A Parody on Sara Henderson Hay’s “Story Hour”

Mama, I remember:
The Dragon, The Bad Fairy.
The Princess and The Sleeper.
(And The Sleepwaker too) …
And the death of Humpty Dumpty.
As he sat upon the wall.

Mama, I remember:
The Housewife and The Formula.
And The Message to the Vigilantes.
The Warrior and The Bird’s Nest.
The Flaw  —
And Rapunzel in the tower.

Mama, I remember:
‘Midst the laughter and the wails.
A host of children’s nursery rhymes.
And wicked old folk tales.
Told in bland verse by the poet.
Dearest Sara Henderson Hay.

Mama, I remember:
These — and many, many more.
As I sat upon your lap.
And you read these tales to me.
Rumpelstiltskin was a favorite.
How I liked to say his name.

Mama, I remember:
The Witch, The Goosegirl.
The Princess and the Pea.
The Ginger Bread Boy story.
How he fled from the oven.
How he ran so far away.

Mama, I remember:
How I listened with such glee.
Sitting so delightfully.
On the floor, by your knees.
Mama, I remember
And my memory is here to stay.

About this poem

Sara Jane Henderson Hay (1936-2005) was an Australian pastoralist author and poet whom I admired greatly, and who became a household name after the publication of her autobiography “From Strength to Strength” published in 1993 about her pastoral life spent building “Bullo River” cattle station in Australia’s Northern Territory. What brings back fondest memory of her for me is her book, “Story Hour,” a compilation of such well known children’s tales as “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “Little Red Riding Hood,” which Sara Henderson Hay puts enchanting spins on, revealing in the process, hidden gems of meaning brought to light through her interpretive lenses, courting us, and inviting us to savor them afresh, like a newly-baked plum pudding ready for hearty consumption. This poem, “A Parody of Sara Henderson Hay’s ‘Story Hour’,” composed in 1986, was written with a two-fold objective: to honor the legacy of Sara Henderson Hay as author and poet, and to forever cherish, honor, celebrate, and pay homage to the tender loving nurturing care my own mother, Leila Evadne Neysmith Folkes, provided me, and who, with her own gift of a poet’s tongue, instilled in me the everlasting love of poetry. Surely, my cup runneth over. 

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Written on May 02, 1986

Submitted by karlcfolkes on March 16, 2022

Modified on March 06, 2023

1:05 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme Abaxbc Axdxxa Aexexf Axxbxx Acbbxf AbbdAf
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 977
Words 217
Stanzas 6
Stanza Lengths 6, 6, 6, 6, 6, 6

Karl Constantine FOLKES

Retired educator of Jamaican ancestry with a lifelong interest in composing poetry dealing particularly with the metaphysics of self-reflection; completed a dissertation in Children’s Literature in 1995 at New York University entitled: An Analysis of Wilhelm Grimm’s “Dear Mili” Employing Von Franzian Methodological Processes. The subject of the dissertation concerned the process of Individuation. more…

All Karl Constantine FOLKES poems | Karl Constantine FOLKES Books

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