Friday, March 27, 2015

Quenching a Thirst at the Old Fountains

https://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/2015/03/27/sol15-day27/


Today is Poetry Friday, hosted by Jone at Check It Out
I'm in with a monorhyme today for both Poetry Friday AND Heidi Mordhorst's My Juicy Little Universe AND Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Challenge.  This is the last day of Heidi's challenge to write a poem with a required ending 'ch' word.  And we are nearing the end of TWT SOLC....just a few more days left.  Then I will begin the A-to-Z Challenge.  I have a theme of sorts and there will be a poem a day to celebrate Poetry Month and to go with my theme.  I have not pre-written or scheduled any posts for April so far.  Usually I have a number of them ready to go, alleviating the burden on some of the busier days.  We will see how THAT goes!

The word today is "QUENCH".  Because I wrote a monorhyme for it, there are a lot of ending ch words...  I liked the last line because it actually has two -ch words.  Get it?

What to Say and How to Say It

Shovel divulges, “I’ll trench.”
Tired back stresses, “I’ll wrench.”
Waterfall gushes, “I’ll quench.”
Coach advises, “I’ll bench.”
Rain insinuates, “I’ll drench.”
Fist determines, “I’ll clench.”
Muscle man proclaims, “I’m hench!”
Skunk alerts us, “I’ve stench!”
La jeune fille dit, "I'm French."

©Donna JT Smith, 2015


Drinking Fountain, Central Park - Library of Congress image

Do you remember town drinking fountains?  They used to be on many street corners.  They were the old fashioned "water bottles" that people carry around today.  Back then, when you were out and about and needed to quench your thirst, you could just step on the lever or turn a handle, and later push a button I guess, to bring up an arc of water to your lips.   And if you were short, you either climbed the fountain or had to be lifted up to get your drink.

It never really occurred to us that they were probably not the cleanest things to drink from.  You figured if you didn't put your mouth on it, it should be clean.  But some people did put their mouths on it, especially if the flow was low.  And then, they WERE outside - you could have bugs landing on it, and birds flying overhead.  Occasionally you would see gum spit out in the basin.

But we seemed to survive regardless of the germs we encountered.  That was back in the day when smallpox and polio had just been "conquered" fairly well, but most people were still pretty aware of the dangers of using public facilities. 

Which reminds me too, do you remember having to pay a nickel to use the restroom?  Often there were stalls that were free, but the ones you paid for were supposed to be kept up and cleaned better.  I believe I climbed under a stall door once or twice to let my aunt use a pay toilet on a road trip we took to Florida when I was a kid.  Hmm.  I wonder if they cleaned those floors better, too.

18 comments:

  1. This was very interesting, complete with the old fountain...I don't remember paying a nickel...however, in Ecuador it is always 25 cents to use public restrooms, usually they hope for more. xo nanc

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    1. Wow! It's quite expensive to use the restroom in Ecuador. Hope it doesn't catch on here again!

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  2. Enjoyed your poem! I was trying to figure out why there are two -ch's in the last line and I still don't know... tell me!

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    1. Ok, I'm heading over to your place to post the answer! Anyone who wants to know can go to your place!
      http://tabathayeatts.blogspot.com/2015/03/making-mistakes.html

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  3. Growing up I think I would hit every water fountain we passed never giving any thought to who might have used it before me or who will use it after me. Enjoyed your poem, although like Tabatha, I don't know the second -ch. I will check out your post at her site. Never took French so if that is where it is it's lost on me.

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    1. Yes, it's all in the French! Ha! Sorry! I was tickled when I remembered some French and could write it! It's been a couple of years or more...
      You'll love Tabatha's post today!

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  4. Donna -- this is such a clever poem. I love how each line works in the "CH" word, but also has its own voice.

    My British grandmother used to say "I have to spend a penny" as a toilet for needing the restroom. Shows you how long ago she grew up.

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    1. I never heard that phrase! I love that. Too bad things like that get lost - time goes by and we just never know why someone would use a particular wording.

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  5. So clever, Donna. Like Laura, I love that each line has a distinct voice, and the verb choice is perfect for each. I don't remember public water fountains outside of school, but I used those often enough. Wouldn't dream of using one now, though!

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    1. This was a fun poem. Began with the verb "says" in my second rendition. Boring.
      I used to use the water fountains at school, too, in my early teaching...never would now. I'd sooner fill a cup at the bathroom sink. But bottled water would be my first choice for school now.

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  6. What a fun poem, and you've done it so cleverly. I laughed aloud with delight. I love the language turn at the end. This makes me want to choose a rhyme ending and try something similar--maybe with some clever friends.

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    1. This poem had two or three renditions before this "appeared" and took over. It was one of those fun writes that looked similar to its beginnings but morphed itself as I sat in front of it! Love when that happens.

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  7. Your post is so interesting! I enjoyed reading the "ch" poem. The story about the water fountain is a great story, too. I don't recall two water fountains on street corners or having to pay at public restrooms. I'm wonder if this is a regional thing since I've always lived in the Midwest.

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    1. Well, it may be an AGE thing! They got rid of both by the time I was an adult.

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  8. Fun to see your last poem, & look forward to your A to Z, Donna. I will contribute to some posts, but really don't know if I can do every day as I've done in the past. I'll see if I can organize it this week, my spring break. Yes, I remember the water fountains. My mother would not let us drink from them. And I do remember the "pay" toilets, always seemed unfair to me. Who creates these ideas!

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    1. It is such a busy month! I'm going to see how I do with "winging it"! I only have so much time to prepare...because it's pretty much already here!

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  9. LOVE this poem. You and Tabatha both nailed it this week.

    I have not pre-written any poems yet, either. Maybe I'll spend some time getting the pages ready so that I can use all my energy on the poems. I'm thinking I'll try to blend my PO-EMotions with some double L words (Jone) and some A-Zs with you. Multitasking will either boost my creativity or push me over the edge. :-) We'll just have to see...

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    1. I've started getting the pages ready...labeling with the letters and scheduling them...Hopefully I will have something ON the page before it posts itself! I find the multitasking does boost my creativity, but if I were still teaching it would probably push me over the edge! I'm guest posting on Laura Shovan's in April and adding to the progressive poem, besides the poem a day in A-Z. Gave some thought to LL's with Jone, still post for Poetry Jam weekly...I don't know... yes, we will just have to see! Maybe we can meet somewhere "Over the Edge" and do coffee!

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