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(book version)
by Mozella Rainwater Sunshine

Though King Tote  and Queen Tulah had grown old.
But they still longed for a child to love and hold.
And it finally happened bringing  great excitement into palace life.
King Tote was very  happy with Tulah his wife.
Queen Tulah started gaining weight!
Staying up past midnight and sleeping late.
Her appetite went out of control. 
She ate fruits and veges bowl after bowl.

The months went by and...
Finally, great happiness came into their world when Queen Tulah produced a baby girl.

Joyfilled King Tote lost his prospective
And issued a ridiculous directive
Daily he boomed loud and clear
so all in the palace could hear,

"You must amuse the princess
With games and rhymes
And keep her happy  all the time.
To fail is a serious crime!
And never let the princess experience pain,
And royal favors you will gain.

" Queen Tulah sensibly disagreed,
"Dear, discipline is what she needs.
"Spoiling her will bring disaster.
Real life will help her mature faster."

But King Tote's determined eyes reflected an icy sheen
As he rebutted Tulah his queen.

"Regardless what you say,
I will have my way!

"This long wished for daughter we've begotten,
I'm going to SPOIL HER ROTTEN!"

Undaunted, Queen Tulah's words were wise and precise
As she offered level-headed advice "
You better stop and think!"

King Tote responded with a mocking laugh and an angry stare,
As he raised a clenched fist into the air
He pounded the table and proceeded to declare
"Regardless of demeanor a royal is deemed high
Her blood is bluer than a clear summer sky." "

But," persisted Tulah the Queen,
"She must obey the Golden Rule,
Or become a royal fool."

Still, King Tote, failed to heed Queen Tulah's wise words.
His good sense had gone to the birds.
It took a hundred servants to keep the princess happy and clean
But all the pampering only caused her to grow more selfish and mean
She disobeyed, disrespected & sassed her elders and servants alike
But one day the naughty little tyke went too far & told her mother to take a hike

Queen Tulah said, "You don't talk to me like that!
I'm your mother." she told her spoiled rotten  brat.

For an instant, Princess Lala looked humbled & sorry
But, soon as Queen Tulah disappeared from view,
Princess Lala found more bad things to do.
"Please don't ride the two-wheeler in the rain."  Begged Nurse Mike.
'Course, you know, she went on & rode her bike.

In the mud and slush, in the high wind and sleet,
She fell in a hole in the middle of the street.
As the rushing waters and & rotting sewage was pushing her through the pipes, "Help!" she cried.
Wet, cold and scared in the filthy dark,
She felt like all her kith & kin had died.

Remembering her parents love, her soft warm bed,
Her silk dresses and matching caps for her head,
The delicious foods & toys on the shelf,
"If I get home I'm going to behave myself."

Suddenly, strong hands lifted her up, up into the light of day.
"What a stinky child, Who owns this rotting stray?"
"I bet she was bad & wouldn't obey.
That's probably the reason they threw her away."

The Chasten family held her captive & treated her real bad
Now Princess Lala knew how it feels to be sad.
They made her sweep, cook, launder and iron their clothes
Feed the dogs, make tea & mend their socks and hose.

When she told them she was Princess Lala, 
Destined to someday be their queen,
They laughed & mocked her and destroyed all her self-esteem.

The queen was ageing fast with worry too great to bear.
The king couldn't sleep & was losing all his hair.
Daily reports brought rumors & sightings.  
But the most frightening
Had Princess Lala struck by lightning.

Then a student dressed very neatly, said,
"She was attacked by dogs & eaten up completely."

A washer woman breathlessly announced, 
"Princess Lala was trampled by a horse & a beagle."
But the ornithologist swore,
"I saw her ferried into the sky by a giant ferocious eagle."

A little boy tearfully reported,
"Our Princess Lala was kidnapped by some gypsies & carried away in a train."
But his pal told a different story. 
She said, "I saw her melting in the pouring rain."

Nurse Mike, Cook, & the hundred servants were frightened & ashamed.
At times they argued & refused to accept blame!

Unable to keep his true feelings hid An old servant blurted,
"This happened because of what King Tote did.
"He should have disciplined that incorgible little kid...

" Secretly & sneekedly in the halls King Tote treaded.
He heard them & said,
"I ought to have them beheaded! "Their mouths smack of treason!"
"Now, now", countered Queen Tulah with logic & reason,
"The ladies & gents like us are sick with pain & sorrow.
Let's pray our child's safe return by sunrise tomorrow."

The army, the navy, the infantry, & the marines
Thoroughly checked mountains, caves, alleys, rivers & streams.
But all failed to check the delapidated dens behind the public garbage bins.
Every breath of air assaulted Princess Lala's lungs with the odor of decay & rot
Whenever the weather got humid & hot.
No more pampering & petting. 
No more pouting & fretting.

Hard work & ridicule was all she was getting.
A month of Sundays went past,
And Princess Lala matured fast.
She'd been gone so long, her absence was no longer news.
"I've learned my lessons & paid my dues."

Finally, one night, fully dressed Princess Lala lay awake in bed.
"I must be brave & use my head.
"Without servant's aid, I'll be strong & unafraid!"

So when the Chastens & their dogs were snoring & sound asleep,
Princess Lala snuck out & hid in the garbage heap.
The next morning when the royal wagon came & dumped on the side,
Princess Lala secretly secured herself a ride.

The nightmarish ordeal was finally over
& Princess Lala was (so to speak) back in royal clover.
But she was so different, no more screaming & shoving. 
She was now mature & loving.

Some believed she was an imposter & wanted to throw her back into the street.
To convince them that she was truly Princess Lala, she had to screech & stamp her feet,
Throw a tantrum & a royal fit,
and sass them with her Spoiled Rotten Wit.
She's our princess, they had to admit.

Queen Tulah reminded King Tote
"We're lucky, for many children's body's & souls are lost & forgotten
When parents spoil them rotten."  

Painting by Mary T. Hoffman - God's Creation in Art

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