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Poetry

Rodents, Birds, and Mastodons

  1. I saw an army marching slowly o’er the hill
  2. With guns and cannons blaring enough to make one ill.
  3. Then they kept on coming, the valley they did fill.
  4. When I saw the soldiers, they were stranger still.
  5. Nine hundred six were el’phants with stars across their backs.
  6. Their ev’ry step that thundered made ev’ry boulder crack.
  7. Nine hundred six were eagles lined within a stack
  8. With blood-red painted bellies and iv’ry in their packs.
  9. Yet who could they be fighting on that tiny, tiny plain?
  10. I turned my gaze over away from all the rain.
  11. And right smack in the middle on an isle that seems to wane
  12. Was a roaring purple lion that breathed a roaring flame.
  13. Well, fifty-four were tortured by the fire’s flaming heat,
  14. And forty others suffered behind their comrade’s feet.
  15. The rest had been quite frightened and before they could e’en speak,
  16. Their commander blew the trumpet, and then he yelled, “Retreat!”
  17. Many years went by, and the valley thought it well,
  18. And ’twasn’t long ’til beavers had a population swell.
  19. They knew something’s awry, but couldn’t just quite tell
  20. When they saw the army r’turning bigger than when they fell.
  21. There were no guns nor cannons. They made far too much noise.
  22. Rather gold was now their weapon and the promise of great toys.
  23. The beavers gladly ’ccepted and thanked them for the joys,
  24. And the beavers’ big-chinned leader led them to their death.

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By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news stories, focusing on municipal, provincial, and federal politics, specializing in investigative journalism and critical analysis from a leftist political lens. He also writes regular editorials on general politics and social issues.

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