“Some Geese”

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Schopenhauer.jpg

Every child who has the use
Of his senses knows a goose.
See them underneath the tree
Gather round the goose-girl’s knee,
While she reads them by the hour
From the works of Schopenhauer.
How patiently the geese attend!
But do they really comprehend
What Schopenhauer’s driving at?
Oh, not at all; but what of that?
Neither do I; neither does she;
And, for that matter, nor does he.

— Oliver Herford

Gelett Burgess

I never saw a Purple Cow,
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
I’d rather see than be one.

That’s “Purple Cow,” written in 1895 by Berkeley drafting instructor Gelett Burgess. It grew so popular that it began to haunt him; eventually he wrote “Confession: And a Portrait Too, Upon a Background That I Rue”:

Ah yes, I wrote the Purple Cow,
I’m sorry now I wrote it.
But I can tell you anyhow,
I’ll kill you if you quote it.

Uffia

http://sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=272246

When sporgles spanned the floreate mead
And cogwogs gleet upon the lea,
Uffia gopped to meet her love
Who smeeged upon the equat sea.
Dately she walked aglost the sand;
The boreal wind seet in her face;
The moggling waves yalped at her feet;
Pangwangling was her pace.

— Harriet R. White

The Python

http://sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=302367

A python I should not advise,
It needs a doctor for its eyes,
And has the measles yearly.
However, if you feel inclined
To get one (to improve your mind,
And not from fashion merely),
Allow no music near its cage;
And when it flies into a rage
Chastise it most severely.
I had an Aunt in Yucatan
Who bought a Python from a man
And kept it for a pet.
She died because she never knew
These simple little rules and few;–
The snake is living yet.

— Hilaire Belloc

Limerick

There once was an old man of Lyme
Who married three wives at a time
When asked, “Why a third?”
He replied, “One’s absurd
And bigamy, sir, is a crime.”

— William Cosmo Monkhouse

Moorlands of the Not

http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=134340

Across the moorlands of the Not
We chase the gruesome When;
And hunt the Itness of the What
Through forests of the Then.
Into the Inner Consciousness
We track the crafty Where;
We spear the Ego tough, and beard
The Selfhood in his lair.
With lassos of the brain we catch
The Isness of the Was;
And in the copses of the Whence
We hear the think bees buzz.
We climb the slippery Whichbark tree
To watch the Thusness roll
And pause betimes in gnostic rimes
To woo the Over Soul.

— Anonymous

The Platypus

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Gould_John_Duckbilled_Platypus_1845-1863.png

The Platypus

My child, the Duck-billed Platypus
A sad example sets for us:
From him we learn how Indecision
Of character provokes Derision.
This vacillating Thing, you see,
Could not decide which he would be,
Fish, Flesh or Fowl, and chose all three.
The scientists were sorely vexed
To classify him; so perplexed
Their brains, that they, with Rage at bay,
Call him a horrid name one day,–
A name that baffles, frights and shocks us,
Ornithorhynchus paradoxus.

— Oliver Herford

Poem

Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea,
And love is a thing that can never go wrong,
And I am Marie of Roumania.

— Dorothy Parker