classic literature

Happy Song, Sad Occasion

Leo and Sylvia have always been quite square and stuffy, but they’ve also been quite happy and agreeable about anything their less conventional friends, Gunther and Lucille would ask them to do. 



One night, the colorful couple invited the reserved couple to see a hypnotist’s show at the local public school. 



All went well at first until the Great Albondigas invited Leo and Sylvia onto the stage so they could participate. 



They both carry harmonicas with them wherever they go, so he took advantage of this.  He told them, as a post~hypnotic suggestion, that they would play ‘Pop Goes the Weasel’ on their harmonicas everytime they heard anyone say ‘His Sire was from Castile, his Dam from Aragon’.



Because of its having been such an undeniably obscure phrase, he didn’t even bother to snap them out of it before they left.


A couple of days later, the couples, along with their friends,  Francis and Hildegarde, went to a funeral for a neighbor.  Hildegarde, a somewhat neurotic English professor, was constantly mulling over her notes for the class she was to teach the next day.



At the very beginning of the funeral, Hildegarde spontaneously blurted out, ‘His Sire was from Castile, his Dam from Aragon’.  



To put it as mildly as possible, their neighbor had quite a distinctive processional song at his funeral.  



Here is my very first ever effort for Page And Line Challenge.  I have always been a compulsive bookworm, and I have a bottomless pit of literature credits among my transcripts, so I picked Line 4, from Canto XXXVIII, of George Gordon Lord Byron’s classic poem, “Don Juan”.   In my copy of a collection of Byron’s poetry, it’s on page 195. 





Required Reading

 I have two books here I’m determined to read again. I’ve chosen Emily Bronte’s ‘Wuthering Heights’, and St. Louis de Montfort’s ‘True Devotion To Mary’.



It’s time for Sammi Cox and all the rest of us to have our Weekly Writing Challenge.

Communication Breakdown

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Copy Code      John has always been quite a fan of Henry David Thoreau.   One day, to his unbounded joy, he got a telegram explaining that he had been selected to receive an all~expenses~paid trip to find out about the pride and joy of Thoreau.



“Wow!” he said to his wife Marcia. “Maybe it’s about either ‘Civil Disobedience’ or ‘Walden’.



The moment of truth finally arrived.  When they arrived at their destination, they were a bit taken aback.  “I think there’s been a misunderstanding,” Marcia said.



Welcome back to Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers.   Jean L. Hays has given us this week’s photo prompt.


Art Imitates Life

“I’ve always really liked those flowers,” Blaise told Ansgar.  “They remind me of my favorite Robert Frost poem, ‘Asking For Roses’. 

“Of course,” his friend reminded him, “He has another one too, ‘The Rose Family’, that’s quite relevant here.”

“Ha, Amateur!” the former went on. “I can top that. What about Robert Burns’ ‘My Love Is Like A Red Red Rose’?

Just then their wives showed up.  “Don’t go so crazy.  You know perfectly well those flowers aren’t even real,” Clarabelle reminded them.

“Hey, so who cares?” Edna explained.  These guys are always reciting works of fiction anway.”

Once again it’s time for Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers.   This week she has supplied the photo prompt, so I don’t have to put another link here.  We all so hope you enjoy our works of fiction.


The Bookworms


Arnold, Wendell, and Mabel were at the Jane Austen convention, for the two hundred and first anniversary of the Regency Period author’s passing.



“Remember,” Mabel told her friends, “Try to pass for really smart. We want to blend in.”



Χαίρετε” , her friends intoned in unison.



“Not quite that smart,” she chided them.



They enjoyed a nice leisurely weekend listening to speeches about life in Georgian England, and finding out all about the object of their admiration.



At the end of it all, Wendell opined:  “One of these days we should at least read something of hers.”



Welcome back yet again, one and all to Rochelle Wisoff~Fields’ Friday Fictioneers, the rules of which may be found at her site.  



Ted Strutz

has kindly agreed to supply this week’s photo prompt.

