A Google ads. & Bums on Table Rant – Day 19

A Google ads. & Bums on Table Rant

using some Shakespearean insults “plus”

My pale head having small thought for insults.

But I who wretchedly day by day in April

act upon prompts; am prompted to rant.

I must tell you friendly in your ear,

sell when you can, you are not for all markets.

Even as I search, Google advertisements assault

at every turn.

I scorn you, scurvy companion.

And on through my search Google ads., I tell you:

There’s no more faith in thee than a stewed prune.

Now that was a strange insult because I’ve never

lost faith in a stewed prune to move things along:

if you get my drift.

Google ads: you are like unto bums on a table;

and that, in my country, is an insult. More so

than Shakespearean insults a step further by

uttering the supreme insult thus. Pokokohau ma.

A literal “cooked heads.”

But that last curse I will leave for politicians.

I heard one pronounce this insult such

a short time ago. Both Maori, they know

the full extent of their insult exchange.

I’m not sure the matter was settled. An

hundred and forty years ago they’d have

bought on the war parties.

Benita H. Kape (c) 204.2021


Insults to Maori (New Zealanders) =Bums on tables and pokokohau ma

“And last but not least, our prompt (optional, as always). Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a humorous rant. In this poem, you may excoriate to your heart’s content all the things that get on your nerves. Perhaps it’s people who tailgate when driving, or don’t put the caps back on pens after they use them. Or the raccoons who get into your garbage cans. For inspiration, perhaps you might look to this list of  Shakespearean insults. Or, for all of you who grew up on cartoons from the 1980s, perhaps this compendium of Skeletor’s Best Insults might provide some insight.”


Grotesque and Greedy at Day Fifteen NaPoWriMo, 15.4.2018


The Goblin, the Grocer and the Student


Let us begin with the grocer’s wife; talkative

and very long of tongue. A student

who makes a marvellous find

when it is a page of a poetry book,

and not newspaper, wrapping his purchase

of candles and cheese. (About which Health

and Safety I would suggest, agitate some dis-ease.)


Here comes the student who says the grocer

is a practical man but that he knows no more about

poetry than the nearby tub. Porridge and pats

of butter bring in the grotesque goblin, who lives in

the smallest corner of the household and whose

blood pressure is raised  and who then acts

mischievously on behalf of the tub, though

both student and grocer saw the remark as a joke.

You can lose a tongue when a point must be made

and so the goblin; borrows, we are told, the wife’s

long tongue for the tub. The tongue is passed around

from the coffee mill to the cash box and back to the

tub whose opinion is that poetry comes at the bottom

of the page in newspapers. And because of the student’s

perceived insult the goblin is about to lay into him but

is made a convert when he monitors the student

and his poetry, so that he comes to love it well. When

a fire breaks out everyone rushes to save their most

precious treasure but  the goblin heads up to the garret,

where naturally, the student lives, and in order to save

the book of poems he does very well by wrapping

the precious book in his red hat.


RED ALERT because a red hat on a goblin spells danger

and blood so that the tongue is not returned to the wife.

A tongue that says poetry is neither, news, truth or even

legendary therefore such a tongue should end up

in the river in more pieces than two, the goblin now says.

(That verdict has yet to be proved – Health and Safety never

punctilious in Fairy Tales.) But we are not about to end

this poetic fable with the unpoetic grocer’s wife. We go

back to the goblin who decides he must now serve

two masters; the grocer and the student. He remains

grotesque and mischievous and outright greedy

when it comes to poetry and still enjoys his porridge

and pats of butter at Christmas time.


Benita Kape © 15.4.2018

NaPoWriMo 2018 image

 And now for our prompt (optional, as always). In her interview, Blake suggests writing a poem in which a villain faces an unfortunate situation, and is revealed to be human (but still evil). Perhaps this could mean the witch from Hansel & Gretel has lost her beloved cat, and is going about the neighbourhood sticking up heart-wrenching “Lost Cat” signs, but still finds human children delicious. Maybe Blackbeard the Pirate is lost at sea in an open boat, remembering how much he loved his grandmother (although he will still kill the first person dumb enough to scoop him from the waves).