Napowrimo #30: Advice for mice

for mice.

If Lanius excubitor
(the Great Grey Shrike)
should happen to impale you on
a big sharp spike,

it’s really nothing personal:
it just intends to rip
some chunks of flesh from off your bones
and needs a better grip.

They call the shrike the butcher bird
and butchery is harder
if you do it without any knives
and a thornbush for a larder.


Napowrimo #28: bees and wasps

Honey, of course, is made by bees
but some may not have heard
about the hives of Cornish wasps
that make the lemon curd.


a bit late, but at least I’m back to only one behind schedule.


Napowrimo #27: Barnaby the Wonderhound

Barnaby the Wonderhound
can leap tall buildings at a single bound
and his amazing supernose
can track a man wherever he goes.
He’d be superb at fighting crime,
but he prefers to spend his time
looking for a place to snooze
and widdling in his owners’ shoes.


Napowrimo #24: Rooster Death

In Italy there lives a fowl
they know as Rooster Death;
but mainly that’s because it has
such dreadful garlic breath.

So if you think your reputation’s 
getting rather ghastly
then after meals be sure to eat
a little bunch of parsley.


Napowrimo #23: Lapwings

Because it’s Shakespeare’s birthday (probably), a poem inspired by a Shakespeherian bird reference:


Now begin;
For look where Beatrice, like a lapwing, runs
Close by the ground, to hear our conference.
Much Ado About Nothing, 3.ii.23-5

The winter flocks of round-winged lapwings
with their creaking, bubbling song
are sharing all the gossip gained
all summer long.

They spend the summer slyly lurking
in the tangled tussock-grass
and listening to every word
as people pass.


Napowrimo #22: the baboon

One night a belligerent young baboon
decided he wanted to challenge the moon.
So he pointed his colourful arse at the sky
defying the moon until, bye and bye,
just as his legs were starting to ache
and his vertical bottom beginning to shake,
along came some clouds and the moon went in;
which he decided to count as a win.