Ye Mensans Tale (1987)

Upon ye shore of Brainia ther restes
A scolehous for administeringe testes,
Where every month (exceptinge seche a day
Whan Uranus ys in ye Lionnes weye),
A statelye procktore gathers uppe a crowde
Whose constitutors feel most y-endowed
With prowesse in ye regioun twixt ye eares
To bolster al their adverserryes feares,
And who are sekinge oute a potentate
Whose imprimatur lendes their clayme somme weyt.
These applickants are masters of ye arte
Of doinge thyngs that are pirceved as smarte,
And, while they may beleeve it ys a joke,
Can see no harme in meetinge other folke
Whose curiositee in this regarde
(Id este, if they can erne a Mensa carde)
Alreadye shwes a common intereste
Which, folwed by ye passinge of ye teste,
May leade to social outinges of a kynde
That take into ackounte anothers mynde
And helpe to make a thinker feele at ease
By cerebratinge frelye whan it plese.
Now, happe it did upon this wekende morne
(Ye seckonde deckanate of Capricorn)
That pensyls of a number two degree
Turned out to be ye only absentee.
"Dear aspirants," ye procktore did us greete,
"It seemes that we have mannidged to depleete
Our ratioun of a moste important toole—
Or I be meyde to simulate a foole."
Ye procktore, an adminystratyve type
And therfor of a pragmatistyck strype,
Determined as a normil consequennse
To delegate an erand uppsteres, whennes
Amongst ye parsyls all yspleyed above
Ther myght be gleaned sufissient cartons of
Ye implement required by al involved—
If seche be true, ye matter be resolved.
"We need but one appointee for ye jaunte.
Lets see," quod she, "which lackye do I wante?"
Unfortunatlye, whom wode she sellect
But "THEE"—a judgement sorlye incoreckt,
For I was stil emerginge from my slepe
And hoped it wolde be posyble to crepe
Without obtrusyvenesse into ye mobbe,
Do what I must and, fynyshed with ye jobbe,
Slynke similarlye out ageyn to be
Rejuvenatinge of my energee,
For nothyng koude alowe me to deleye
My supermarket trecke upon that day.
(Ye arugola stalkes were growinge lympe,
Aleged newe potatoes al ycrympe—
And how colde I be chokolatlesse now,
Preparinge as I was my social bowe?
But thottes as these must nat be gyven roome—
My streme of consiousnesse wolde spel my doome.)
"Um—posiblye yow might depickt ye way,
To minimyze ye otherwyse delay?
I normily atende another scole,"
I seyd (altho ye truthe ys, as a rule,
I nary ever do a thyng that we
Shode chuse to modifye as "normily").
At this ye procktore skepticaly leered—
Hir anser was as simple as I feared:
"I tel thee that thou hast ye wherwithal
To finde ye dore y-locate down ye hol!"
This meche was true. "I thanke yow." Then I lefte
Ye testinge site, its ockupants berefte
Of what they now entrusted me to fynde—
A vote of confydense I had a mynde!
Now al I had to do was consentrate
And nat alowe myself to codgitate—
I muste see only that before my ye,
So that my mynde wode noght absentifye.
Ye findinge of ye dore was quickly donne,
Because it was ye only other one
That did nat open to ye oute-of-dores,
Wher cormorantes alyned allong ye shores
Awaitinge—but alredy now I dryfte;
My consentracioun often tendes to shyfte
To flyghtier than necesarye things.
This tendensie to scater notice brings
Concomitant confucioun whan a task
Of mynor dificultee others aske;
Whan I use nat my ful capasitee,
Then thottes rush in wher emptinesse wode be.
Now as I placed my hande upon ye dore
Behind wich lay ye parsyls al y-store,
It strucke me that ye paterne of ye nobbe
Was masterfuly donne, as good a jobbe
As sene within ye chappel set upon
Ye promontorie on an yland yon,
Wich specktackle most prominently shwed
As earlier I trode allong the rode
And, wel ahed of skedule comminge here,
Had taken tyme to sense ye atmosfere
And fede what I wolde wisshe sommeday to be
My kene esthetic sensibilitee,
Pirsute wherof semed so meche more worth whyle—
Ye scolehous storeroome semed nat quite my style.
And so it was somme seckondes ere I thoght
That I sholde maybe turn ye nobbe a jotte
And folwe throgh with what I was asyned,
Althogh it be elussyve of my mynde.
Within ye darke proseded I to grope.
Ye power-swicche then cayme into my scope,
And al ye roome ylumminated was.
I caste my yes aroond to fynde ye cawse
Wherby I cayme to be in seche a plays.
At lingthe I spyd a most peckuliar cayse:
Positiouned undernethe ye fussebox lay
Al printoutes boond and stored from yestirday,
Their lingthes and wydthes combyninge to produce
A facktore of ye roomes hypotenusse
That corysponded favourablye to
My tempiratyur when I hadde ye flu,
Dyvyded by ye distense here in myles
And added to ye number of ye pyles.
Ye summe exprest in bynaree, I newe,
Thus gave our adresse multiplyed by two.
Wheron I saw this two colde only be
Dyvynely chossen as a softe degree
Of pensyl, wich in facte was what I cayme
To fecche and take to classe, ye verrye sayme.
And so ageyn, my confydense renewed,
I took advantidge of my sollitude
To spredde my handes a pensyl-lingthe appart;
To messure al ye boxes did I starte,
Secure that sholde I chanse upon ye one
Ye sight of wich wolde mene my jobbe was donne,
Its messuremente wolde then aproxymate
That which my handes atempted to relate,
So even if my gole I sholde forget,
My memoree wolde properlye reset.
Now as I past allong ye dustye wal
In serche of one apropriatlee smal,
What then wolde happen but upon my eare
A ravinouse moskitow sholde apeare.
Strayt to my brayn ye buz did ressonate.
Instinctyvelye my hande did gravytate
And felled ye insekt with a myghty swotte.
My planne had fayld. My fyngers now wer nat
Positiouned for their pirposse as bifore;
Dysrupted was my mynde, and firthermor,
My actioun, in ye tymspanne of a brethe,
Hadde broght abbout a most untymlee dethe;
To sayve one droppe of blude, I saw it fitte
A lyvinge creture fatalye to hitte.
My callosse dede now jolted me to see
Ye speckter of my own mortalitee,
A grimme remynder of how meche was wirth
My meger span of tyme upon ye erthe;
Ye osseans, most relentlessely they poond,
Indyfyrent to who may be aroond.
So fryghtful did this revylatioun seem
(As thogh within a pepyronee dreme,
And here within this dustye lytyl spayce)
That wel I senced my mortil fal from grayce
And topylled straitawey onto a stakke
Of cartons playced direcktly nethe a rakke
Of mettil shellvinge rechinge high and tal,
Which shooke with forse, and therfrom dropt a smal
But weghty pakkidge no-one wolde have sene
Untill it nokked me squarely on ye bene.
Now as I lay sirveyinge ye dibree,
I rubbed my hede, and lo, colde plainly see,
Thogh I hadde started lowe allong ye wal,
My catche sat on ye hyghest shelfe of al;
While I had nat exacktly ussed my brains,
Stil I acheeved my pirposse for my pains.
Ye cleninge of ye messe woude have to wait;
Ye teste was now alredy runninge late,
And it was up to me that I reterne
In soonest tyme, and therby wolde I erne
Ye prayse of al those soon to be my peres.
Enfused with inteleckt wolde be their cheres!
Now brave and true I boonded out ye dore
With pensyls in my dexter hand gallore,
And sped with haste unto ye testinge syte
To proove to al that I was truely bright.
In reckord tyme I came upon ye sene.
A! nay! ye roome had been disserted clene!
Ye procktore stood allone ammongst ye chairs,
Hirself preparinge acksess to ye stairs.
"Ye reste of them al chose to take a vote,"
She stated as she slipt into hir coat,
"And they decyded since ther was a jobbe
That fel to this unluckye lytle slobbe,
Who gave no fight, that gifted al they were
That in their own behaffe you did defer.
That they had al escaped ye boobee pryze
By them was demed a forme of beeinge wise;
This stroke of lucke had quickly made their day
And they now saw no reeson for to stay.
Avoydence of ye menest types of werke
Ys seen as smarte, thou sillye lytle jerke.
A canndidate for Mensa has to be
Posest of yndividualitee,
Or ellse my name be not Yolanda Grunth.
And so that's all! Ta-ta! come back next month!"





5




10




15




20




25




30




35




40




45




50




55




60




65




70




75




80




85




90




95




100




105




110




115




120




125




130




135




140




145




150




155




160




165




170




175




180




185




190




195




200

 

Carson Restoration Archive Project
HomeSite map
Spoken word: Digital Readout TrilogyRadio spots
Music: Bulbous!Other songsInstrumentals
Text: WritingsPuzzles