Michigan Map Poem by Denise Rodgers
Saginaw Bay is the crook of a mitten.
Port Hope is right up near the thumb.
Manistee sits right where you’d put your pinky.
The Lansing spot taps on a drum.
Sturgis is south, at the base of the wrist
and there’s Mackinac at the tip top.
There are so many cities in Michigan’s mitten.
Recite them and you’ll never stop.
Mount Pleasant, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo,
Adrian, Midland and Frost,
Alpena, Kalkaska, Boyne City and Bath.
Keep driving until you get lost.
The mitten is grand, it is large, it is super,
but down there you’ll never get close to a yooper.
A yooper’s a person who’s from the U.P.
The part of the state where there’s much more to see.
There’s Laurium, Skandia, Limestone and Tula,
Marquette, Iron Mountain and Gay.
There’s Drummond and White Pine and Greenland
and Johnsville and Witch Lake and Keweenaw Bay.
So go for a ride, get out there exploring
no matter how long it might take.
And if you get finished with finding the cities,
then next you can look for the lakes . . .
Huhyuhdin, everyone? It’s ben priddy cold heer today – windy, sporadic snow, and drift-een, drift-een, drift-een. The roads were priddy durn icy today, but I still tol my husband “I munnah go gedda picher,” and headed ouh to ged a phodo of a crick. When I goh oudda of my car to take the picher, I almost fell fladon my face from the ice on the road. Geezopete! There was a car com-een and I coulda bena statistic!
I goh back inta my car safensoun, and goh turned around. I coulda used a Duhtroit left ridabouh then, buh I did a u-ey righ there addun innersection. Prolly noh the smardesthing I have ever done, buh there you go. I kinah think this coulda waded another day bud I just hadahave this phodo for this post. Anyhoo, I did find my way to a road that wasn’ covered in ice and I made my way back ta town. Before go-een home, I needed ta go ta Kroger’s fer some lunch meah for sammiches this week. I had ta lock my camera into my glovebox so no one would be tempted by ih in my seah then headed inta the groshury store. I can’ believe how slow people are inna store witheir buggies. I finally paid fermy stuff, paper towel-een and pop included and tolda cashier, “Have a good’un,eh?” Manoman! The winwas cold outside an I’m glad I wasn’ onna bumpjumper head-een down a skihill! The kids wooda liked that though!
I slid throughan innersection on my way home, buh goh here allright and saprise! The cat pooped on me wenni pickter up! Well, cripes! Buh, the poor liddle thing isn’ feel-een the bestyet. When I look atter I am pree’neer tears because she is still gedd-een over her allergy tathe fleas – buh a bih of greah news? The chickenzer gone! The ciddy madum geh riddof em. Now my kiddy gehs ta heal.
Now if you are wondering what in the heck I was just saying, let me translate that from “Michigan” for you into general English:
How are you doing, everyone? It has been pretty cold here today – windy, sporadic snow and drifting, drifting, drifting. The roads were pretty darn icy today, but I still told my husband, “I’m going to get a picture” and headed out to get a photo of a stream. When I got out of my car to take the picture, I almost fell flat on my face from the ice on the road. Oh my goodness! There was a car coming and I could have been a statistic!
I got back into my car safe and sound, and got turned around. I could have used one of those turn-abouts that they use in Detroit, but I just did a U-turn at an intersection. This was probably not the smartest thing I have ever done, but there you go. I kind of think that this could have waited another day, but I just had to have this photo for this post. Anyway, I did find my way to a road that wasn’t covered in ice and I made my way back to town. Before going home, I needed to go to Kroger for some lunch meat for sandwiches for this week. I had to lock my camera into my glove compartment so that no one would be tempted by it in my seat then I headed into the supermarket. I can’t believe how slow people are in the store with their shopping carts! I finally paid for my stuff, paper towels and sodas included and told the cashier, “Have a great day!” My goodness! The wind was cold outside and I am glad that I wasn’t on a single seat sled heading down a ski hill! The kids would have liked that though!
I slid through an intersection on my way home, but got here all right and surprise! The cat pooped on me when I picked her up! Well, darn! But, the poor little thing isn’t feeling the best yet. When I look at her I am pretty near tears because she is still getting over her allergy to the fleas – but a bit of great news? The chickens are GONE! The city made them get rid of them. Now my kitty gets to heal.
After reading Too Busy to Blog by the fabulous Year Struck, I started looking at some of the regional, or should I say, state wide dialect in Michigan. I started a list of phrases and pronunciations my family, friends and acquaintances are fond of (blindly) using and picked my mother’s brain as well as perusing Michigan Native’s web page. I had to laugh at a lot of it, because regardless of whether I like it or not, I speak “Michigan” with a nasal Michigan intonation. While I don’t say ‘prolly’, I am guilty of running my words together in a slurry of syllables and I have been known to abuse the old Glottal Stop and Flap T egregiously. And before I am arrested by the grammar police, I am going to ask you to list some of your own regional phrases and words and how you pronounce things.
G’nigh’ fernow, you guys. I’m gonna go drink a pop.