Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

VAN AMBURGH'S MENAGERIE, by                    
First Line: Van amburgh is the man that goes with all the shows
Last Line: Those ladies giving those monkeys nuts will injure their constitution


VAN AMBURGH is the man that goes with all the shows;
He goes into the lion's den, and shows you all he knows;
He sticks his head in the lion's mouth, and keeps it there awhile,
And when he takes it out again, he greets you with a smile.

Chorus:

For the elephant now goes round, the band begins to play,
Those boys around the monkeys' cage, they'd better keep away.

This is the Arctic polar bear, oft called the iceberg's daughter,
Been known to eat three tubs of ice, then call for soda water;
She wades in the water up to her knees, not fearing any harm;
You may growl and grumble as much as you please, but she don't care a darn.

Next comes baboon Emmeline, catching flies and scratching her head,
Weeping and wailing all the day, because her husband's dead;
Poor weeping, wailing water lily, of all her friends bereft,
That monkey is thumbing his nose at her with his right paw over his left.

Next comes the anaconda boa constrictor, called the anaconda for brevity;
He can swallow an elephant as well as a toad, and is noted for his great longevity,
Can swallow himself, crawl through himself, come out with great facility,
Tie himself into a bowknot, snap his tail, and wink with great agility.

That hyena in the next cage, most wonderful to relate,
Got awful hungry the other night, and ate up his female mate;
Now, don't go near his cage, he'll hurt you, little boys,
For when he's mad he'll growl and bite, and make a horrible noise. Gr-rr-r ----

Next comes the condor, an awful bird, from the highest mountain tops:
Been known to eat up little boys and then to smack his chops;
This performance can't go on -- there's too much noise and confusion;
Those ladies giving those monkeys nuts will injure their constitution.





Discover our Poem Explanations and Poet Analyses!


Other Poems of Interest...



Home: PoetryExplorer.net