Humor Poetry posted May 14, 2024

This work has reached the exceptional level
A takeoff on The Bells by Edgar Allen Poe

The Pills

by Jim Wile

I am readying my pills—
Many pills.
Some will need renewing, and a few just need refills.
How they tumble, tumble, tumble
As they fall into their slots.
How my fingers often fumble,
And it all seems such a jumble,
And a fun time, it is not.
It is sad, sad, sad,
When I’m done, I will be glad,
For the weekly chore reminds me of the fear that it instills.
Oh, the pills, pills, pills, pills,
Pills, pills, pills—
What would happen if I cease with all these pills?

A variety of pills—
Many pills.
Rememb’ring all my ailments, now that really takes some skills!
There are pills for my colitis
And then some to help me pee.
There are ones for my arthritis
And then others for tinnitus,
Even some for my E.D!
Pills for atrial fibrillation
And to lessen constipation,
There are oh, so many others for my heart, lest it bestills.
Oh, the pills, pills, pills, pills,
Pills, pills, pills—
It’s pathetic how I need so many pills.

There was once upon a time—
A precious time,
Laughing at my parents for it seemed like such a crime,
Taking pills for every ailment,
And it might be better yet
If they practiced some curtailment.
They were heading for derailment.
They don’t need them all, I bet.
And, although it seems a shame,
In the end, I’m just the same,
But I’ve learned how to appreciate what taking them fulfills.
All these pills, pills, pills, pills,
Pills, pills, pills—
Who’d have thought I’d ever take so many pills?


This poem describes my weekly ritual of filling my pill container. Although I don't have all of these particular ailments, I have a few of them plus a fair number of others.

For those not familiar with Poe's "The Bells," with it's onomatopoeic repetitions and unique rhyme scheme and meter, you can find it at

I have chosen to use the rhyme scheme and meter of the first stanza of the original, as each stanza becomes longer and more complex as the poem continues. I have recorded my poem using this difficult meter, which you can hear by pressing the button for the sound control located above the picture.
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