by Harold Reynolds

As our faithful readers will remember, Harold's most recent efforts graced these pages in Diplomacy by the Letters last issue. This time, he has truly outdone himself — we are in awe! Enjoy…

A is for Ankara, next to the Black Sea. When Turks send their fleet out, the Russians won't flee.
U is for Uncle, a word that you cry, when neighbours are swarming and no help is nigh.
S is for Sinking, a feeling you get, when neighbours conspire and start taking bets.
T is for Trusting, which isn't too smart. Your neighbours are liars and make it an art.
R is for Rebound. It's what units do, when you move to a space and your neighbour does too.
I is for Irate, not the optometrist's fee. It can come from failure of your Diplomacy.
A is for Army. You need to have lots, to keep other guys from calling the shots.

E is for England, surrounded by water. He shouldn't be trusted; he can be a rotter.
N is for Nice Guy, which you cannot be, if you want the result to be victory.
G is for Greedy; it's a Deadly Sin. Get overextended and your "allies" move in.
L is for Lucky, which you call their guesses, that give them your dots, and leave you with messes.
A is for Access, which should be denied, to your nasty neighbours who all want your hide.
N is for None, the SCs you're left, after they stab you with moves mean and deft.
D is for Damned, if don't or you do. Yep, no matter what, you're gonna get screwed.

F is for Fleet. You'll need some, I think. Grab supply centres, so they do not sink.
R is for Retreat, which you have to do, when too many units are coming at you.
A is for Allies, who're needed to win. But don't be too trusting or they'll do you in.
N is for Neighbours, each guy has a few. They are not your friends — they're out to get you.
C is for Connive, and double-dealing. Keeping friends happy and bad guys squealing.
E is for Evil (in others, not you). Lying and stabbing are things you don't do. (Nudge-nudge, wink-wink.)

G is for Germany. He might have a chance, if he can get England to start fighting with France.
E is for Edinburgh, a city of Scotch. If England has lost it, the game has been botched.
R is for Ruhr, an industrial zone. If France invades it, the German will moan.
M is for Mendicant. You know his whine: "Can you spare a dot, buddy? I've lost all of mine."
A is for Antics, used to distract an opponent from making an unwanted attack.
N is for Naples, an Italian port. Occupy it and his game will be short.
Y is for Yanking, of your neighbour's chain, when you promise him help, but deliver the pain.

I is Ionian, a really large lake. It's something Italians don't want you to take.
T is for Tantrum, an expression of rage, when you're crushed yet again and get tossed in the cage.
A is Apulia, the heel of the boot. Pop in an army; the Italian will hoot.
L is for London, a great English city. Occupying it won't make you witty.
Y is for 'WhY me?', (OK, it's a stretch), you say when you're stabbed and you need to kvetch.

R is for Russia, that guy in the East. He pretends that he's nice, but he's really a beast.
U is for Ugly, describing the board, where bad guys are massing and forming a horde.
S is for Snivel, a sound that you make, when your so-called allies your SCs they take.
S is for Serbia, the cause of The War. Austria's takeover threw peace out the door.
I is for Ice cold, which your blood must be, to stab your opponents into history.
A is for Anger, how you feel when you're stabbed, and all units gone, and all SCs nabbed.

T is for Turkey. It's cold in his corner. Stomp him to Hell so he can get warmer.
U is for Ukraine, a portion of Russia. Move in an army and Russia will smushia.
R is Rumania, dealing with scares, from Russia and Austria, who think it is theirs.
K is for Kindness, an admirable trait. Just don't expect others to reciprocate.
E is for Elegant, how you praise your win. Others are hostile and claim it's a sin.
Y is for Yellow, the colour of Turks. The yellower the map, the better it works!

And now, the additional Youngstown Great Powers!!!

C is for Catching your foe unaware. You could melt iron with his hostile stare.
H is for "Help me!", you cry in despair, while begging for aid which just isn't there.
I is for Income you get from SCs. You're likely to say "I want some more, please!"
N is for Nachos, some chips that you munch, while stabbing your neighbour and avoiding a punch.
A is for Argue, a noisy debate: why you shouldn't be put in a moribund state.

I is for India, known for its curry. It can be conquered, but not in a hurry.
N is for Naughty, to be a bad boy, treating your neighbour like he is a toy.
D is for Death, which came quickly last game. Here's hoping that this time will not end the same!
I is Impious, the way that you swear, when an army shows up that you wish weren't there.
A is for Awful, the scrape that you're in. You want to expand, but they've hemmed you in

J is for Japan, a maritime power. When he builds armies his neighbours will glower.
A is for Asia, which has lots of space. You can put units all over the place.
P is for Pieces that sit on the board. All players holler "Why can't I have more?"
A is for Annoyed, a chronic condition, when you and your units face indisposition.
N is for "Nyah-nyah!", which is really rude to say to someone when he's totally screwed.

Let's finish with a different kind of word play from another great thinker, illustrated by British cartoonist Tom for the WWI centennial.

Harold Reynolds

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