The Browning Version..A Poetry Recital


It was April 6, 1889, in Victoria’s England. Robert Browning, aged 76, was attending a party hosted by artist Rudolf Lehmann.


Colonel Gouraud brought out an Edison Talking Machine. At the company’s behest, Browning began reciting his poem, “How They Brought the Good News From Ghent To Aix”, but his memory lapsed.


“I’m sorry,” he stated. “I can’t remember me own verses, but one thing that I shall remember all me life is the astonishing…by your wonderful invention.”


He died on December 12 that year at the home of his son . Browning was the first poet whose voice was recorded for posterity.


Robert Browning 



The photo prompt was provided by Roger Bultot.  As always, Rochelle guides us weekly through Friday Fictioneers.



The Dead Writers’ Society

mindlovemiseryHarry and Blanche finally found their dream house. Having always been both nature lovers and bookworms, they’d fantasized for years about the perfect combination of their two loves.


“You’ll see, sweetheart,” the proud husband gushed. “Once all these trees start blooming, it will be such a beautiful environment.”



“Yes, Harry,” Blanche intoned. “Until then we can get our books arranged. We’ll start with the Romantic poetry and Regency period novels. Then we can move on to the Victorian novels and poetry.


You never know, of course, when Coventry Patmore and Jane Austen might stop by~or the Bronte’s and Browning’s~perhaps even the Shelley’s,” she imagined aloud.


“People will claim it can’t be done,” Harry admitted reluctantly. “‘You do understand they’re all currently deceased’, they’ll point out.”



“Little do folks know,” Blanche continued, “The rapport we’ve always had with the great literary giants of yore. Of course, all anyone needs is a library card and a keen set of eyes and ears. With our new purchase, though, we have even much more of an advantage.”



Here’s me entry, based upon a photo prompt from Tale Weaver #172



Goblin Market


“Watch out for those boots,” Mitt warned Keef as they approached the Goblin Market. “Don’t you remember what happened to Lizzie’s sister Laura?”


“They’re a reminder of the goblins,” his friend conceded. “They’ll stop at nothing to sell us their poisonous fruits.”


It’s odd,” the former continued, “How such ugly little fellows can make such an enchanting pitch. It just goes to show how delightful a charm the fruits can have.


They went on along their way, strolling past the local graveyard and mental institution. The goblins, in the background, continued their irresistible, incessant chant, determined to entice the locals.


It’s time, yet again, for Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers . Follow the link for an explanation.  Courtney Wright has supplied this week’s photo prompt.



A Faerie Tale


“You’re taking quite a gamble,” Elzo reminded Ennio. “It’s never a wise move to follow the Pipes of Pan.”


“Quite true, Old Bean!” his friend admitted. “It would be wise to beware, while we’re here, all the unicorns, rainbows, and banshees, among other risks.”


“That’s true metaphorically too,” the former continued. “Everyone knows that Keats’ ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’ wasn’t really just a lovely faerie nymphomaniac, but that she was a symbol of an obsession of his.”


“We can relax here for a while and go home better able to deal with life’s unicorns, rainbows, and banshees.”


Welcome back yet again to Friday Fictioneers where Rochelle leads us weekly through our hundred~word story. This week her husband Jan W. Fields has supplied the photo prompt.



The Rule of Three


Here’s the park where famous threesomes, real and fictional, congregate,” Ralph told Sam, to the latter’s incredulity.

“Oh yeah,” Ralph went on. “They have Stooges, Wise Men, Blind Mice, Musketeers~you name it.

“In their world they have a weird sense of humor, so often the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, or the Magnificent Seven, will try to sneak in.”

“Naturally,”  Sam admitted. “I especially like the Three Witches from ‘MacBeth.'”


“Don’t let their cutesy rhymes fool you,” Ralph warned. “They can be trouble.”


“Oh, absolutely!” Sam conceded.


This went on for a while as Sam continued to listen politely.


Here we are, yet again, for Friday Fictioneers.  Rochelle leads us weekly in our hundred~word story based upon a photo prompt.  This week’s prompt has been provided by Fatima Fakir Deria