Santa Claus is Coming to Nicaea

Remember how the subtitle for this blog is ‘Politics and Poetry’?  And it’s basically all politics?  Well, this is not really *good* poetry, but what is a girl to do when someone complains about the lack of Christmas Carols celebrating Saint Nicholas (that’s Santa Claus to you) punching Arius (the heretic) at the Council of Nicaea?

I admit, the scansion is less than perfect.  It’s difficult to fit any really sound theology into lines of 5 or 7 syllables.  (And unsound theology has similar numbers of syllables to good theology, as it turns out.)  Also, technically, the bit about the Creed is ahistorical, because that happened *because* of Arius, not before him.  But I suspect that anyone who cares enough to nitpick… is exactly the right audience for this.

(I promise I’ll get back to the Victorian State Election results soon.)

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Song: 50 Ways to Find a Dead Mouse (with apologies – profuse ones – to Paul Simon

Because not all the mice our cats kill get eaten.  Some of them get put aside for later…

(This song goes to the tune of 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.  Also, it’s fairly disgusting, as you might have guessed from its title.  That’s what happens when you have cats…)
The mouse is underneath the bed, she said to me
Or maybe in the bath, or under the TV…
Surprising presents are the nicest, don’t you see?
There must be fifty ways to find a dead mouse.

She said, It’s hard to say just where a dead mouse could belong
Furthermore, I hope my mousie won’t be lost for long
Or else you may find its aroma is quite strong…
There must be fifty ways to find a dead mouse.
Fifty ways to find a dead mouse…

What’s that stench by the bench, Dench?
Does that pail have a tail, Dale?
Did that dish just go squish, Trish?
I don’t want to see…
Did it fall in the hall, Paul?
I’ve found half in the bath, Garth
And there’s gore in the drawer, Shaw
But where could the rest be?

Could that part be the heart, Mart?
Will the brain leave a stain, Jane?
Is that hair on the chair, Claire?
Or is it something more?
Here’s a rat on the mat, Pat
Disembowelled on a towel, Raoul,
Entrails read on the bed, Ned
The future is sure…

She said it grieves me so to see you in such pain
But here’s a nice dead mouse to make you smile again
I said I appreciate that and would you please explain
Just where you left that mouse…

She said it’s much more fun to find it in the night.
When you get up to go to the bathroom without the light
And then she purred at me and I realized she probably was right
There must be fifty ways to find a dead mouse.
Fifty ways to find a dead mouse. Or rat…

Fling the thing in the air, Cher
Make it fly up on high, Guy
Let the bowl be your goal, Noel,
And the coffee mug, too…
Get it wedged near the fridge, Midge
Hide it snug ‘neath the rug, Doug
On the floor by the door, Lenore
As a present for you!

Find the treat with your feet, Pete
Smell its scent through the vent, Brent
When you tread on its head, Ed
Won’t you be proud of me?
Feel the ooze ‘tween your toes, Rose
Hear the crack of its back, Jack
See it spread as you tread, Fred
Now, find the other three…

(I know, I know. Some of the rhymes don’t [which is completely self-inflicted, because for some reason I felt compelled to do a triple rhyme when a double was all the original called for], and I really had to push my luck with some of the names – if you have any better suggestions, please let me know. But, oddly enough, the scansion should be pretty close to the original, which is a little weird in places anyway)

The Cats With Thumbs Song (with apologies to ABBA)

This one goes to the tune of Money, Money, Money, and was essentially dictated to me by the cats.

 

I miaow all night, I miaow all day, to get outside, to get to play –
Ain’t it sad?
And still there never seems to be a can openable by me –
That’s too bad!
But in my dreams I have it planned:
If I evolve a human hand
I wouldn’t have to miaow at all, I’d rule the world and have a ball…

Thumby thumby thumby
Must be funny
To have human hands
Thumby thumby thumby
Always sunny
If I just had hands
Mia-iaow!
All the things I could do
If I had opposing digits –
It’s a human’s world!

