Thursday, September 29, 2005

For Better or for Verse
A Guest Post by Robert N. Going

[Robert N. Going of The Judge Report posted the following in the comments section of an earlier post. I assume no liability for damage to your computer screen from coffee or any other beverage which this may cause you to spew. — Dawn]

Once I rendered a court decision as a three page limerick, then thought better of it (Thou Shalt Not Get Too Cute) and converted it to much less-interesting prose.

From the archives of Family Court, Montgomery County, N.Y. (the Judge sitting as Acting Supreme Court Justice):

?Bob and Carolyn split. It was fate.
They divorced back around ‘98.
Their marriage a shambles,
They set out on new rambles,
To frolic, perhaps to re-mate.

The lawyer his file did close.
“Nothing left of this case, I suppose.
“All issues resolved.
“No problems to solve.
“It’s as dead as a case ever goes.”

Two years later, and now Bob is back
He has a new cause to attack
“The vows must be said,
“A new wife I must wed.
“And it seems a divorce I do lack.”

“But divorce you we did, I recall,
“We submitted the papers one Fall.
“The Judge took his time,
“But the papers did sign.
“You’re divorced! You’re divorced! That is all!”

“While from Carolyn I’m free from strife,
“It seems there was more to my life.
“I meant not to fool ya’,
“But there’s also a Julia
“With some claims of being my wife.”

She had troubles, it seems, of a sort,
And Bob, wishing to be a good sport,
Took a walk down the aisle,
Later left, single file,
Without an assist from a court.

So later, when Carolyn came,
He wished not to mention his shame.
So to Carolyn wed,
And with Julia not dead,
He was playing a dangerous game.

“So let’s get this straight,” lawyer said.
“With Julia undivorced and not dead,
“You then took the course
“Of seeking divorce
“From a woman to whom you’re not wed?”

“I guess you could say that is true.
“But tell me just what could I do?
“I couldn’t just tell her
“What kind of a feller
“She married. Now tell me, could you?”

So Bob must divorce number one,
With number two already done,
Was there any redress
For this whole freakin’ mess?
His problems had only begun.

So the file so carefully closed
Was summoned from its sweet repose
What could Lawyer do
With this sticky old goo?
“An annulment, I guess, I suppose.”

Since Carolyn didn’t yet know
That her wedding was only for show,
She hadn’t quite weighed
The Default she had made
With the true facts. She might seek more dough.

And Julia, with no thought of makeup
With Bob, might just start to wake up
To her property rights,
And might set her sights
On what Carolyn got in the breakup.

The Court, though amused, took its time,
And replied in Decision sublime,
“There’s nothing I’ll do
“Till the whole bloody crew
“Is before me!” (in Limerick rhyme).