The missing words in the poems represent a set of anagrams (like post, spot, stop). The number of dashes indicates the number of letters in the word. The missing word at the end of the line will rhyme with the previous or following line to give you a big hint. Your challenge is to identify the set of anagrams by the context of the poem and the above rules.

This word game was invented by my mother Fan Brown, who sent her poems to game magazines and exulted the $25 she occasionally got in the mail. My mother-in-law, who fashioned herself as an arbiter of elevated artistic taste, sniffed at my mother’s efforts and pronounced her poems as “doggerel.” Well of course they’re doggerel, but damn fine doggerel tailored to the word enthusiast.

The King and His Queen

The king is * * * * *, no one is richer

He sits all day and drinks * * * * * from a pitcher

He beckons his queen and says with a * * * * *

“Bring me a * * * * * one, and put it there.


The Farmer

The United States is getting fat, how did it all * * * * *?

Just go to the beach to see what kind of shape we’re in.

Americans find it hard to pass up fast food burgers and greasy fries,

Avoid the * * * * * eating will make you despise the size of your thighs

* * * * * the fattest country on this planet is not an enviable state

When much of the world struggles to find food to put on their plate.