Three Riddles

                         A Riddle of the Bottle

I'll riddle you a riddle, my Barroom Belle:
how come drinking's just like Heaven and Hell?
From the day you're born, it seems like you're licked.
As time goes on, you’re just beaten and kicked.
So why keep it up? It all seems so dumb;
that you need a drink just to get numb.
And maybe you’re still feeling small and alone
but you know another'll make you strong
and then another for some confidence.
Finally everything starts to make sense:
nothing will touch you, you can fly through the air
and maybe you'll crash but you sure don't care.
Here you are now where everything's right
so you go on drinking the rest of the night.
At last you're alive but the room starts to spin
and the next thing you know you're passed out again.
Then you wake up the next day feeling like death
with grit in your lungs and rot on your breath
and your liver gets shot and I guess somehow
that what's kept me alive is killing me now.

Here is your answer, my bibulous duffer:
when things come easy, we think we should suffer.
Unworthy of heaven that's free for the taking
we resort to a hell that's of our own making.
Your hangover's a cure, it let's you measure
a pain to match your every pleasure.
So with alcohol we are blessed and cursed
to provoke and to slake our guilt's own thirst.
And we look for escape, but we always find
our own face at the bottom of a bottle of wine.
So the riddle you asked, I'll stand on its head:
your hidden desire is what you most dread.

                         A Riddle of the Dollar

I'll riddle a you riddle, my Lady in Tatters,
what I can't understand about money matters.
I've worked real hard every day of my life.
I followed the rules, didn't cause any strife.
I washed myself in my nooks and crannies
just like I was taught by my old granny.
So how did I end up poor and alone,
just smokes and a bottle and skin and bones?
First of the month I pay my rent.
Three weeks later my check's all spent.
You'd think if you always did what you're told
you'd be better off when you got old.

I'll answer your riddle, my servile man,
you gawky old ostrich, head in the sand.
They make up the rules, the powers that be,
to keep down the likes of you and me.
If you never made waves, what did you expect?
When have the rich ever shown us respect?
They've sold you their lies for what you crave:
a tarnished penny for the mind of a slave.
So the riddle you asked, I'll stand on its head:
your hidden desire is what you most dread.

A Riddle of the Sexes

My Lady of Midnight, answer if you can
this riddle I've got about the woman and man.
A guy takes a girl out; treats her real nice;
he wants some loving but she's cold as ice.
Then some jerk comes along who treats her like dirt
and she gives him her heart and her body and shirt.
Women act so pure, so high and mighty,
but a lowdown bum makes them all flighty.

The riddle you ask, my musky old mouse,
goes all the way back to Adam and spouse.
For Eve realized soon after the Fall,
that she got the blame when she stood up tall.
So she learned to attack
while she lay on her back,
and to put on her power
when she took off her clothes.
The man who's kneeling at your feet
is powerless to conquer or to concede;
and the upright man who's so complete
won't lie down for what he needs;
but outlaw desire, past right or wrong,
fuels the fire which keeps us strong.
And it's weakness you use to captivate
those women you secretly love to hate.
So the riddle you asked, I'll stand on its head:
your hidden desire is what you most dread.

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