Thursday, April 12, 2012

Roadside poetry


I took a bus trip from central Cape Cod to Providence, Rhode Island today and I saw no billboards. Only appropriate road signs and then signs on buildings as we entered towns. -- Lots of signs on building in Falll River where it seems all the old factories have become outlet stores. -- I DO remember being young and passing not only many billboards for all kinds of things but the Burma Shave signs that were always fun -- they have now passed into something like folk literature. They were poetry, of a sort:

DINAH DOESN'T
TREAT HIM RIGHT
BUT IF
HE'D SHAVE
DINAH-MITE!
Burma-Shave

BEFORE I TRIED IT
THE KISSES
I MISSED
BUT AFTERWARD-BOY!
THE MISSES I KISSED
Burma-Shave


THE QUEEN
OF HEARTS
NOW LOVES THE KNAVE
THE KING
RAN OUT OF
BURMA SHAVE

NO LADY LIKES
TO DANCE
OR DINE
ACCOMPANIED
BY A PORCUPINE
Burma Shave

IS HE LONESOME
OR JUST BLIND
THAT GUY
WHO DRIVE
SO CLOSE BEHIND
Burma Shave?

Does anyone remember them? Am I THAT old? I really enjoyed them -- but then I had the sensibility of a ten year old.

3 comments:

Bev Sykes said...

Of course I remember the Burma Shave signs. I used to love them! Hard to believe they've been gone since 1963 (if Wikipedia is to be believed)

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

I remember them well -- posted along country roads up against farm fields. After I read your post I tried to remember how many years had passed since I had seen any of the signs. I think I was a young adult when I noticed they were decreasing as were farm stands. Perhaps a sign of the slow demise of the independent farmer. I wonder if the Burma Shave product is still around.

MaryContrary said...

I do remember the Burma Shave signs. We passed them every year when we drove to visit my dad's folks. That was from the late 1950s to the mid 1960s.