Extempore Effusions on the Completion of Masechet Bava Kama פרק ג’: המניח את הכד

Reuven leaves his jug out in the street
Shimon bumps into it with his feet
Barrel-owner must pay.
–Barrel? What did you say?
I thought jug! Jug is barrel. Repeat!

Reuven’s barrel is out in the street.
Shimon bumps into it with his feet.
The jug owner must pay
Jug? What did you just say?
I thought barrel. That’s jug, I repeat.

“You bumped into my barrel! Now pay!”
No, said Ulah, For it’s not the way
Of most people to look
When they walk in the shuk
Keep your barrels inside and away!

If a public path goes through your farm
Can you block it off? Widespread alarm
Would ensue. You cannot
That is, first you have got
To provide a new route free of harm.

If you turn over mounds of dog shit
(It’s good fertilizer, you’ll admit.)
And some guy walks right in
Oh, what deep shit he’s in
So are you! Because you pay for it.

Rabbi Yehuda says: Take out your trash
Leave it there thirty days in a stash
For the sake of this plan
Joshua conquered the land
Should one step in it, you don’t owe cash.

Reuven strolls with his bucket along
Shimon comes with a beam, straight and long.
Just then BOOM! Hear the smash
Beam and barrel go crash
But we hold neither man in the wrong.

Well a beam is quite phallic you know
And a bucket’s a place it might go
If a man starts to vex
His poor wife during sex
Does he need to be careful? Or no?

Is a man during sex like a beam-
Holder? Is that the case, does it seem?
Maybe he’s like a wood
Chopper who (though he should
Have looked out), killed a man, not by scheme?

Can you run fast in a public place
Should you slow down, for life’s not a race?
If you cause a big spill
You’re to blame, so we will
Blame. But pre-shabbat, you’ve got a case.

Chanina would say when the light
Would begin to fade each Friday night:
“Let us go greet the queen
Who has come on the scene
Like a bride. Such a beautiful sight.”

Can an ox show behavior that’s smart?
Can it do more than pull a big cart?
Papa’s ox, when with ache,
in its tooth, it would take
Beer and drink ’til the pain would depart.

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