Now evolution’s hard to do, but it is surely overdue
You agree?
And any cat would work and sweat to be an owner not a pet
Just like me.
But if that fails, one plan remains:
To get control of human brains –
I’ll hypnotise you handily, your human hands will work for me…

Mummy mummy mummy
Scratch my tummy
With your human hands
Mummy mummy mummy
Get food for me
With your useful hands
Mia-iaow!
All the things you could do
Just to make your kitty happy
It’s a feline’s world

Evol-evolution!
Is my solution
To have human hands…
Evol-evolution!
A revolution!
If we just had hands
Mia-iaow!
All the things I could do
If I had opposing digits –
It would be my world!

It would be my world!

You’re Gonna Lose That Mouse (with apologies to the Beatles)

Do you even want to know what inspired this?  Let’s just say that every cat owner probably knows this one… It goes to the tune of ‘You’re Gonna Lose That Girl’, by The Beatles.

 

You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)

If you don’t take it out right now, it’s going to get away
(Under the couch to stay)
And if your sister hunts it out, then it will be her prey
(She’s going to get to play)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)

If you don’t pounce tonight, young cat
you’re going to find it gone
(That mouse can really run)
And if that mousey gets away
You’ll be the yowly one
(Which will be much less fun)
You’re going to lose that mouse…
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes yes You’re going to lose that mouse)

Oh yes, you’re clever, a mighty huntress – that we know
(Not in here – NO!) yeah
But darling kitty, please don’t let it go…
You’re going to lose that mouse
You’re going to lose that mouse
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Quick – there it goes across the floor!)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Just get her out and shut the door!)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Yes, you ARE red in tooth and claw)

Yes, you are mighty, the very smartest cat we know
(What a good throw!) yeah
But please, just pounce now – do not let it go…

If you must chase that mouse indoors,
you’d better kill it dead
(Or your sister will instead)
And you can feast on mouse organs,
And you’ll be quite well-fed
(But please don’t hide the head)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(No, please don’t chase it round the house)
You’re going to lose that mouse
(Please say you haven’t lost that mouse)
You’re going to lose that mouse!
(You’ve gone and lost that mouse)

Song: Santa Claus is Watching You (with apologies to Sting, but none whatsoever to J. Fred Coots)

Did anyone else ever think that ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ was kind of creepy?

To be sung to the tune of ‘Every Breath You Take’, by Sting

Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every toy you break
Every pet you shake

I’ll be watching you

‘Til it’s Christmas day
Every word you say
Every game you play –
From my deer-drawn sleigh

I’ll be watching you

O I can see
From the Christmas Tree
Whether you’ve been good
If you’ve done what you should

I am taking notes
I am writing quotes
I am counting votes
Sorting sheep from goats

I am watching you

Made a list and I’m checking it all twice
When you’re awake, I will know it in a trice
When you’re asleep I know when you close your eyes
That’s how I find out who’s been naughty or nice
Santa Claus is coming back to town…

Oh, don’t you pout
Don’t you scream or shout
Oh you’d best watch out
For you need have no doubt:

Every time you fight
Be it day or night
While the snow is white
From the chimney’s height

I’ll be watching you.

Every move you make
E very toy you break
Every small mistake
Asleep or awake

I’ll be watching you.

Sitting in my sleigh
Until Christmas day

I’ll be watching you

Santa’s watching you
Santa’s watching you
Santa’s watching you
Santa’s watching you….

Spoken: So be good for goodness sake…

The Flying Duckman (with apologies to A. P. Ryder)

Inspired by this article about a flotilla of plastic bath ducks roaming free through the Arctic Ocean

Who hath seen the Phantom Ducks,
Riding the waves in rubber flocks,
Careering o’er the lonesome main
No bath shall know their squeak again.
But how about the scholar’s plight
Who forever tracks these ducks in flight
Currents to map, for ends unknown
And reason hath it ever flown
Or to vigil strange and long
Does a sort of joy belong…
And one absurdity into another flows
As onward the strange armada goes.
But no, Hark! Quack! Quack Rubber duckies cry,
Quack; Quack, on that sea they fly;
Ah, watching here in awed delight,
Ducks, frogs and beavers ever bright
Journey on across the watery deep
To land in Canada and sleep…

