Our Friend the Vulture

The vulture is a picky bird;
He picks a creature from a herd
And waits until it’s fallen dead,
Then perches on its swollen head
And pokes his beak beneath its hide
To peck at offal tucked inside
Of all the stuff the sun has fried.

A cloak of feathers dark and mean
With bits of gizzard stuck between
Enshrouds him with a sombre sheen,
Befitting his repast unclean.
His neck is bent and folded back
Upon itself; it has a knack
Of bouncing like a broken spring,
A ghastly bobbing noggin thing.

Beware the vulture, girls and boys!
He’ll rend your corpse with grisly poise,
’Til no-one near can bear the noise.
He’ll drink your juices, tear your flesh,
Eat every part that isn’t fresh;
He’ll strip yer bones and won’t consult yer—
Quite the fiend, our friend the vulture.

31 July 2005 · Whatever

You really are shaping up to be a regular Hilare Belloc, aren't you? ('Beware the vulture, girls and boys!')

When's the book coming out? My future children will love this.

Added by James Bachman on 2 August 2005.

Indeed, although that line also has shades of “Beware the Bandersnatch.” I thought about replacing it with one less obviously Belloc-y, but didn’t want to lose “grisly poise/bear the noise”.

As for the book, the proposal has been rejected by half a dozen major UK publishers, so it’s probably time to try the minor ones... or to look at self-publishing. The trouble is there’s not much market for light verse. (Or so I hear from the OEDILF forums.)

Added by Rory on 2 August 2005.

I look forward to the self-published anthology, if it comes to that. May I suggest a title? If not for that poetry, it must serve as the title of something. Heck, I'm tempted to nick it myself, and whatever it ends up being the title for will have to quote 'Our Friend the Vulture' in the introduction.

The title?

"A ghastly bobbing noggin thing".

That, my friend, is poetry!

Added by Dom on 21 August 2005.