A Pedestrian’s Prayer

[  # 89 of My Favourite Short Poems  ]

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WHB … 2018

Prayer of a Poor Pedestrian

O God, who filled all heaven with stars
And then all earth with motor cars,
Make room within thy cosmic plan
For me, a poor pedestrian.

Spread Thou before me, I entreat,
A threadlike pathway for my feet;
And do thou watch me lest I stray
From this, Thy straight and narrow way.

Give me an ear, alert, acute,
For each swift car’s peremptory hoot:
Teach me to judge its headlong pace
And dodge it with a nimble grace.

When driver’s looks and words are black
Restrain me, Lord, from answering back:
O bless me with a nature meek
To bear with smiles each narrow squeak.

And if one day Thy watchful eye
Should be withdrawn, and I should die,
One boon I crave, upon my knees:
Exonerate the driver, please.

This poem is re-printed from Gyles Brandreth’s ‘The Joy of Lex’ (Robson Books 1987). It was originally published in ‘Prayers and Graces’ by Allen M.Laing. Pan Books, 1981.

 

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A Poetic Formula

 (Poem No.51 of my favourite short poems) 

A Poetic Formula

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A dozen, a gross and a score

Plus 3 times the square root of 4

Divided by 7

Plus 5 times 11

Is  9 squared

And not a bit more.

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This ingeniously composed equation and the accompanying verse is quoted in Gyles Brandreth’s 2015 book ‘Word Play’ (Coronet Books – Hodder and Stoughton), as a composition by the playwright, Tom Stoppard. 

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