SUBJECT, VERB, OBJECT by Gaston
Thematic entries are from Cautionary Tales by HILAIRE BELLOC in which HENRY KING chewed STRING, MATILDA told LIES, REBECCA slammed DOORS, ALGERNON fired GUN and GEORGE burst BALLOON.
(A SETTER’S BLOG) after Hilaire Belloc
Now Gaston thought that this EV
Would be the last of his he’d see.
It seemed the Sunday Telegraph
Had sadly penned this epitaph:
‘This puzzle’s gone into decline
Because it will not work on-line.
Rubbers, pens or coloured pencils?
Not computer-age utensils!
Extensive research has now shown
That we do puzzles on the phone.
Why pander to a tiny clique
Whose entries dwindle week by week?
The EV’s there for old buffoons
To fill their Sunday afternoons.
(Instead of watching trash on telly
That turns their liquid brains to jelly).’
But when we thought the die was cast
And heard the puzzle’d breathed its last,
EV’s string on Crossword Forum
Showed the numbers that adored ’em.
‘It’s not about the prize’ they plead.
‘We’ve all got pens – more than we need!
EV’s a challenge that we treasure;
And better still it gives us pleasure.
Some weeks we crack it, some we don’t;
Sometimes the penny drops – or won’t.
It doesn’t matter. Not one bit.
All we want’s the chance to pit
Our brain against the unknown foe,
(With Chambers, Mrs B in tow).’
Emails pinged and letters posted;
Setters and their solvers roasted
By those who’d torn their world apart.
They begged them for a change of heart.
All seemed fruitless; EVs were dead –
‘They’re just too difficult’ they said.
The death knell tolled; last straws were clutched –
Then somewhere someone’s nerve was touched!
And much to everyone’s surprise
The ST made a compromise!
The EV would survive in print!
A victory? Yes, but there’s a hint
That once the ST goes on-line
Unless some techie can design
An EV in some modern style,
It would be curtains – but meanwhile
The EV lives! Or should I say
It lives to fight another day…….
It was too tempting not to write a blog in the Hilaire Belloc style. I hope you enjoyed both the puzzle and the poem.
A full review of this puzzle can be seen over on fifteensquared.