“The Phalarope” by Marque Dobrow

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The phalarope is a small shorebird which belongs to the sandpiper family. They are known for their distinctive nesting behaviour, and their unique feeding technique. The males and females do not fulfil typical gender roles.





The Phalarope


Have you heard of the phalarope bird?

Now I give you my word ~ its name isn’t absurd.

In terms of physique it couldn’t be slimmer

Which helps to make it an excellent swimmer.

Their feathers are most often black, red and white,

Then they’re grey in the winter: what a wondrous sight.


Within the Arctic region they breed

Where you’d think it too cold to perform such a deed.

In the Northern Hemisphere they lay eggs, then later

Spend their winters the other side of the equator.


Female phalaropes will court with their mate

Who in turn builds a nest so he may incubate.

The she-bird is larger in size than her fella,

So if she gained weight, I doubt he would tell her.

But here’s a grand fact that I think is worth hearing:

It’s the male who does the young phalarope-rearing.


And so, as these verses are nearing their end

Please consider the phalarope your friend.

If ever you see one from the ground down below

Keep your eyes gazing skyward and call out “hello”.


“Falling Leaves” by Marque Dobrow

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When the autumn months are calling,

Leaves from up on high are falling.

Landing softly on the ground

Without a shudder or a sound.

But if I were a bug or bee

And if a leaf should land on me

Would I be hurt, or in a pickle?

Or would that leaf provide a tickle?

Through March and April and into May

Leaves are falling by the day.

Mother Nature’s voice has called,

The trees seem to be going bald.

In my backyard beneath the sky

Leaves of many colours lie.

Maple leaves and sycamores;

Gum leaves too: there’s leaves galore.

While the soil is far from hardened

I rake some leaves onto my garden,

Making many a compost heap,

Where all the worms and snails sleep.

So if you’re rolling up your sleeves

Please admire the falling leaves.

Pick one up from off the clover:

Go on and turn a new leaf over.

“Marathon” by Marque Dobrow

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The both of us, behind the door,

Me in my room, you in yours.

Firmer grows our friendship true

As from my bed I wave to you.

You see me from across the fence:

Our isolation consequence.

“Lockdown” is the word we hear,

Yet in your face I see no fear.

I’m looking forward to the day

When once again we both will play

Underneath the Southern sky,

No longer needing to ask why.

Staying safe with family,

Behind the doors it’s you and me.

And when tomorrow seems so long,

Your smile once more will keep me strong.

“Mongoose” by Marque Dobrow

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Oh mighty mongoose, your courage I admire:

To write of your deeds I never would tire.

A short-legged creature with a coarse-haired body,

Your coordination is not at all shoddy.


A fierce little warrior who lives in a burrow

You attack your prey as if there’s no tomorrow.

When dealing with rats and birds you are fearless,

And your snake-striking skills make you utterly peerless.


With the means to out-manoeuvre a cobra

It would be a fool who attempted to rob ya.

With reflexes as fast as any rocket

I never would dare to pick your pocket.


Your claws and teeth could de-value my denim;

And you’re never concerned with anti-venom.

But if I sat still and did not provoke you

Would you sit on my lap and allow me to stroke you?


Dear mongoose, from afar you have earned my respect.

I shall praise you and never show any neglect.

For a soul who tangles with snakes oh so avidly,

It’s all just as well you reproduce rapidly.

“Hand in hand” by Marques Dobrow

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Washing hands is very wise

Before you eat, or rub your eyes.

A smart way to avoid infection

Without the need for sharp injections.


Put warm water in the sink;

The use of soap is wise, I think.

Bid those germs “Auf wiedersehen

As you wash them down the drain.


Underneath your fingernails

Is often where the dirt prevails.

In between your fingers too

Must be cleaned of gunk and goo.


Make the effort, take your time

To cleanse yourself of grease and grime.

When the time to stop commands,

Grab a towel and dry your hands.


Washing hands: it won’t take long;

It keeps you healthy, safe and strong.

If this task you’re undertaking,

It’s your hand I shall be shaking.

“Can you guess?” by Marque


Can You Guess?


Can you guess of whom I speak?

He has no claws and he has no beak.

No fangs nor feathers nor fleece nor fur.

And he won’t get upset if you don’t call him sir.


Whilst not renowned for being a mobster,

He crushes and eats many a lobster.

You’d probably part with your hard earned dollar

If I told you his body can change its colour.


In the encyclopedia me finds

There are over fifty different kinds.

Though not much bigger than your fist,

Don’t cross him off your friendship list.


The smartest of all invertebrates,

I proudly class him as one of my mates.

His legs aren’t long, but they number eight.

I think this creature something great.


I tell you of the octopus,

Who lives his life with minimal fuss.

Should one of his legs be gone without trace,

Another one grows back in its place.


Why do I like the octopus so?

He’s resourceful and quiet and not too slow.

But I think it’s his kindness which sets him apart.

I guess I’d be the same if I had three hearts.

“X-Ray” by Marque Dobrow

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X-ray, X-ray, what do you see?

X-ray looking right through me.

Does it mean you see the truth?

More than simply bone and tooth?


X-ray, am I looking fine?

Or am I somewhat in decline?

X-ray, tell me, what’s the news?

Expound to me your point of view.


My body says I’m in good health.

My bank says likewise of my wealth.

X-ray please don’t spoil my day.

Tell me what you see I pray.


I hope you are in gentle mood.

Please reveal something good.

Show to me your photograph,

Allow me now the final laugh.


X-ray, what is this I see?

Can this be the real me?

For lurking deep beneath my skin,

You show, there lies, a skeleton.


“The Sloth is Happy” by Marque Dobrow

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The Sloth is Happy

How happy is the sloth:

There is not a soul so idle.

To see him casually hang from branch

You’d think him suicidal.

How peaceful is the sloth,

His manner so content.

One tree remains his lifelong home;

For which he pays no rent.

How joyous is the sloth,

For he doesn’t have a job.

Within one tree he sleeps and eats;

The social life he snob.

The sloth remains my friend and pal,

A delightful, harmless mammal.

He has no need for a turtle’s shell,

Or the long legs of a camel.

Forever walking upside down

My sloth, you look exquisite.

If of your tree you ever tire,

I hope you’ll come and visit.

“Walnut Brittle” by Marque Dobrow

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If you go to the Milk Bar today,

You might find something in your way.

With chocolate topping in your eyes

You’re bound to get a big surprise.

Whipped cream dripping from your fingers,

Something in there lurks and lingers.

You’d better take your dad and mum,

Because you’re far too little

To handle the walnut brittle.


It’s going to get in through your ears.

It’s going to open up your fears.

When you’re hiding under the bed,

You’ll feel the pain inside your head.

The cavities will bring you down,

Because you’re far too little

To handle the walnut brittle.


Now quickly lock your bedroom door.

Your teeth will drop out on the floor.

You’ll feel the pain from all the honey;

You can’t afford it: got no money.

Take my advice and stay at home,

Because you’re far too little

To handle the walnut brittle.