Listen my readers and you shall hear

Of the mixed-up ride of Paul Revere.

In the dead of night, he headed off, skittish,

And accidentally warned the British —

That American rebels were drawing near.

Listen my readers and you shall hear
Of the mixed-up ride of Paul Revere.
In the dead of night, he headed off, skittish,
And accidentally warned the British —
That American rebels were drawing near.

I said to my friend, “Did I hear that right?”
’Cause I could have sworn his midnight ride
And the church tower lantern as signal light
Were intended to warn the folks on our side:
“One if by land, and two if by sea,”
And, well, you could have won money off me:
I’d have bet that ride and the famous alarm,
From Charleston Bay to Middlesex farm,
Were intended to do the British harm.

But, no, it seems my history’s failin’,
Says bus-touring author Sarah Palin.
On the eighteenth of April, in seventy-five,
As sure as Newt Gingrich’s campaign’s alive,
Ol’ Paul and his steed rode far and near
To warn of rights-seeking colonists here.
“I didn’t mess up about Paul Revere,”
Ms. Palin insisted, defending her views,
In a friendly exchange with the guy on Fox News.

“He did warn the British,” said Sarah, indeed,
“That, hey, you’re not going to succeed.”
“You are not going to beat our own well-armed persons.”
(These are real Palin quotes, which is why meter worsens.)
“You’re not going to take American arms,”
Said Paul (says Sarah) from town squares and farms.
He had his issue and he wasn’t quittin’:
Revere, with the Second Amendment, was smitten
Some four years before it had even been written.

Historians, needless to say, scratch their heads
When trying to make sense of what Sarah said.
Did the media set out to trap her? You bet’cha!
It’s always the same with reporters; they get’cha!
They’re just out to lambaste and libel and label,
From edit board hacks to the eggheads on cable.
(They even write satiric doggerel, if able.)
Blame it all on the liberal media,
And the left-leaning loons who rewrite Wikipedia.

I’d thought my knowledge of history healthy.
I could have sworn Paul Revere rode for our side,
And that his excursion was wily and stealthy.
But “ringing those bells” is now part of that ride?
And “send(ing) those warning shots”? He did that too?
And non-Fox News fans pay attention to you?
Progress sets sail upon history’s mast,
So we saved our best Palin quotation for last:
“How important it is that we learn about our past.”

Messenger managing editor Kevin Frisch’s column, Funny Thing ..., appears each Sunday in the Canandaigua Daily Messenger. Contact him at (585) 394-0770, ext. 257, or via e-mail at kfrisch@messengerpostmedia.com.