Aunt Mabel

        Mother Streusel

Whenever we have dinner

At the home of my Aunt Mabel,

I must be extra careful

And polite while at the table.

Mother Streusel

Aunt Mabel is quite sensitive

To any sign of crudeness,

And I never can predict what words

Offend her with their rudeness.

Mother Streusel

She asks me what I’m learning

And expects me to reply.

I try to answer safely,

But things often go awry.

Mother Streusel

One year it was the alphabet.

What problems could there be?

Aunt Mabel lost her temper

When I said the letter P.

Mother Streusel

Aunt Mabel started choking

Upon a piece of onion

When I said my class had read

The tall tale of Paul Bunyan.

Mother Streusel

One year we got into a fight.

She said that I began it,

Because I said uranus

While listing off each planet.

Mother Streusel

You doubt she is that sensitive?

I promise you that it’s true.

Last year she nearly sent me home

When I said the word shampoo.

Mother Streusel

Mother Streusel

© 2014 Karyn Linnell

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The ABC’s

        Mother Streusel

I told my little brother,

“Now that you are three

It’s time for me to teach you

About A, B and C.”

Mother Streusel

He said, “I know those letters.”

I asked, “Do you indeed?”

He said, “Of course I do.

I can even read.”

Mother Streusel

I decided I would test him.

I figured he was lying.

“A is for…” “Banana,”

He answered without trying.

Mother Streusel

“A is for banana?

It certainly is not!”

“B-A-n-A-n-A.

Yep. Three A’s, like I thought.”

Mother Streusel

“No, A is for apple.”

“But apple just has one.

There’s more A’s in banana,

And now can we be done?”

Mother Streusel

“No, let’s do B now.”

“Okay. Flibbertigibbet.

There’s no word that I know of

With more B’s to exhibit.”

Mother Streusel

I nearly lost my temper

But I thought, “He’s only three.”

I took a breath and tried again

With the letter C.

Mother Streusel

“I’ll try to ask a different way

So you’ll know what I mean.

Can you tell me what ‘Car’ starts with?”

He said, “Yes, with gasoline.”

© 2014 Karyn Linnell