Our Maven of Miscellanea, Ron Lies “Chips” of Denver, who sends us wonderful tid-bits he finds in his Watsonian and Sherlockian peregrinations, suggested we offer the Ode written by Sandy Kozinn “Roxie”. Ron writes:
“Buttons, I read this and thought it would be a good piece to put in our blog. I wish you and yours all the best for a blessed and wonderful Christmas and all things great for next year. Please extend all my hopes and wishes for the holiday season to all the members of our Society.”
“There are always new Sherlockians. Some of them may actually have never seen this, a toast I presented to a Blue Carbuncle Dinner meeting of The Three Garridebs some years ago. It’s another take on that old question: What was that stone, anyhow?”
ODE ON THE O.E.D. ON THE CARBUNCLE, or What Was it, Anyhow?
Each year we meet to greet and dine,
Perhaps to sip a glass of wine
In honor of the carbuncle blue.
A carbuncle blue? It can’t be true!
As I glanced through the O.E.D.
Three definitions popped out at me.
A carbuncle stone, it clearly said,
Was a precious stone of a fiery red.
A carbuncle could be a red facial spot,
An infection or a tumor, but both red hot.
There’s one thing more that it could be:
A small lump of coal, quite black to see.
Such coal in a goose would be quite shocking.
(It really belongs in Moriarty’s stocking.)
But if Mycroft Holmes had sired a child
(And I admit that idea is wild)
And if Sherlock were sad on the day that he sat
For Oscar Meunier — did you get all that? —
And Oscar worked in coal, then that statue or trunk’ll
Turn out to have been a blue carb uncle.
But a statue in black, the size of a bean
In the crop of a goose might never be seen.
So what was the stone? what color? what kind?
There’s only one answer I’m able to find.
Since Watson wrote “scintillatingly brilliant blue”
Then what must have happened — I leave it to you —
Was: He made a mistake! There’s a very good reason,
For Watson, like us, was toasting the season.