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The Florin by Denny Lancaster

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The Florin by Denny Lancaster

Postby D'Poet » Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:26 pm

The Florin
by Denny Lancaster

'twas a man in Teelin many years ago,
a church man who to Sunday mass did go,
at the end or service, when the poor box,
was passed around, but only a florin, he found.

d'goodman placed the florin in the plate,
"kerplunk" was the forlorn and thankful sound,
off to purchase his dinner, he was now bound.

The butcher rang up his bill, but no money had he,
and then a stranger saw his plite, "may I help thee?"
A florin was thrust into his hand, the stranger left,
and the butcher gave him the meal and change.

A week later, Sunday mass was just about to begin,
he reached into his pocket and what should he find,
but change from the week before, and a shiny florin.

Such is the gift of good cheering and godly men,
for some things we have will always be returned more,
than the meger treasure of our earth, that we can store.

Background An old friend asked that I write a book review for Irish OnLine several years ago on Folktales of Ireland, edited by Sean O'Sullivan; The University of Chicago Press; 1998

I was pleased to write the review, enjoyed the book and then a second request which proved to be a challenge: To write a poem about the folktale which I liked the most. As you already know, short stories can not be condensed into a poem with ease and I wrestled with what to do with what, until at mass a week later came an answer which led me to reread Fairy Money

Thank you father Murphy for being an inspiration not only for how to write the poem (with your dry Irish wit) but for being a friend in need.

Denny Lancaster
Copyright May 13, 2002

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