Thursday, May 29, 2008

Uncle Zeke Says His A, B, C’s

by David Parmer

In his May 27, 1926 column of the Buzzardtown News published in the Braxton Democrat, Uncle Zeke recited his A, B, C’s for his readership with his usual wit, humor, and rhyme.
A is for Andrew Posey, a very good man,
B is for Bill Beckner, who looks like a clam;
C is for Carrie Fox, good to work and to labor,
D is for Den. Riffle, a mighty good neighbor;
E is for Emmett Atkinson, as slow as a snail,
F is for Floyd Posey, who ought to be in jail;
G is for George Riffle, who weighs twenty pounds,
H is for Hob Henline, with his measly old hounds;
I is for Ivan Morrison, who does all he can,
J is for Jack Sam, the groundhog man;
K is for Kathleen Fox, as bright as a dime,
L is for Lucy Posey, who talks all the time;
M is for Minerva Riffle, who works every day.
N is for Nellie Posey, with nothing to say;
O is for Oris Stutler, who goes from here to there,
P is for Polar Henline, who looks like a bear.
Q is for Queen, who tries to run the town.
R is for Ray Fox, a man of renown;
S is for Sanford Posey, who tells his big jokes.
T is for Tank Henline, who laughs while he smokes;
U is for Uncle Zeke, with his head in a whirl,
V is for Virginia Stutler, a cute little girl;
W is for Who, and who is for what,
X is for ten spots, which I haven’t got;
Z is for Zack Scarff, who loves to fox chase.
Although there were a few people around Buzzardtown and Orlando who did not like to see their names in print in the Buzzardtown News column, most people were sincerely flattered to see their names in print, especially when their names were put to rhyme. Undoubtedly, Uncle Zeke’s A, B, C’s poem was cut from the Braxton Democrat by many of the readers and preserved in a dresser drawer or the family Bible. Bob Pumphrey, now of Texas, earlier shared with the readership of the Orlando website, a poem which had been written by Uncle Zeke about the Kaiser of Germany during World War I, and given to Bob’s father, Bill Pumphrey, the Goosepen blacksmith. The Pumphrey family has saved this simple Uncle Zeke poem since it was written over ninety years ago.

To the right, top to bottom, are some of the citizens mentioned in this alphabetical inventory of Buzzardtown: Andrew Newton Posey, Idena "Den" (Skinner) Riffle, Floyd "Flukey" Posey, Ray Fox , Verdis C. "Polar" Henline, and Lloyd "Tank" Henline.

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