The Laughing Glass by Laura J. Bobrow
The king and all his kingdom were in crisis.
The walls were going to crumble in an instant
unless they could come up with a deception,
a plan which would be mighty in its substance,
a way to stay the imminent disaster.
The jester, who was rarely deemed effective,
said, “Sire, I have an item proved effective.
It works for me when I am in a crisis.
Although it may not save you from disaster,
you’re bound to feel contented in an instant.
Within this glass I hold there is a substance.
It looks like air, but that’s a mere deception.”
(Pure air it was, but he knew that deception
had but to be believed to be effective.)
“Breathe deeply of my special laughing substance
and soon you will forget about the crisis.
You’ll find that you’ll be chuckling in an instant,
and saying to yourself, ‘Eh? What disaster?’”
The king sighed, “Air won’t mitigate disaster,
but what’s my choice? It may be a deception,
but give it here. I’ll try this very instant.”
He took a mighty snort. It was effective,
and laughter soon became the only crisis
as queen and courtiers clamored for the substance.
The cooks and soldiers, too, inhaled the substance.
The cats and dogs guffawed out loud. Disaster
dissolved in mirth, and glee subsumed the crisis.
Their enemies, caught up in the deception,
now brandished swords completely ineffective
as war was turned to bliss within an instant.
The walls? Oh yes. They tumbled the next instant,
for merriment is not a thing of substance.
It works in other ways to be effective.
The king no longer grieved at his disaster.
The jester was spot-on about deception.
He sighed, “Well done. There goes another crisis.”
So here’s a cure, effective in a crisis.
When threatened by an instant of disaster
try Laughing Glass, the substance of deception.
© 2016 Laura J. Bobrow
Laura J. Bobrow is an author, poet and nationally-acclaimed storyteller. She was once dubbed “The American Milne” by then U.S. Poet Laureate Louis Untermeyer, and she has since been likened in print to Hilaire Belloc and Edward Lear. Her work has appeared in more than 50 venues including a fourth grade textbook in Abu Dhabi. A picture book, “The Captain’s Beard,” was published in 1995 by Riverside Press and poetry chapbooks “The Book of Names” Kelsay Press and “Betrayed” Finishing Line Press followed. Her CD’s include “I Wrote These for You,” “Story Poems,” “From the Heart,” “Strange Stories,” and “Just Hanging Out” (winner of a 2009 Storytelling World award.)