One of the reasons I love poetry has got to be because of my grandpa, Charles Horn. He loved reading and reciting poems. He memorized quite a few throughout his life. I enjoyed listening him recite in cadence and rhythm. He would get lost in them, it seems.
As a treat for you, I am sharing one of my grandpa’s favorite poems. I remember him reading this and stopping to laugh and dry his eyes from the humor he found in it. This remarkable little rhyme was published in a small volume entitled Bawdy Ballads and Lusty Lyrics: A Curious Collection of Somewhat Salty Classics Seldom Sung in Sunday Schools, edited by John Henry Johnson, published by Maxwell Droke, Indianapolis, 1935.
The Romance of Rex[A Tale of a Pedigreed Piddlin’ Pup in Ten Piddles and a Puddle]Piddle No. 1A farmer’s dog came into town,His Christian name was Rex,A noble pedigree had heUnusual was his text.And as he trotted down the streetT’was beautiful to seeHis work on every corner —His work on every tree.Piddle No. 2He watered every gateway too,And never missed a postFor piddling was his specialtyAnd piddling was his boast.The City Curs looked on amazedWith deep and jealous rageTo see a simple country dogThe piddler of the age.Piddle No. 3Then all the dogs from everywhereWere summoned with a yell,To sniff the country stranger o’erAnd judge him by the smell.Some thought that he a king might beBeneath his tail a rose,So every dog drew near to himAnd sniffed it up his nose.Piddle No. 4They smelled him over one by oneThey smelled him two by twoAnd noble Rex, in high disdain,Stood still till they were thru.Then just to show the whole shebangHe didn’t give a damHe trotted in a grocery storeAnd piddled on a ham.Piddle No. 5He piddled in a mackerel keg —He piddled on the floor,And when the grocer kicked him outHe piddled through the door.Behind him all the city dogsLined up with instinct trueTo start a piddling carnivalAnd see the stranger through.Piddle No. 6They showed him every piddling postThe had in all the town,And started in with many a winkTo pee the stranger down.They sent for champion piddlersWho were always on the go,Who sometimes did a piddling stuntOr gave a piddle show.Piddle No. 7They sprung these on him suddenlyWhen midway in the town;Rex only smiled and polished offThe ablest, white or brown.For Rex was with them every trickWith vigor and with vimA thousand piddles more or lessWere all the same to him.Piddle No. 8So he was wetting merrilyWith hind leg kicking high,When most were hoisting legs in bluffAnd piddling mighty dry,On and on, Rex sought new groundsBy piles and scraps and rust;Till every city dog went dryAnd piddled only dust.Piddle No. 9But on and on went noble RexAs wet as any rill,And all the champion city pupsWere pee’d to a standstill.The Rex did free-hand piddlingWith fancy flirts and flitsLike “double dip” and gimlet twist”And all those latest hits.Piddle No. 10And all the time this country dogDid never wink or grin,But piddled blithely out of townAs he had piddled in.The PuddleThe city dogs conventions heldTo ask “What did defeat us?”But no one ever put them wiseThat Rex had diabetes.