Two poems, two polls

You might remember the Monster A Day drawing blog that prompted my short verse about a whispering shell. Here are two more whimsical rhymes, best read in tandem with the lovely illustrations.

‘The monster that waits in the cupboard of an abandoned house’:

In a comfy cupboard on the quietest floor
Of an empty house with the creakiest door
Sits a great big thing with its furry face stuck
In the cosy excitement of a paperback book.

‘The monster that steals your socks… for sock races!’

You’re probably wondering what happens your sock
When it darts with a blur past the grandfather clock.
I’ll tell you: your foot’s not the favourite place
Of a sock that just wants to be sock-monster-raced!


On an unrelated note, I’m honoured to be included in Lexiophiles’ top language professional blogs and top language Twitter accounts 2012. Many thanks to the kind reader(s) who nominated me.

You can browse the lists for languagey goodness, and you can vote for me at Sentence first and @StanCarey, or for whatever takes your fancy.

Update: The results are in, and this blog and my Twitter page both placed respectably: #21 in the language blogs, #14 in the language Twitterers. Considering I mentioned it only in passing, and tweeted about it just once, I’m quite amazed. Thanks to all who voted, and to and Lexiophiles for the fun and games.


5 Responses to Two poems, two polls

  1. Shaun Downey says:

    Cheery little poems Stan! As for the monster that steals my socks, I’m surprised it hasn’t become so obese it waddles rather than darts!

    Good luck in the polls

  2. alexmccrae1546 says:


    CharnelSteps illustrations ARE truly “lovely’, in both their delicacy of execution, and the light-hearted sense of whimsy that they invoke. (This is coming from a fellow pro cartoonist, so I’m not just blowin’ idle smoke.)

    Her humongous monster-in-the-cupboard is a most delightful creature. (Hardly scary, though. HA!) I like the sense of scale ‘Charnel’ creates w/ those two dinky little empty coat-hangers, and the tiny book-in-hand.

    The poem, itself, ain’t too shabby either.

    One can’t help but conjure up fond memories of the fanciful creature creations of the recently departed, masterful kids’ book* illustrator, Maurice Sendak. I can see a bit of Sendak’s touch in Charnel’s lovable, closeted, horned oaf. Those ‘wild things’ even find cupboards and closets very accommodating, it appears.

    Stan, congrats on your dual recognition for both blogging and Twitter excellence in the language discourse vein. Bon chance!

    Geez, would we expects anything less. Keep up the fine work.

    *Curiously, in a “60 Minutes” TV interview from a number of years back, Sendak claimed he didn’t really view himself as a children’s book illustrator, and in fact, didn’t care that much for kids, per se. He said he basically wrote for his own kind of therapeutic enjoyment, driven by haunting memories of a rather oppressive, loveless, and lonely childhood. So he was quite content that anyone might find his books engaging—–adults, kids, whomever. it was more or less his publisher that labelled him a kids book illustrator/ writer…. the appellation stuck… and the rest is history.

  3. Stan says:

    Shaun: Thank you, sir. The monster who steals my socks normally returns them, but not before he has run a big hole through the bottom – presumably from racing them on rough carpets.

    Alex: You’re a pro cartoonist? I had no idea. Sounds like a great job. I’ll pass on your high praise to the artist, who I believe is a big fan of Sendak’s work. I like the sense of scale in her drawings too, and the humorous imagination.
    And thanks for the kind words, Alex. I thought twice about mentioning the poll here at all, but talked myself into it.

  4. Marc Leavitt says:

    Congratulations! I use exclamation points sparingly.

  5. Stan says:

    Thanks, Marc – it’s an honour indeed to receive one of your rare exclamation marks. (You’ve probably read Thurber on the subject.)

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