Monday, February 4, 2008

Wiggly Tooth - A joke in Elizabethan.

I am working with a New Zealand playwright/independent film producer on a script. He has written it, I am translating it into Elizabethan Stage Language.

This joke was cut out of the script, but he liked it and thought it should be read. It is a bit of a bar joke, with some 'blue' images, so please, if such offends, do not read... but you probably shouldn't read A Midsummer Night's Dream, or Falstaff's lines, either.

Amended 01/14/08 © 2008 by Guy Hamling & G.Robin Smith. 2GeNtZ in partnership.

From "Verona". Scene: a bar. Friends night out.

Campbell tells a joke:

Attend... Into a tavern goes a knight.
Upon the bar there sits a bowl, in which
a treasure of the King’s best coin resides.
The knight does seem amazed “’zounds! What is this?”

The Tavern Man explains “A challenge, sir,
rewarded with the contents here, if all
a man can do is match the tasks I bear.”
“Why I’m a man who rises to the call,

No matter what the risk. But name to me
the gauntlet I must run, then watch and learn.”
The Keeper speaks. “Do spy that squire, he
where wall and wall do meet?” The knight then turns

and looks upon a living wall, an oaf
so broad and strong that, if he were a smith,
could up-end horses for to shod their hoof.
“He is a soldier from the Northern mists,

his blood from Viking Kings. But drop him with
a single blow and you the deed have won.”
The knight then pulls a sip of ale, then quips…
“’tis all?” The Innkeep grunts a belch like tone,

continues “Nay [whispers] ‘the gall’. Speaks “Lower down
in ancient pit a mastiff hound awaits
He’s killed a brace of bears at hunt, but non,
his fest’ring tooth abates. But pull from him

his rotting fang and champ’n - nigh – be told.”
“That’s all then, for this prize of coin? “Not quite”
the keeper spake. That strumpet, there, as old
as lies, in trade for thirty years and five?

Not once has she true pleasure known. Do loin
that task and treasure - own.” “The deed’s agreed!”
the knight declares, then tosses in his coin.
He calls for drinks of spirits rare, and speed

two tankards Beer. “The Queen!” says he, and gulps
the sack, then to the Squire takes the Beer.
“Here, Hold these, pray” and so he does, then jolts
[Campbell punches a powerful uppercut]—
he might’ly, knocking fist to jaw, the squire,

falls dropping, sopping, flopping to the floor.
Returning to the gape-mouthed Keep, two drams
more down of sack. Then strides to dungeon door
with all eyes on his noble back, he grabs

the latch, and CREEEAAK ensues, the gate, then c l o s e d
[make creaking sound again].
A moment held of silence-still… then Hell’s
own voice did roar! Sound shook the beams with growls
of pain from snarling Cerberus. The howls

and rage, the wails and barks. Such cries, and calls
and grunts! There were no noises from the crowd,
all conversations stopped. No sip of ale,
no talk, no tale, broke silence thick as shroud.

Then foot on step slow sounded he, that Knight
of iron-heart. Then door did CREEEAAAK and born
through crept a horror rent and stark. Once bright
his armor now a-scratched, his clothing torn,

his face a bloody mar but stood he bold,
tho’ almost dead, and limped he to the bar.
“I’ve dared and done two deeds of three, in truth.
Now point me, last, this whore with rotted tooth."

copyright (c) 2008 by Guy Hamling & G.Robin Smith
All rights reserved. Don't try and use this as your own. We know people.

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