Peter Austin


This One, Too

(This actually happened. “Newfie”
is short for Newfoundlander.)

Seamus O’Shea, in Cornerbrook
Was driving round the town
At twelve o’clock, one Sunday night,
When guess who flagged him down?

The cop said, in a Newfie lilt,
“So, where’s your license plate?
I’ll have you show your papers, please.”
Succumbing to his fate,

Said Seamus, “Well, to tell the truth,
I don’t possess ’em, Sarge.”
“It’s Constable, I’d have you mind,
And you are under charge

Of … just hold on!” His eye had caught
The sight of one bald tire:
“This wreck ain’t worthy of the road:
It just might catch on fire!

“Out, if you please: you’ll have to walk,
Coz this auld heap’s impounded,
Soon as the ticket’s written out!”
And mighty mad, he sounded.

Later an hour, the selfsame cop
While still on traffic duty
Saw an entirely different car—
And even less a beauty—

Running a red. He caught it up
And flashed for it to stop.
“Have you a brother?” Seamus said
While squinting at the cop.

“Get out, my friend!” the other said,
And more than mad, he sounded:
“I’d phone the Guinness record folk,
Coz this one, too, ’s impounded!”

Peter Austin‘s poems have appeared in Blue Unicorn, Barefoot Muse, The Raintown Review, Fourteen by Fourteen, The New Formalist, Able Muse, and The Philadelphia Review, as well as in journals/magazines in Canada, the USA, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Israel. He is a retired professor of English living in Toronto, Canada.