The Doctor’s Cures

The Doctor was well-known for his elixirs and his pills
And folks from far and wide would ask his help to cure their ills

For coughs and cuts and cracks and colds, for ear wax and gray hair
For “Too much yawning!” “Needs more toes!” or “How did that get there?”

He’d say, “One sec!” then he would check his shelves for quite a while
“Not that one, no” – he’d make a show – until he’d grasp a vial

“Yes, this one should suffice,” he’d say, then pack it with a letter
Which, when opened, only said, “Take these until you’re better.”

And many folks who took his cures indeed would get much stronger
The rest would read the note and say, “I guess I’ll take it longer.”

One day, a girl with broken nose, just finishing her visit
Looked at her vial, she tried to smile, but asked: “Please sir, what is it?”

The Doctor tipped his glasses down, and said, “I shouldn’t tell it.
Another doc may snatch it up, and he would try to sell it!

“But I took good luck pills today (they sell for just six gold!)
And given that, I know there’d be no danger if I told.

“So here’s the tale: when noses fail, I fill a jar with sneeze
Then stir in schnozzes, snouts, and trunks, and that’s how I make these.”

Back in the crowd, a woman cried out, “How can snot make you healthy?”
Said Doctor back, “Why don’t you ask how gold can make you wealthy?”

This satisfied them, till a man with bent teeth and jaw aches
Received his cure, but blurted: “Sir, what’s this that I’m to take?”

“Shark’s teeth, hound’s teeth, teeth that graced the mightiest of smiles
Are mashed on up with coconut, then boiled to fill your vial.”

The crowd gave a groan, folks said, “We all know – you don’t eat teeth to fix your grin!”
The Doctor said, “No? Well do you suppose you eat fat to make you thin?”

Again the crowd decided that the Doctor’s words were wise
Until another man approached, with groans and moans and sighs

“Please help,” he begged, “My belly hurts so much that I could cry!
My mother’s pot roast did me in – I’m worried I may die!”

The Doctor tapped his chin, then said, “Why, give me just a minute.”
The man paid for a bottle, but then had to ask: “What’s in it?”

“Your stomach rumbles like a stone, so this is full of rocks.
Your breath is foul, so I prescribe the essence of clean socks.

“You shake like jelly, so that’s in; you shiver, so there’s ice
Plus skin of frog and growl of dog, and mud to give it spice.”

The sick man cursed, “That’ll make me worse! No way I’m going to try it!”
The Doctor frowned, then smiled, then shrugged. “Well then, why did you buy it?”


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