Verse – Tour Guides

Verse — Tour Guides in 1962
at the Mansion of the late
Col. Robert R. McCormick,
former Editor/Publisher
of the Chicago Tribune

We said “Cantigny” like “Cubs-Wrigley.”
“Can-TIG-knee,” after all, was west of
Chicago, and we Midwestern guys
from Wheaton College were the best of
hires, for boss, Mrs. J, knew we would
not steal Colonel McCormick’s books or
swords, silver, furniture or liquor,
since we were honest Christian boys.

She was from Europe, Austria, and
knew France would shudder if the town would
hear how we mispronounced “CAHN-tee-neigh.”
The Colonel fought a battle there, or
so we were told originally by
wise Mrs. J. But foolishly, she
let us pass all the information
on to the other guides, and as we
played “telephone” the tales would then grow
until our Colonel was the hero…

(“And after Fox Hunts, he was always pleased
to set buns on the porch and cut the cheese.”)

– Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL, July 1, 2015

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