A Ballad for Beards

One day I’m walking to the bus
(a bright and sunny day),
and right there on the concrete walk
a beard jumped in my way.
“You’re trespassing upon my land,”
he said, “you’ll surely pay.”

“Good sir,” said I with great surprise,
“Please keep your mercy near.”
I was but on my way to work.
I walked and now am here.
Please let us reason for a while,
I’m sure we’ll make this clear.”

He listened to me carefully.
(No feet, yet there he stands.)
Then lost in thought, he stroked himself.
(How strange, he has no hands.)
He cleared his throat of phlegm and said,
“These are my strict demands:

“You’ll sing to me a song of beards
or come into disgrace.
You’ll sing of me so prettily,
or come to rue this place.
You’ll glory in this beautiful beard,
or I will shave your face.”

And so sang I,

“What is it that makes beards so great?
I surely like this plan.
Courageous, active, earnest, grown,
and of a noble clan-
of such a one Augustine said,
‘he is a bearded man.’

“The Psalmist spoke of friends who love
like oil on a beard.
Beloved poet Edward Lear,
of nests in beards he feared.
Or what about that Spurgeon guy,
a preacher most revered?

“What is it that makes beards so great?
I’ll surely tell you why.
They’re noble like the lion’s mane;
they make me want to cry.
They’re useful since they hold one’s food,
especially when they’re dry.

“They’re helpful to express one’s grief:
they’re there for one to tear.
The beard that’s healthy, oiled well,
will cause one’s foes despair.
The beard marks men who, patient, wise,
are those not prone to err.

“What is it that makes beards so great?
Now surely you must know.
They’re manly, lovely, useful, and
deep mysteries they show:
The beard is but an image of man,
the beard and man both grow.

“Dear Sir, I’ve sung to thee a song
I leave to thee my fate.
And though I’ve sung my best, I know
that hater’s gonna hate.
I’ve sung your song, O Bearded one,
in patience I will wait.”

The beard, he paused, then said to me,
“Today I’m full of grace.
But nevermore step on my land,
and get you from this place.
I never want to see again
your ugly, bearded face”.


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