The Spoonbill Generator

The Question

In front of a crowd of reliable hens

I brandished my snaps of Montmartre

I showed them again my collection of pens

With the aid of this magic binocular-lens

Bequeathed to my uncle by Sartre

They stared; and their beaks fell agog in surmise

As I told them the truth about fish

The way that the future shines out of their eyes

The horrors to come, and the infamous lies

In the tale of Enuma Elish

Then one of their number, the oldest, I guess

Made venture to ask waht I knew

Ashamed as I was, I could hardly confess

That the answer, sewn into the hem of my dress

Was the square root of forty-two.

So I uttered a lie both stupendous and crass

I said I was Alfred the Great

I said that my mother was born in Madras

And ran a small farm in a polar crevasse

Where her cat had been Queen of Kuwait

The henfolk, aghast at these blasphemous lies,

Set fire to my good gaberdine

Ignoring my protests and strenuous cries

And the acrid aroma that rose from my thighs

As I ran in great pain from the scene

The moral, my friends, of this desolate tale

Is to cleave , sans regard, to the truth

Though fictions may glisten alike to The Grail

They're as hard to control as a forty-foot whale

In the hands of intemperate youth


Contributors: P, Roland, Bop, TG
Poem finished: 13th February 1997