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Parvani's December Poem Recommendations

Although not at all related to the holiday season, these pieces of poetry are sure to make you laugh, or at least give you the pleasure of a little inner chuckle.


Image from NPR


This month's recommendations:


  • "The Tiger Who Wore White Gloves, Or, What You Are You Are" by Gwendolyn Brooks


There once was a tiger, terrible and tough,

who said "I don't think tigers are stylish enough.

They put on only orange and stripes of fierce black.

Fine and fancy fashion is what they mostly lack.

Even though they proudly

speak most loudly,

so that the jungle shakes

and every eye awakes—

Even though they slither

hither and thither

in such a wild way

that few may care to stay—

to be tough just isn't enough."

These things the tiger said,

And growled and tossed his head,

and rushed to the jungle fair

for something fine to wear.

Then!—what a hoot and yell

upon the jungle fell

The rhinoceros rasped!

The elephant gasped!

"By all that's sainted!"

said wolf—and fainted.

The crocodile cried.

The lion sighed.

The leopard sneered.

The jaguar jeered.

The antelope shouted.

The panther pouted.

Everyone screamed

"We never dreamed

that ever could be

in history

a tiger who loves

to wear white gloves.

White gloves are for girls

with manners and curls

and dresses and hats and bow-ribbons.

That's the way it always was

and rightly so, because

it's nature's nice decree

that tiger folk should be

not dainty, but daring,

and wisely wearing

what's fierce as the face,

not whiteness and lace!"

They shamed him and shamed him—

till none could have blamed him,

when at last, with a sigh

and a saddened eye,

and in spite of his love,

he took off each glove,

and agreed this was meant

all to prevail:

each tiger content

with his lashing tail

and satisfied

with his strong striped hide.

"Eletelephony" by Laura Elizabeth Richards


Once there was an elephant, Who tried to use the telephant— No! No! I mean an elephone Who tried to use the telephone— (Dear me! I am not certain quite That even now I've got it right.) Howe'er it was, he got his trunk Entangled in the telephunk; The more he tried to get it free, The louder buzzed the telephee— (I fear I'd better drop the song Of elephop and telephong!)


  • "Homework Machine" by Shel Silverstein


The Homework Machine, oh, the Homework Machine,

Most perfect contraption that's ever been seen.

Just put in your homework, then drop in a dime,

Snap on the switch, and in ten seconds' time,

Your homework comes out, quick and clean as can be.

Here it is— "nine plus four?" and the answer is "three."

Three?

Oh me . . .

I guess it's not as perfect

As I thought it would be.


Nice and funny, huh? Check out more Gwendolyn Brooks, Laura E. Richards, and Shel Silverstein.

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