Publication Date: March, 2019
Location: poetsonline.org, then go to Archive, then ‘Seussical’.
Genesis: The rather curious-sounding prompt was actually to write something in the style of Theodore Geisel, otherwise known (and loved) as Dr. Seuss. His work was aimed at children, and brilliantly helped them in early language acquisition by using repetition and catchy rhymes that could almost be remembered without trying, after a few bedtime read-throughs with Mum or Dad. In another instance of beautiful synchronicity, I’d had the two lines that appear in every verse except for the last one: “And I like it now more / Than I liked it before” for a few months. I liked the beat of them, and they were just looking for the right home. They were my starting point, and the rest of the poem almost built itself around them.
I lie on the floor And I like it now more Than I liked it before When it was rather a bore To lie on the floor. I hear a crow caw And I like it now more Than I liked it before When it made my ears sore To hear a crow caw. I walk by the shore And I like it now more Than I liked it before With my gold Labrador As I walk by the shore. I am breaking the law And I like it now more Than I liked it before – In prison for four, Just for breaking the law! They’ve sent me to war And I like it now more Than I liked it before All the blood and the gore That you see in a war. A hailstorm of lead. I’m hit twice in the head. The world’s turning red, Holding on by a thread. Soon I’ll be dead.