Sepia Saturday - Purple Cow Day

Today we celebrate the purple cow
I bet you didn't know that
it is a bit random anyhow
since I just declared it

(CrazyasaCoolFox's attempt at poetry)


This image is a single page scan from my own c...Image via Wikipedia


For some reason the poem "Purple Cow" came back to me today. I remember my father would say this poem to us kids sometimes to wake us up, sometimes at bedtime. I always laughed so much when I heard it.


So I did a little research on this silly subject. After all this blog is about crazy and cool things. I found this cool "sepiaized" original print from the publication, "The Lark." "Purple Cow" was written in "The Lark," by Gelett Burgess. "The Lark was produced by Burgess himself.


I never saw a purple cow.
I never hope to see one.
But I will tell you anyhow,
I'd rather see one than be one.


Burgess had a great sense of humor evident in the silliness of the poem itself. It became so popular that he was hounded constantly by people asking him if he was the author and to recite it. He became so frustrated that in his final issue of "The Lark," in 1897, he wrote another poem that was a humorous attempt at claiming copyright of the day.


From the Calgary collection of
Cows on Parade
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Ah, yes, I wrote the "Purple Cow"—
I'm Sorry, now, I wrote it;
But I can tell you Anyhow
I'll Kill you if you Quote it!



Interestingly Burgess was a graduate of M.I.T. and was an instructor at UC Berkeley. The mascot of the prestigious Williams College in Massachusetts is the purple cow.


His great sense of humor can be traced all throughout academia.


You may find many other "purple cows" at Sepia Saturday by clicking here.


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Comments

Sr Crystal Mary said…
This man certainly did have a sense of humour and a good one...I loved it!
Christine H. said…
I guess purple cows make grape-flavored milk?
Nancy said…
Poor man to be hounded so. L. M. Montgomery of Anne of Green Gables fame became frustrated not long after the success of her first book. People pressed her for another one, and another after that, and so on. She wrote that she was positively sick of Anne by the time she wrote the last book!
Meri said…
Williams' mascot is a purple cow? Who knew?
Thanks, now I can't get that purple cow poem out of my mind. I think it's always been lurking back there anyway.
I really love his "come back" poem. I don't think it's going to take the place of the other one in my mind, tho.
Barbara
P.S. I'm still working on the 7 things.
Alan Burnett said…
Now this is why I love blogging in general and Sepia Saturday in particular. You never know where you are being taken by these posts but you can be confident that it will be quite fascinating. From now onwards I will keep a look out for a purple cow.
let's hope karmic law didn't apply and made him reincarnate into such a creature. would be ironic...
great post!!
:)~
HUGZ
L. D. said…
I never knew where that poem came from even though it was in all of the elementary reading books at school. Cool history and I promise not to quote it as I don't want to die.

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