I asked for engineering failures and terrible poetry, and everyone delivered. In fact, you all delivered so well that I’ve been debating the same six poems back and forth for a few hours.
Since our literary failures do not mean a literal catastrophic result, however, I’ll leave you in suspense no longer. The winner is Bruce Goodman.
Thou wert my gate
Thou wert my gate
in the fence of life;
a doorway in the
corridor of existence;
a hole in the
wall of being
Now you have shut the
entrance to your heart
and I am shattered into a pile of quaking reinforced concrete .
No more will I hear your euphonious voice
wafting over the plastic barrier of time;
no more will my nostrils sense the scent
of your hair on the yellow brick road of vivacity.
Oh the audacity!
You have become an engineering failure,
a total engineering failure;
in fact you are the biggest engineering failure
I have ever encountered in my life.
And you are fat.
I wish you all the Botox you can lay your hands on.
You need it.
You have no reason to blow your own trumpet
for thou art a total engineering failure!
Thou wert my gate
in the fence of life
but now you are just a pile of rocks –
to say nothing of your choice in tasteless frocks.
Like I said, many poems were contenders at the end. I liked the short and sweet of a few; the long and rambling of the others. I like the lessons taught, the meters distraught, and the rhymes that were naught …good.
Bruce’s contribution ultimately won because it sounds very serious and poetic in many ways: word choice, alliterative references, more serious meter. Then, we’ve got the completely misplaced “And you are fat. / I wish you all the Botox you can lay your hands on. / You need it.” His final stanza returns us to the original serious poeming with the humorous element he dropped on us like an indigestible rock.
Again, not that the other poems didn’t give Bruce a run for his nonexistent money. I loved them all, and know you will too:
An Engineer’s Lament
by Deb Whittam
Oh let us lament
The failures we must confront
Oft it is not us
The engineers proclaim
It’s that other thing
Which is to blame
We see your look of doubt
But let me tell you with clout
It’s true you see
It’s the pressure valves fault, not me.
They once built a bridge to a star
Oh, that’s so incredibly far
But relativity it seems
Is more than bad dreams
So the warped space time continuum over the light years, uhm, yeah, uhm, made it hard to reach by car?
yeah, that’s it, made it hard to reach by car.
I once built a bridge, that is true
One to reach from me over to you
But my skill was too weak
So it fell in the creek
And now I’m terribly blue
First Thing’s First
I built a
At first it wouldn’t bark
Then it wouldn’t hark
To anything I said.
It swam there, tarried there
And drove me to Timbuktu
When I wanted to go to Malibu.
So I shot it
In the hull
And now the problem, I think, is solved.
Glub, glub, glub.
Oh dear. What whim.
There’s only one thing for it: Can I swim?
Casey Jones, you big dummy.
You drove the train too fast and you crashed.
And then you died.
(Note to reader: insert head shake here)
This poem’s apposed to be about engineering fails
and not engineer fails?
Well color me stupid.
I can’t carry a tune in a bucket
and I guess I can’t read directions so just…
…don’t buck it.
The New Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
‘Twas a springtime morning out in old Lindenhurst when Tommy O’Leary decided to make him a car.
So he put on his very bestest greenest threads as he burst out with joy to all his assembled friends: ‘My Chitty Chitty Bang Bang moment awaits, I tell you!!’
The local townsfolk have sworn since then, that a raven and peacock flew by flew by, that a raven and peacock flew by.
‘Within five weeks my five step process’ , says he, ‘will yield a spectacular car, a car. It will yield a spectacular car.
To his shame he made it of light balsa wood and that didn’t bode well in a crash a crash. No that didn’t bode well in a crash.
The December morning air smelled cool, fresh,
Coals of industry a faint background scent.
Bhopal contained an old pesticide plant
That employed locals and brought in money.
The methyl isocyanate
Built pressure in the old vessels,
But the aging pipes and valves failed.
They thought the meter
Failed and went on home
To leave the pressure
Building on and on.
Agony of 3,787 deaths
Many more injuries, some severe
No litigation could repay this woe
But it failed to bring justice anyway.
Innocents were killed, but money was made,
Fulfilling the prophecy of profit.
The master designer has failed
He really should be put into jail
He gave her six toes
And a long pointy nose
She now wears a long dark veil
The DNA put in her body
Was very very naughty
It made her get sick
Turned her muscles to ick
That is the end of this story
Anatomical Mars vs Venus
by Violet Lentz
purported as divine creation
supposedly perfect in every way
I have reason to believe, the plans were drafted
on the of’t disputed creators, off day.
with the parts over here
being just enough off
from the parts they’re
to connect with over there
practice and patience
are often required-
which could take till long after
the ‘use by date’ had expired
so ‘creation one’ took the problem in hand
and after a hormonal cocktail or two
one upped creation with video porn, so now we look good-
doing what we still can’t figure out, how to do.
Epic fail I declare
The engineer used defective parts
Was he not aware
Of the pain I must bear
Or does he really not care
I see the best in folk
Giving the benefit of doubt
Eagerly seeking the good
Leaving the bad to one side
F*** it in this case
A complete bellend
Arrogant and spiteful
Greedy and self serving
Egotistical political parasite
This entire project was always quite cursed
There’s a crack in the dam it’s gonna burst!
As engineers go, I’m definitely the worst
They may as well have hired Fred Durst
So I’m off with my suitcase full of money
Off to the fabled land of milk and honey
In a way you could say it’s almost funny
Now I’m off to a place that’s quiet and sunny.
Thanks everyone, you terrible poets you! Come back tomorrow for next week’s prompt!
Bruce: D. Wallace Peach created this graphic that you can use (if you want) for a badge of honor as the winner: