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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Shitbox, Reshaped

(Numero uno tonight: My latest ZuG zaniness is over at Zolton’s Facebook Follies: The Million Fan Farce. Check it.)

Every once in a while, I rehash an old post. I never just reach back and flop it on the table, of course. Instead, I recraft a topic. I take another angle, explore a hidden wrinkle, or tack on a new perspective.


Oh, futility, mostly. It’s usually to turn an old piece into some sort of submission for a contest or book or something. Does it ever work?

Sometimes. Does it ever not work?


The latest of these non-workings was a poem — yeah, that’s right, ladies, a poem — that I wrote six years ago, plus a little. I liked the poem. I was even kind of proud of my poem.

But it wasn’t done. So when a poetry contest crossed my radar a few months ago, I thought, “what the hell — let’s polish that turd“.

And polish I did. And turd I submitted. Did the turd win the day, or place, or show, or be honorably turdly mentioned?

No. Not this time. But as always, my soul-crushing failures are your “bonus content”. So here, once again — and six years in the “making”, sort of, is:

Grandma In a Shitbox Ford

One bleary morning in my ‘hood,

I dashed for work, as well I should.

One focus for my foggy head:

Put pavement ‘twixt my ass and bed.

I schlepped out to my trusty auto;

The music down, my voce sotto —

Naive to who’d soon yank my cord:

The grandma in the shitbox Ford.

Away sped I from the garage,

Sans automotive entourage;

The streets, it seemed, were mine alone;

My deluxe private driving zone.

“But lurking on Route Twenty-Eight — A blue-haired beast of steel and hate.

But lurking on Route Twenty-Eight —

A blue-haired beast of steel and hate.

She’d fix my wagon, rest assured;

That grandma and her shitbox Ford.

I zipped unscathed through traffic lights;

The highway pavement in my sights.

I scaled the on-ramp, feeling super;

Three hundred horses ‘neath my pooper.

Two miles elapsed without a hitch;

That’s when I first espied the bitch.

Inching, as if her car were moored —

Li’l grandma in her shitbox Ford.

She occupied the left-most lane;

Clogged traffic like a hair-caked drain.

From ninety, I slowed down to ten,

Then checked my speed and braked again.

I stared a hole through her bumper,

Spewing filth like “wrinkle-humper”

And other names most untoward

At grandma and her shitbox Ford.

Nine miles later, my exit loomed.

In the ‘slow’ lane, traffic zoomed.

I saw a chance to make my swerve,

As Granny puttered ’round a curve.

With blinker on, I eyed the ramp —

My back asweat; my forehead damp.

Then, cut off by a rogue Accord;

Curse grandma and her shitbox Ford!

I swerved back with a desp’rate twist,

By now my exit sorely missed;

And miles until a roundabout,

Where I might sort re-routing out.

And still the biddy blocked my path,

Inciting hate; incurring wrath.

Ten minutes more of Hell endured,

‘Hind grandma and her shitbox Ford.

I finally took my chance to bolt

(Careening past a Chevy Volt)

And sped past Granny, still irate

And fuming, forty minutes late.

I honked to voice my raw displeasure;

Her response was a special treasure.

I was quite rudely gestured toward;

By grandma from her shitbox Ford.

She crept away; I gawked, amazed —

Her dander up and finger raised.

I don’t know where she found the verve,

But that old biddy had some nerve.

Escaping, I had half a mind

To return her “salute” in kind.

Instead, I found my hope restored,

And of the Heavens I implored:

“Please keep her safe, O Highway Lord;

Tho’ Granny’s whacked out of her gourd —

And traffic laws are well ignored

By grandma in her shitbox Ford.

But as this game of life is scored,

Persnickety’s its own reward.

With luck, I’ll strike MY final chord

Like grandma.

In a shitbox Ford.

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