James Norcliffe

yet another poem about a giraffe

pity the poor giraffe
lost on the frozen steppe

his wishbone legs
make pipe-holes in the snow

the stunted furze
laughs at his reaching neck

for Africa is
sixty degrees below

the hoarfrost catches
in his soulful lashes

his brown eyes lost
beneath the arctic moon

his blotched hide a map
of hopeless wishes

the swishing tail
a pendulum of doom

so he stands withstands
the bitter polar blast

that rips the fluttering
pages of his dreams

the flickering pixels
of a brilliant past

when the world was warm
and still and green

Author’s Note


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