover,
You’ve left no scone unturned. 

Buttermilk scones on a wire ame