Tongue Tied

Google Images

As a young child I used to lithp.
Yes, lithp.

These days no-one would think of it
as a PITA (pain in the ass)

I ‘Googled it’ and it seems
there are even different types
of lithping too
and, I never even knew.

My mum never paid too much
after all, when I was an adult
she would get her own words
all mixed up sometimes too.

One time she said something
was con-fist-ticated
and, I didn’t have a clue
what she was talking about
so asked her to use it in
a sentence.
Turns out the word she was
trying to say was ‘confiscated.’

But, I digress

Sixpence back then was thixpenth
even good old sausages were thauthageth
but because of the different way the
sounds are formed
a ship was still a ship.

In this day and age people sometimes
think a lisp on a child is cute
my step-father on the other hand, didn’t
to get me out of the disgusting habit
he would make me say everything
through clenched tight-together-teeth
but if I slipped up and lithped
in front of him instead of
thinking it cute or fan-tab-ulous
he’d thlap me, repeatedly.

After tho many thlaps
I thoon learned not
to lisp anymore.


© Daydreamertoo *All rights reserved

The pictures are examples from Google but shows a new born baby and young child who are tongue tied. There are also different degrees in severity of being tongue tied too.
Apparently, if a new born is seen to be tongue tied, they usually snip the skin which joins the bottom of the tongue and the mouth. mine was never done and maybe it added to why I lisped. Still do at times despite the slaps…LOL
My step-father was a bully and didn’t have a clue when it came to being a good parent.

Shared with dVersepoets Poetics: Logophilia I think I used a few new-ish words in this Anna, hope it meets the prompt 🙂

Author: Daydreamer

I live on a beautiful island in Atlantic Canada.

22 thoughts on “Tongue Tied”

  1. your poem traveled in time with your “speech therapy” (i’ve taken voice therapy, which is similar to speech therapy, but i did it with a professional, not a step-parent)

    bonus track

  2. What an awful man. Beginning so sweetly, and ending so terribly. Have to wonder how many other lispers were “cured” in such a manner. Love your poem, hate what you went through.

  3. That hard on you, huh! Often times I’ve been told ‘pain’ is a good teacher. A few smacks on the student all it takes. Nowadays, prospects of the PTA, Police and lawyers getting involved are real. Great write, Bren!


  4. I can relate. I didn’t have a lithp, but no matter the problem, the teaching method you describe is the one I was raised under. When playing catch with him–I was ten–if I threw a bad one to him, he’d throw it back at me as hard as he could (i couldn’t even see it) then curse me and smack me around for being afraid of the ball. Not fun, but I made it–mostly unscathed. I grew up filled with fear, but afraid to let it show. How crazy is that?
    That aside, great write! Excellent!

  5. And they call them “The Good Old Days!” How did we survive? Fab’ write and interesting for so much more than the quality of the write. Congrats on surviving, too.

  6. oh my.. made me sad to hear that he thought slapping could cure a way it may did but.. love the wordplays though..made me smile..

  7. Excellent poem.

    There are certain words I can never say properly.

    The old generation sometimes think everything can be fixed by harsh punishment or scaring it out of the child.

  8. Ooh, this is terrible – you wrote it very well, but it is very painful. Well done for getting out of it and for making such a good poem. k.

  9. Awww, reminds me of my daughter Mary … only she wasn’t thlapped for her listhp … she even went on to get her degree in linguisticsths. (PthS: She lostht her lishtp later on in thschool thsomehow … Love you, Bren … 🙂

  10. Your first line set me laughing and I enjoyed the stories/digressions with the clear impression that your narrator had learned not to lisp–enjoyed until I met the step-father who was no longer a digression, but the point. I wasn’t laughing at the end. Oddly, the narrative voice doesn’t condemn him, just makes him brutal.

    Well done!

  11. The cat hassnt an ider how to do that. But yeah swounfs like a pain haha and yeah he deserves a slap and more

  12. This is wonderful and terrible (your stepfather’s method) and you lead us to the emotional climax so well. Your versions of words tied my tongue and allowed me to experience your subject. My brain had to do some mental gymnastics.

  13. Sigh. I’d like to thlap HIM upthide the head! Lord God, so many in that generation had NO CLUE about nurturing a child’s self-esteem. It gave us a model of parenting though: just do everything different!

  14. I enjoyed this reflection, Bren. And now I am wondering, Bren, are you thankful that your step-father got you out of lisping,even though it sounds as if his method left a lot to be desired? Do you think you would have grown out of it on your own? I will check back a bit later to see what you say…

    1. No, I wouldn’t have grown out of it at all. It was too deeply ingrained in me to speak that way. Teaching me to clench my teeth was a good idea
      but the slaps, I could certainly have done without. LOL

      1. Yes, I am sure you would have learned just as well WITHOUT the slaps! Too bad he didn’t realize that!

  15. frig…the slapping in the end is heart breaking…esp for something a child can not help….ugh….i am glad you overcame, but not how…nice play on the word btm lithp

Comments are closed.