Monday, March 12, 2007

The Gamer's Wife

Once upon a midnight highway, while I wandered on in my way
Over many a potholed street in darkness near the Jersey shore,
I was nodding, nearly napping, when there came a raucous rapping,
Like ten rusted steel bars slapping, shaking both windows and doors
"'Tis the radio," I murmured, "playing music I abhor -
Only this, and nothing more."

Turning off the screeching noises, with its damned discordant voices,
Wasn't one of my top choices, though they made my head quite sore,
For I'd nearly finished driving, and to keep myself surviving
I would need to keep on striving not to lay down on the floor
And to sleep and find my dress all covered with a bloody gore -
Which I'd washed the night before.

Finally, I reached my own street, all the lawns cut clean and grown neat -
All except my own, of course, for I'd neglected late that chore -
Stumbling from my metal carriage, I was thankful for my marriage
Knowing that I'd not disparage finding my man's swept the floor,
Done the dishes, maybe even put the silver in the drawer;
And look, he's met me at the door!

Keeping my eyes open, barely, I plain fell upon him, squarely,
Knocking both of us into a heap upon the hallway floor;
Then I said, "Just drag me gently to my bed, and incidentally,
If you'd take my clothes off on the way, I promise to adore
You for it in the morning, but now please don't mind me while I snore."
Only this, and nothing more.

Maybe I was sore projecting; not, I must admit, expecting
Him to calmly roll me off and pick himself up off the floor;
Off'ring me his outstretched hand, he, in manner spry and grand,
Indicated I should stand and turn and look the table o'er
I did arch an eyebrow at him as he pointed and implored,
Speaking "Look!" and nothing more.

Moaning, I stood up and glanced then, wondering what had more entranced him
Than his poor and tired wife who wanted sleep and nothing more;
There, upon the kitchen table, as I stood and swayed, unstable,
My eyesight was blurred but able now to tally up the score
There was box and board and rules and dice and plastic men galore,
His birthday present: BattleLore

"What about it?" I retorted, looking at the dishes, sordid
Still unwashed and heaped unsorted as they were the night before;
Well, at least the floor I stepped upon appeared to have been swept
I figured, seeing how inept the broom was hung from closet door;
Then I felt more shock then I had ever thought I could endure -
Asked my husband: "BattleLore?"

"Oh my God! You must be joking! What the Hell have you been smoking?
I am faint and fairly croaking here upon the kitchen floor!"
Set on his unholy mission, I could see he didn't listen,
I could see his eyeballs glisten and into my own did bore,
An aching started in my head and quickly did become a roar;
Asked my husband: "BattleLore?"

"Go away, you rotten creep! I am sore in need of sleep
And to bed I now retreat, if I can find the bedroom door.
You can stay and get your jollies playing with your plastic dollies
Just be quiet playing, please. Oh, one thing more I must implore:
Please try not to wake me when you come to bed at half past four."
Asked my husband: "BattleLore?"

"Ah! You most obnoxious husband! Midnight games are not what I planned;
Even your brain, made of quicksand, must about this point be sure ...
Anyway, this game's annoying, not the sort that I'm enjoying,
Too much repetition, fiddly rules, and luck, which I abhor,
Come, let's play a hand of Gin and then I'll sleep forevermore."
Asked my husband: "BattleLore?"

"Ah! You masochistic cretin! Don't you know you'll just get beaten
Once again you'll be retreatin' while I kill your troops galore.
What a foul and tedious present that I gave you, how I relent!
Seeing as you're now all Hell bent set on even'ing up the score;
What's our record now? Oh, yes. I've beat you twenty-three to four."
Murmured hubbie: "Twenty-four."

So coerced again, unwilling, into wholesale carnage, killing
All his troops - oh joy, how thrilling - in - I'll charitably call - a war,
My head nods upon my forearm, as he tries to save from more harm
His remaining legions now surrounded and trapped on the shore;
I think fondly, "Idiot, but my idiot which I do adore."
While he plays, I soundly snore.



Unknown said...

Beautiful. You vocabulary, POE-etic mimicry, and gamerness are way way way impressive.


Yehuda Berlinger said...

Thanks, Chuck.