Song: The Universal Filker (with apologies to Donovan)

To be sung to the tune of the Universal Soldier, by Donovan

She’s five foot-two and she’s six feet-four
She writes with reason and with rhyme
She filches folk-song tunes, and she writes new melodies
Been a filker for a long, long time…

She’s an Alto, Soprano, a tenor and a bass
A rapper, a jazz singer, out of tune
And she knows she shouldn’t pun
But she knows it’s too much fun
To pun openly or poor puns impugn

And she’s writing ‘bout politics
She’s writing ‘bout cats
She’s writing ‘bout the S.C.A
And she’s writing ‘bout computers
And she’s writing about fruit
And she thinks it doesn’t count as filk this way…

And she’s writing about Bujold
She’s writing ’bout Star Trek
She’s writing about Lackey and Heinlein
And she’s writing about Asimov, she’s writing about Wrede
And she never knows just where to draw the line…

But without her, how would Star Trek’s fleet be banned from Argo’s shores?
Without her, Greensleeves would be left alone
She’s the one who gives her lyrics
For our laughter and our tears
And without her all this filking can’t go on

She’s the universal filker, and she really is to blame
Her ideas come from far away no more
They come from here and there and you and me,
And brothers can’t you see,
This is just what bright, creative minds are for…

Song: Greensleeves will be your bane (with apologies to Henry VIII. Maybe.)

(inspired by the comment: “Do not meddle in the affairs of filkers, for they are subtle and can make your name scan to Greensleeves”, and the response that Greensleeves wasn’t a song, so much as a musical virus…)

Alas, my love, you did me wrong,
You cast me off discourteously.
Now I will mock you with a song,
Avenge myself with poetry.

Greensleeves will be your bane
Greensleeves will go round your head,
Greensleeves you will hear again,
And your name will scan to greensleeves.

My voice has broken, like my heart,
Oh, why did you so enrapture me?
Now I remain in a world apart
But my song remains to annoy thee.

Greensleeves will be your bane
Greensleeves will go round your head
Greensleeves you will hear again,
As our story scans to greensleeves…

My words were sharp, my verses stung,
My poet’s vengeance pursued thee;
But everywhere this song is sung,
All other tunes elude me

Greensleeves has been your bane
Greensleeves went round your head
Greensleeves you have heard again,
For everything scans to greensleeves…

My soul I bartered for this song
And my artistic integrity
‘Twas repetitious and too long
And far too catchy for poetry…

Greensleeves was heard in lifts
Greensleeves from ice-cream vans
Greensleeves in shopping malls,
It’s really not hard to play greensleeves…

This song is getting out of hand,
The verses run interminably,
There is no place in all the land,
That’s free of that endless melody.

Greensleeves is now my bane
Greensleeves goes round my head
Greensleeves I cannot escape,
For everything sounds like greensleeves…

Well, I will pray to God on high,
That he my tragedy mayst see,
And that yet soon before I die,
He wilt take this song from me.

Greensleeves has been my bane
Greensleeves has filled my head
Greensleeves is everywhere,
There’s no escape from greensleeves…

Ah, Greensleeves, now farewell, begone,
To God I pray to escape thee,
These verses, have run on and on
Take pity, now, and leave me.

Greensleeves has been my bane
Greensleeves has filled my head
Greensleeves has sent me mad,
There is no song but greensleeves…

Missing (with apologies to A.A. Milne)

Has anybody seen my boss?

I opened his office for half a minute,
Just to make sure he was really in it,
But the Professor was not inside!
I tried to find him, I tried, I tried…
He must be somewhere – I’m at loss.
Has anyone seen my boss?

Registrar, have you seen my boss?

Just a workaholic boss, a frequently stressed one.
He’s not good at resting, he’s quite an obsessed one,
So he’ll feel all bored on a Qantas flight;
Why, what could he possibly find to write?

He must be somewhere. I’ll ask the ward:
Have you seen a boss looking rather bored?
Oh, somewhere about –
He’s just got out…

Hasn’t anybody seen my boss?