Saturday, 20 November 2010

The Riddle of the Fish: A Poem by Pete Marshall

The Riddle of the Fish
a poem by Pete Marshall

As gold would rise in morning skies
Across the fjords and mountains high
A cat would mew a man would sigh
And toss a Dunhill on the fire

The Danish blue was soft to chew
As plans were made for tea for two
She’d knead the dough and blend the food
He’d tend his horse and wait for you

The Red coats marched in Pall Mall’s streets
To words of war and drummers beats
The milk would sour as mothers weep
And doves would fly for peace they seek

The Kaiser came upon the green
Where troops would march and death was seen
The coffee pots would shine and gleam
As Princes rode towards machine

The White flag flew above the rim
No beer would flow nor Nobel’s sing
For canine joys had seen them sin
When masters blew and sent them in


Albert Einstein posed a riddle and said that 98% of the worlds population would never solve it! The riddle was the Riddle of the Fish? Today Poetry & Science intertwine as I ask you "who has the fish?"

The Riddle is as follows

There are 5 houses that are each a different colour.
There is a person of a different nationality in each house.
The 5 owners drink a certain drink. They each smoke a certain brand of cigarettes and also have a certain pet. No owner has the same pet, smokes the same brand of cigarettes nor drinks the same drink.
The question is. "Who has the fish?"

1. The British man lives in the red house.
2. The Swedish man has a dog for a pet.
3. The Danish man drinks tea.
4. The green house is to the left of the white house.
5. The owner of the green house drinks coffee.
6. The person that smokes Pall Mall has a bird.
7. The owner of the yellow house smokes Dunhill.
8. The person that lives in the middle house drinks milk.
9. The Norwegian lives in the first house.
10. The person that smokes Blend, lives next to the one that has a cat.
11. The person that has a horse lives next to the one that smokes Dunhill.
12. The one that smokes Bluemaster drinks beer.
13. The German smokes Prince.
14. The Norwegian lives next to a blue house.
15. The person that smokes Blend, has a neighbour that drinks water.

I hope you have enjoyed this little piece of fun & if you are stuck...therein the poem lies the answer?

If you would like the answer and how the poem tells the tale...please email, marked "The Riddle of the Fish" and I will ease your frustrations...


moondustwriter said...

I love the way you write historical poetry - this one is personal

When I have time I'm going to figure out the riddle

Thanks Pete
Happy Saturday to all

Aquarius63 said...

Is it the German that lives in the green house, drinks coffee and smokes Prince?
Excellent poem Pete and very cleverly done.


Aquarius63 said...

I meant to say Pete, I only came up with that answer from your poem, I have to go out and won't be home until this evening, so if I am wrong I shall try again then. If I am right well done Pete. ;0)


haisley said...

I can't figure who has the fish...hope u will tell me the answer i want to share it with my students

annell said...

Riddles are hard and can be confusing. I am confused.....but I enjoyed your poem.

One Stop - The Place For Poets, Writers & Artists said...

hi anita....i would not like to give the answer away so us at with the heading Riddle of the Fish and i will explain accordingly...cheers pete

hedgewitch said...

If stuck in a prison cell for six months, I might have eventually figured it out, but my brain got caught on that tricky water/cat elimination. Thanks for causing me to grind my teeth happily for half an hour though. ;)

Heather Grace Stewart said...

Love the poem and as for the riddle..WHAT are you doing to me on what's supposed to be a lazy Saturday?

Thanks--I'm guessing the cat has the fish, and is a happy cat for that.

Just love this site.


Claudia said...

ha - ha pete - this was really cool. einstein was a highly intelligent and funny man - i've been visiting his house in bern, where he was living for some years...and wouldn't it be for the flag i carry for my country.. i'd say that all is relative...smiles your way mr. riddle maker - you rock!
and i LOVE your poem - good job!

One Stop - The Place For Poets, Writers & Artists said...

must say i am loving the far we have one person that was spot on.....and great to see i am causing headaches on a saturday...cheers pete

libithina said...

this was a goodun'! .. brilliantly written but a real twisty, tasty, teaser .. I've mixed all them houses .. drinks .. smokes .. pets .. bet it's sticking out by a bulbous fish eye :) hope you won't keep us dangling on the end of that fishing line Pete :) please @me @libithina
~ Lib ~ said...

um...I am waiting to my girl Laura (lauralynnpoetry) comes over...perhaps we will be able to riddle this!

riddles make me think of a character in a novel named Blane the mean train....what series and what book?

libithina said...

think this could become a cult :)
husband wants to have a go lol

dustus said...

Pete, such a creative way to utilize excellent poetry to get us thinking. "The milk would sour as mothers weep
And doves would fly for peace they seek." Amazing post. cheers.

Beachanny said...

Higher math is not my calling; but it is for my children and was for my husband. They understand the math for the time the train gets to Chicago because people are sitting on bleachers in Newark, but I thought that was nonsense. I can see a kind of equation here, but it took your poem for me to unwind the riddle. But as I said before, even without the riddle your poem stands alone and as usual is brilliant. Thanks, Gay @beachanny

repressedsoul said...

Given time and a piece of paper I cracked it! The coffee drinker it is ;D