A Rose Among The Woodwoses
John Gregory Presco
Lady Mary Wilson Webb, inherited the job of keeping the fire lit below deck. All those who had gone before her, had failed. The fire tendered in a square iron tray, held together with rivets, then filled with sand, had become the altar of the Pilgrims. It, and the black pot hung on a trident, was watched most of the day by the lost souls packed under the creaking and leaking timbers. Moving about was almost impossible. Everyone was frozen in their place. But for the brave excursions above, met by some tempest, and cold sea spray, the wayfarers relieved themselves in a vile oaken bucket that was too close for comfort. Bible’s were taken out from under pillows when a lady went to tithe the Oaken Monster as they called it. Reading verses aloud, was the polite thing to do.
Tiring of the gory and bloody Biblical tales, that increased the Cargo Dread, the men brought out their bawdy jokes that they had memorized and gathered since their school days. The women pretended they ne’er heard a one. But, that guarded secret was soon out. And, a new kind of boredom set in. It was dreadful. Ones farting was amplified in the silence. The women ran out of perfume. Everyone got to know what a women really smelled like, including the women! Everyone was grateful for the occasional flying fish that was thrown in the pot, to cook all day, like temple incense.
The men ran out of jokes. Nothing was ever going to be funny again. The art of Mary keeping the fire alive was the highlight of their existence. You could hear the beards growing. In the glow of the red coals, the women felt like roses among the Woodwoses.
Two weeks at sea and another three weeks to go. Something had to be done.
“I brought my father’s book on rhetoric with me. Does anyone know it? My kindred William Shakespeare read it and was quite impressed. I saw him perform at the Rose theatre, on several occasions. He and my father were friends. They used to go the Bearbait Theatre and sit among the Protestant Spies. There were lawyers of the Temple present. Thomas called them the Roman Senators. There were horrific scenes of animal torture going on in the round arena. It was like the Roman Coliseum. I know enough about rhetoric where I can teach you. It will make the time fly.”
“For God’s sake, Mary. Why have you withheld this book from us!”
“My father was taken prisoner by the Inquisition, put in prison, and tortured. His books were ruled heretical, I don’t want to instigate spurious opinions about me and my father, for, I have nowhere to go to get away from you if you start in on that!”
“In Jesus’ name, relieve of us of our excruciating tedium! We are dying here Mary! Don’t be cruel!”
“My tutor taught my brother and I rhetoric from your father’s book. We can have a rhetorical argument about having Mary produce it for our salvation from our mind-numbing malaise!”
“Good idea! But, it is fair we all receive a sample. Is it not?”
“Would you care to elaborate?”
On March 31, 2019 I found Thomas Wilson’s book ‘The Art of Rhetorike’. There are several spellings. After reading forty, pages I believe my theory that Thomas Wilson had a hand in writing some of William Shakespeare’s’ plays, if not all, is sound.
On this day, I copyright my idea that I arrived at with my battle I am having with Meg Whitman, and the alleged owners of the California Barrel Company, over ownership of this company name that once made barrels. I spoke with an attorney. I am critical of Quibi. To discover Apple TV is being backed by Steven Spielberg, and a bevy of Hollywood talent, is ironic, for Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor and Richard Burton are in my Rosamond Family Tree, as is, Sir Thomas Wilson. I do not want Shakespeare to fall into either capitalist camps, because William made Acting more than an Art Form, as I will show in my novel. Then there is the question……..
Who owns America – and why?
I will give my reader a good example of how Rhetoric fits well with Shakespeare’s’ work. Peter G. Platt has written one of the finest essays I have read. I am envious.
Then, there is this illustration. It took my breath away. Do you know who he is, the man leading noble women with chains linked to the tip of his tongue. He is my hero.
What really got my interest is this line……….
“And God save the Queen’s majesty.”
Where were Britain’s great Rhetorical Men when the Brexit issue came up?