“If” – A Grateful Nod to Seuss

If I ran the zoo
(hey, you know what? I do!)
I’d make a few changes to you, you, and you
Yeah, you, Stinky Pete, with your armpits and feet
Your pre-teen boy funk smell’s about got me beat
Take a shower! I said, is that really so hard?
(You would think that to do so would leave him quite scarred).
As he screams, yells, and yawps with intense disregard
for his father, his mother, and sister – her too
Yes, it’s time for some changes, no hullabaloo
if I’m running this ride that sure smells like a zoo.

And you, yes, the tall one, with hair in tight curls
What is it with you and most teenager girls?
It’s too big, it’s too small, no that’s not quite right.
That’s PERFECT, then ISN’T, it’s day, NO, IT’S NIGHT.
Reason is meaningless talking to you,
your brain has been swiped by a Krit­utch or Groo,
There’s no other reason to act like you do.
Still, you’re quite kind, and I melt for your hugs,
I prefer you to nests of Blue Zugglenut Bugs
‘Cuz though you confound me, you don’t eat the rugs.

And let’s not forget that the zookeeper’s wife
is a bedrock of love, plus she wields a mean knife
Which you need, time to time, when attacked by a Gliphe
Who are sneaky and waiting to snuff out your life.
No loose Gliphes in my zoo, though the monkeys run free
You can call that line racist or hyperbole
Now we’ve gotten political – fiddle-dee-dee
should you cancel this story or just let it be?

These are things that we grapple with here in the zoo
All us GluGuffs and Kreetches and well, You Know Who
Must decide who is safe to roam free from their cages
And who must be locked up for ages and ages
It’s just not as simple as everyone thinks
with Gliphes always lurking for boys with feet stinks
and girls who will stand, like, for hours at sinks
If I ran the zoo (no, I don’t, it’s not true)
we would live side by side, you and me, me and you
all the Gliphes gone extinct – nothing left we should fear
But that isn’t right now, so we’ll hope for next year.

“It’s a pretty good zoo,”
Said young Gerald McGrew,
“And the fellow who runs it
Seems proud of it too.
But if I ran the zoo,”
Said young Gerald McGrew, “I’d make a few changes. That’s just what I’d do.
The lions and tigers and that kind of stuff
They have up here now are not quite good enough. You see things like these in any old zoo.
They’re awfully old­fashioned. I want something new!
So I’d open each cage, I’ll unlock every pen, Let the animals go and start over again…

– Dr. Seuss

This week, Frank gave me two options, and I chose to combine them: Use the 20th picture on your phone as inspiration” OR “Write in the style of Dr Seuss” (which, given the context of this week, has vaguely political connotations)


About #FFFocus:

Frank Chloupek holds a PhD in Physics from The Ohio State University. We have been friends since our undergraduate days at Michigan State University over 30 years ago.

Frank hates poetry

(except for any and all Limericks about a certain boy from Nantucket).

He provides challenges, topics, themes, rules to guide whatever gets put together on Fridays.


If you would like to join the weekly challenge, feel free! Just reference “Frank’s Friday Focus” (#FFFocus) on your own page, provide a pingback (paste the URL link for THIS PAGE someplace in your post), and copy/paste the link to your entry into the comment section below.

Thanks, and have fun!

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