Monday, October 31, 2005

"Dr. Frankenstein's Lament"

Where is my little Fritz now?
A surgeon needs another hand to wipe his brow
He was here not long ago
To fetch the whip I keep on show
Oh, where is my little Fritz now?

He's my best friend in darkest night and pouring rains
He cuts down bodies and retrieves abnormal brains
I miss the slumpy way he walks
I miss the way he tugs his socks
Oh, where is my little Fritz now?

He comes in handy when it's time to sweep the porch
His match is always ready for my torch
Yes, he has his faults, it's true
But deprived, I feel so blue!
Oh, where is my little Fritz now?

To be without you feels so odd!
Without you - I'm just a sentimental clod
Who knows just - what it feels like to be God!
I'm talking to myself! It's just the pits
I guess there is no life...
Mit-out mein kleine Fritz.

I think I heard a sudden sound from down below!
Could that be my little Fritzie screaming "No!"?
I may just sit right down and cry
The Monster's hung him up to dry...

Oh, where is my little Fritz now?

The above is one of about fifteen poems or songs I wrote for Monster Rally, an unpublished collection of "classic monster" verse that Charlie Largent and I were developing together a couple of years ago. The verse was mine, and the illustrations were to be Charlie's. He did some marvelous preliminary sketches but, as I recall, we both got side-tracked by paying work... and we had also been a little disillusioned by the way nothing much happened with our previous attempt at a children's book, Where Did My E-Mail Go?. My former agent wasn't interested in handling children's books, I suppose my publisher wasn't interested in confusing readers who thought of me as a writer of dark adult fiction, and the manuscript and full color art samples we sent out had a curious tendency to get misplaced and forgotten. Sometimes you have a perfectly fine project but it's not the right time for it, so you move on, hoping that the right time will come eventually.

Monster Rally isn't really a children's book so much as a collection of sophisticated light verse for classic horror aficionados. It's fun, it's smart; I think it's good. Perhaps we'll publish it ourselves someday. Or perhaps someone out there knows of a proper home for it. Whatever its ultimate fate, I thought I would share "Dr. Frankenstein's Lament" with all of you as a little Halloween treat. (On second thought, maybe I should have held back this particular example till Valentine's Day!) Anyway, you deserve it -- if only for good attendance. In the hour before I posted this, Video WatchBlog counted its 13,000th visitor and its 20,000th page visit! And we're just starting our fourth week.

Donna joins me, and the rest of the VW Kennel, in wishing all of you a very Happy (and Safe) Halloween!

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