Sir Dodo has been left out in the cold
for shameless years that I care not to count:
adorning displays in the Natural History Museum;
shafted, stuffed and shelved upon a mount:
Come in, Sir Dodo, come out of the cold,
the time of feasting is upon us, just
as once we feasted upon you
this table’s yours and you may feast on us.
We’ll sit him at the head of the high table,
plump up his feathers, place a shining crown
above his beak, and we’ll not speak a word,
but bow our heads in reverence, and wait
for his bird-voice to call us out, (to roast
us if you will,) and chuckle, one and all
until there comes his raucous cackle-cry:
‘Fools! Fools and dissemblers, every one!
I was a guinea-pig in your program,
of systematic extinction, but you
have made progress in this beyond your dreams
1/6, you say? 1/6 of all species?
I’m nothing special, then: But you? Just look
how proudly you surmount all creation
until a virus brings you to your knees
and you resemble my friend the ostrich
head in the sand, repeating your mantra:
“If we just close our eyes and count to ten
our problems will be gone by ’21“
you’re fond and foolish, I, Lord of Misrule:
Crown this a glorious feast of earthly fools!’
© Experimentsinfiction 2020, All Rights Reserved
Written for Earthweal’s Weekly Challenge
In this week’s challenge, ‘A Feast of Earth Fools,’ Brendan has given us the following brief:
For this challenge, invite your dead to the feast. Stage your own masque. Appoint a Lord of Misrule—a climate migrant, say, one of society’s lowlies. Quest for a Green Chapel and exchange heads with a Green Knight. Visit Saturn (or Dionysos or Odin or Father Christmas) in his Otherworldly abode and describe the thing you have brought back — sword or cauldron, squashes from the garden of Priapus or fanny-pack of Aphrodite Kallipygos...
So transform! Mix your human essence with another living entity, be it frog or palm or eel: Sing as frog-man, palm-woman, eel-king. Bring an extinct species back for a seat at the banquet. Make them “thick” with life.
I have tried to do justice to this challenge by resurrecting the Dodo.