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Once Upon a Nursery Rhyme - The Minstrels' Code

John is a freelance writer, ghost-writer, storyteller, and poet. He always tries to include a message or social commentary in his writing

Fairy Tales: Image by Yuri_B from Pixabay

Fairy Tales: Image by Yuri_B from Pixabay

Request For a Fairytale

For those of you who remember by poetry series 'Poems From the Porch', you know that I asked my readers to suggest topics or titles for poems they would like me to write. I finished that series some time ago (when comments were removed from our articles and feed) but there were still a number of requests I hadn't filled.

I have decided to still use these unused suggestions as poetry prompts now and then. Here is one request from Lora Hollings posted in Poems From the Porch 68.

"How about a poem about a fairy tale? How about Cinderella?" ~ Lora Hollings

The following is my fairy tale/nursery rhyme in response.

Metal Wall Plaque: Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

Metal Wall Plaque: Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

The Minstrels' Code

Once upon a nursery rhyme

In some old and ancient time,
lived a minstrel and a mime.

The love of art his only crime.


He travelled all across the land,

Just him and his solo band.

His gipsy wagon looked so grand,

His lyre and flute always at hand.


He entertained the village throngs,

And most people loved his songs.

His music made the weak feel strong,

It seemed to right so many wrongs.


It brought him joy to play his tunes,

Even during fierce Monsoons.

Make children sing, and lovers swoon

As they danced beneath the moon.


But there’ll always be the frowners

Who don’t trust out-of-towners.

He annoyed the pull-you-downers,

And this led to sad encounters.


Pull-you-downers: Image by 1195798 from Pixabay

Pull-you-downers: Image by 1195798 from Pixabay

Armed only with evil intent,

They said the minstrel raised dissent,

And made the younger ones resent.

Their thinking was so warped and bent.


Accusing him of unfair crimes

Like singing bawdy nursery rhymes.

Said, “Leave before the church bell chimes!”

Oh, the ignorance of those times.


He packed his wagon up that day,

His welcome he would not outstay.

They said, “You should repent and pray.”

The minstrel then went on his way.


He took his music on the road,

The gift with which he’d been bestowed

No matter what the sooth’s forebode.

To share it, was the ‘minstrels' code.’


In London Town, he’d toss his hat,

He’d heard, “That’s where the culture’s at.”

Perhaps his songs would have impact

With Lord Mayor Whittington and his cat.

Alex Hogg and Co, after Guillaume Philippe Benoist, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Alex Hogg and Co, after Guillaume Philippe Benoist, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

© 2022 John Hansen

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