Lighten Up Online

The quarterly light verse webzine

Stephen Gold -- One Giant Leap Too Far

“You are old, Neil Armstrong, as all of us know,
And you’re famed for a great lunar task.
I’m so thrilled you’re appearing tonight on my show—
There’s a question I’m dying to ask.

From that glorious day you set foot on the moon,
I will quote you, I hope you don’t mind.
‘Twas ‘one small step for man,’ as you told us that noon,
But ‘one giant leap’ too, for mankind.

Down the years, I’ve remembered again and again,
And this question has stayed in my head:
Had you chosen to say something different, well then,
What on earth do you think you’d have said?”

“That’s an excellent question,” the astronaut smiled.
Then he thoughtfully knitted his brow.
“I’d have said, thinking back to when I was a child,
Mrs Rubinstein - go for it now!”

“What a curious answer,” the questioner said,
“I just cannot imagine its source.
Won’t you tell us what made it come into your head--
Did you feel a galactical force?”

“In my youth,” said our hero, “conditions were poor;
Our apartment had terrible flaws.
Our dear neighbours, the Rubinsteins, they were next door,
And the walls, they were thinner than gauze.

Late one night, I was reading alone in my bed,
When I heard a tremendous furore.
I could hear, loud and clear, every word that was said,
Which is why I can tell you this story.

You could tell Mrs Rubinstein wasn’t best pleased;
Seems her husband had made a suggestion,
To which she’d responded, ‘Your head is diseased!’
And compliance was out of the question.

“What was his proposal? Oh do let us know,
For you have us completely agog.
Are you going as fast as a spaceman can go?
Do not leave us too long in the fog!”

“Be patient, I beg you, we’re nearing the close,
And I’m going to tell you, my friend.
Hold on to your horses, and stay on your toes,
For we’re rapidly reaching the end.

Mrs Rubinstein yelled - I remember so clear -
'There’ll be none of that any time soon!
I will give you a blow job, Emanuel my dear--
When the kid next door walks on the moon!'"

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