My Cat

Inside the house

my cat is a cat

napping and lounging all day -

but outside the house

she’s a wild jungle beast

silently stalking her prey.


Inside the house

she’s cuddles and pur

and a nudge so loving and mild.

But outside the house

just waiting to pounce

she’s a lioness fearless and wild.

This Little Pencil

This little pencil, small and worn –

That somebody has bitten–

Has a zillion words all stuffed inside,

Just waiting to be written.

And not just words, but paragraphs

of wisdom, rhyme and wit-

While I just stare and wonder how

they got it all to fit.

But a more important question-

I can say without a doubt-

Isn't how they got the words to fit-

But can I get the right ones out?

Big Words

There are certain words that I just like to say.

Words I could go around saying all day.

Eucalyptus is one, platypus too,

and in a pinch Prestidigitation will do.

It’s not that I care at all what they’re about –

I just like how they feel when they’re on their way out.

The Kid with All the Answers

Before the teacher has finished the question,

Sarah Jean has her hand in the air.

"Call on me, call on me " she whispers out loud

as she jumps up and down in her chair.

Whether the question is four times five

or "What are the parts of a cell?"

She is waving her arm around and around,

calling "I know, I know! Let me tell.

"I like Sarah Jean but I worry,

and sometimes I just want to hide-

'cause I think that some day she's going to explode -

she has so many answers inside.

Getting Rid of Hiccups

Hold your breath till your face turns blue;

Drink a large glass of water or two; 

Stand on your head with your feet in the air ;

Ask someone  mean to give you a scare; 

Drink something bitter ;

Or drink something sweet ;

Bend way over till your hands touch your feet ;

Jump up and down for an hour or so; 

Sit very still and just wish them to go; 

Spin around and around till you can’t stand up ;

Try to drink hot coffee from the wrong side of the cup; 

Walk on the ceiling with magnetized shoes; 

Listen to an hour of evening news; 

Paint your face with spots and flowers ;

Listen to bagpipe -music for hours. 

These are my ways to make hiccups quit -

But none of them (hiccup) work (hiccup) one little bit. 

I've been Eaten

I’ve been eaten by an alligator
Or a crocodile I guess.
My teacher told me the difference,
but now I must confess
that I wasn’t really listening;
my mind was far away.
I was thinking about the weekend
and the games that I would play.
So alligator or crocodile,
Though it doesn’t seem to matter:
Now that I’ve been eaten,
I know one of them is fatter.

Making Lists

Step one: I write something down.

Step two: I erase it.

Step three: I start over again.

Step four: I misplace it.

Step five: I search and I search.

Step six: I give up and play.

Lists are so good at using up time,

in an orderly organized way.

Doing and not Doing

There is a thing that I have to do,
that I really, really
 don't want to.
So I sit and think of reasons why
it can't be done; I shouldn't try.
So I don't– but then I think of how
If only I'd done it, then right here and right now,
the thing that I don't want to do would be done
and my list of to–dos would be shorter by one.
But I didn't, so it's still a thing I have to do,
that I really really don't want to.

(I was wondering: does this ever happen to you?)

The Diagnosis

The doctor frowned and shook his head

"We've seen this all before," he said.

"He sings sometimes instead of talking.

He dances when he should be walking.

He makes strange faces, runs around

and generally acts like a clown.

The diagnosis is quite clear:

We've got a case of the sillies here.I

t's quite important not to laugh

if he acts like a duck, or worse, a giraffe.

If he flaps his arms and says he can fly

and makes whooshing noises as he goes by

if he bobs his head with his tongue stuck out

and whispers, or waves his hands about,

don't smile or laugh 'cause if you do –you could get a case of the sillies too."

The True Story of the Jack O' Lantern

Jack they say, one autumn day

did fool the devil well;
And then and there, did make him swear,

to keep him out of hell.
But when he died, he was denied

his entrance into glory;
And so he roams our streets at night

and therein lies the story.
To see at night, he has a light

that comes from hells own flame-
Which burns so well in a turnip* shell

–and jack-o-lantern is its name.

* (of course, today it would be a pumpkin)

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