Definition

One must make a distinction however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the result is not poetry, nor till the autocrats among us can be “literalists of the imagination”—above insolence and triviality and can present for inspection, imaginary gardens with real toads in them, shall we have it.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A second favo(u)rite poem to share with you



warty bliggens
the toad



Rob Halle
Wikimedia Commons



i met a toad
the other day by the name
of warty bliggens
he was sitting under
a toadstool
feeling contented
he explained that when the cosmos
was created
that toadstool was especially
planned for his personal
shelter from sun and rain
thought out and prepared
for him
do not tell me
said warty bliggens
that there is not a purpose
in the universe
the thought is blasphemy

a little more
conversation revealed
that warty bliggens
considers himself to be
the center of the said
universe
the earth exists
to grow toadstools for him to sit under
the sun to give him light
by day and the moon
Wikimedia Commons
and wheeling constellations
to make beautiful
the night for the sake of
warty bliggens

to what act of yours
do you impute
this interest on the part
of the creator
of the universe
i asked him
why is it that you
are so greatly favored

ask rather
said warty bliggens
what the universe
has done to deserve me

if i were a 
human being i would 
not laugh 
too complacently 
at poor warty bliggins 
for similar 
absurdities 
have only too often 
lodged in the crinkles 
of the human cerebrum 

by Archy,
a vers libre bard who would enjoy our imaginary garden

from the book Archy & Mehitabel
by Don Marquis (1878-1937)

Probably Don Marquis's most famous character, Archy is said, by his author, to have been a vers libre bard whose soul, when he died, transmigrated into the body of a cockroach.
This made it very difficult for the poet to write his free verse, which he had to do by using the author's typewriter at night. He would climb up onto the typewriter and jump down, head first, onto the letter he wanted, then climb back up the typewriter and repeat the process.
I have chosen this poem from the book Archy and Mehitabel because it first makes me laugh, then gives me to reflect on purpose in the universe, the theory of transmigration, the indestructibility of cockroaches and, of course, those "similar absurdities...lodged in the crinkles of the human cerebrum."

Posted for my second contribution to the Favo(u)rite Poems series. Thanks, Toads, it's been fun, and if you think I might have posted this same poem on a Monday a couple of years ago, you're probably right. The operative word for this series is favo(u)rite. —Kay

12 comments:

Susan said...

Big smiles here. Thanks, Kay.

Grandmother (Mary) said...

Love this... I'll take it when I visit the grands at Christmas. It all depends on our point of view.

Lolamouse said...

I, too, am now a fan of Archy! I checked out the book after your first posting and am so happy to see another!

Mama Zen said...

This is marvelous!

Marian said...

well, you know this is my favorite. kindred souls, Kay! xoxo

hedgewitch said...

I love this, Kay--a big fan of Archy, and this points out the classic reductio ad absurdum argument beautifully.Thanks for sharing today.

Fireblossom said...

Warty Bliggins doesn't need any self-esteem workshops, that's for sure! I love Archy & Mehitabel. Such a classic.

Margaret said...

Quite quirky! Never have heard this before, thanks!

Hannah said...

I enjoyed this and Warty Bliggens thoroughly, Kay, thank you!!

Quite a deep lil' amphibian!

Ella said...

I hadn't heard of Archy and Mehitabel-thank you Kay! I love the charm n' humor in this verse!

Susie Clevenger said...

Thanks Kay!! I wasn't familiar with this!

grapeling said...

hah! glad to be introduced to Archy. thank you, Kay ~