This is my fifth poem of week two of the online retreat.
A penguin, a panda, a porcupine, and a platypus
walk into a bar; the bartender thinks she’s hallucinating.
The old man at the other end of the bar asks the porcupine
if he can borrow a quill for his cocktail; the porcupine says no,
he’s writing a letter to his mother before he goes to bed.
The penguin waddles over to the jukebox and puts in a quarter.
“Haven’t you ever heard of email?”
The panda interrupts: “Hey! Don’t play Meat Loaf again!
I’m sick of that song!”
The platypus nurses his beer. He doesn’t have
anything to say—plus he likes Meat Loaf.
The sound of a gentle guitar pours out of the jukebox;
the penguin closes his eyes and sways.
“John Denver again?!” The panda sighs.
“You know you’re never gonna fly, right?”
“I know,” says the penguin.
“But I can dream.”
The platypus looks up from his beer.
“Not so fast there, Tex.
“I’m a platypus, you’re a penguin, Gil’s a porcupine,
and Reg is a panda. We’re in a bar, and
you’re playing John Denver on a jukebox.
“Where’s the joke?”
(16 October 2020)
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