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Title: Animal Analogues: Verses and Illustrations

Author: Robert Williams Wood

Release date: June 22, 2013 [eBook #43013]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Melissa McDaniel and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)



Verses and Illustrations

By Robert Williams Wood.
Author of "How To Tell The Birds From the Flowers."

Published by Paul Elder and Company.
San Francisco and New York.

Copyright 1908
Paul Elder and Company.


The Bee—The Beet—The Beetle. 1.
The Ant—The Pheas-ant. 2.
The Bunny—The Tunny. 3.
The Eel—The Eelephant. 4.
The Puss—The Octo-pus. 5.
The Gnu—The Newt. 6.
The Hare—The Harrier. 8.
The Pipe-fish—The Sea-gar. 9.
The Cow—The Cowry. 10.
The Doe—The Dodo. 11.
The Ray—The Raven. 12.
The Coot—The Bandicoot. 14.
The Ape—The Grape. 16.
The Elk—The Whelk. 17.
The Cross-Bill—The Sweet-William. 18.
The Pitcher-Plant—The Fly-Catcher. 19.
The Antelope—The Cantelope. 20.
The P-Cock—The Q-Cumber. 22.
The Pen-guin—The Sword-fish. 23.
The Yellow-Hammer—The Saw-fish. 24.
The Pansy—The Chim-pansy. 26.
Naught—Argonaut. 27.
Author's Add-end-'em. 28.

The Bee. The Beet. The Beetle.

Good Mr. Darwin once contended

That Beetles were from Bees descended;

And as my pictures show, I think,

The Beet must be the missing-link.

The Sugar-Beet and Honey-Bee

Supply the Beetle's pedigree:

The family is now complete,—

The Bee, the Beetle and the Beet.

The Ant. The Pheas-ant.

The Ant is known by his ant-ennae,

Where-as the pheas-ant hasn't any,

And that is why he wears, instead,

A small red cap upon his head:

Without his Fez, indeed the pheasant

Would be quite bald and quite un-Pleasant.

The Bunny. The Tunny.

The superficial naturalists have often been misled,

By failing to dis-crim-inate between the tail and head:

It really is unfortunate such carelessness prevails,

Because the Bunnies have their heads where Tunnies have their tails.

The Eel. The Eelephant.

The marked aversion which we feel,

When in the presence of the Eel,

Makes many view with consternation,

The Elephant's front ele-vation.

Such folly must be clearly due

To their peculiar point of view.

The Puss. The Octo-pus.

The Octo-pus or Cuttle-fish!

I'm sure that none of us would wish

To have him scuttle 'round the house,

Like puss, when she espies a mouse:

When you secure your house-hold pet,

Be very sure you do not get

The Octo-pus, or there may be

Dom-es-tic in-felis-ity.

The Gnu. The Newt.

The Gnu conspicuously wears

His coat of gnumerous bristling hairs,

While, as we see, the modest Newt

Of such a coat is destitute.

(I'm only telling this to you,

And it is strictly "entre gnu".)

In point of fact the Newt is nude,

And therefore he does not obtrude,

But hides in some secluded gnook,

Beneath the surface of the brook:

It's almost more than he can bear,

To slyly take his breath of air,

His need of which is absolute,

Because, you see, he is a Pneu-t.*

*This stands for air, like aero-static,

Greek—"pneumos"—air—comp-air "pneu-matic".

The Hare. The Harrier.

The Harrier, harassed by the Hare,

Presents a picture of despair;

Altho' as far as I'm concerned,

I love to see the tables turned.

The Harrier flies with all his might,

It is a harum-scare'm flight:

I'm not surprised he does not care

To meet the fierce pursuing Hare!

The Pipe-fish. The Sea-gar.

To smoke a herring is to make

A most lamentable mistake,

Particularly since there are

The Pipe-fish and the long Sea-gar:

Bear this in mind when next you wish

To smoke your after-dinner fish.

The Cow. The Cowry.

The Cowry seems to be, somehow,

A sort of mouth-piece for the Cow:

A speaking likeness one might say,

Which I've endeavored to portray.

The Doe. The Dodo.

The Doe and her peculiar double

No longer are a source of trouble,

Because the Dodo, it appears,

Has been extinct for many years.

She was too proud to disembark

With total strangers in Noah's Ark,

And we rejoice because her pride

Our Nature book has simplified.

The Ray. The Raven.

The Raven is a kind of crow,

Immortalized by Mr. Poe,

And we are often led astray

By its resemblance to the Ray;

The one which I denominate,

Is termed by fisher-men the Skate;

I much prefer the latter phrase,

There are so many kinds of Rays:

There're Rays of hope, and Rays of light.

X Rays, and Rays more re-con-dite,

Which, though of interest to Science,

With Ravens have but small alliance.

The Coot. The Bandicoot.

I do not wish to at-tri-bute

Importance to the common Coot,

Or mud-hen, whom most persons scorn,

Because she chanced to be "Earth-born".

The small Australian Bandicoots

Are said to spring from Kanga-roots,

Which roots, as you of course foresee,

Are those of their ancestral tree,

The motto of which vegetable

Is just "O possum"*(I am able).

*The Bandicoot and Kangaroo,

As well as the Opossum too,

Are relatives because all three

Belong to the same family.

The Ape. The Grape.

To see her shape
Invert the ape!

The Apes, from whom we are descended,

Hang ape-x down from trees suspended,

And since we find them in the trees,

We term them arbor-iginees.

We all have seen the monkey-shines,

Cut up by those who pluck from vines

The Grape and then subject its juices

To Baccha-nalian abuses.

The Elk. The Whelk.

A roar of welkome through the welkin

Is certain proof you'll find the Elk "in";

But if you listen to the shell,

In which the Whelk is said to dwell,

And hear a roar, beyond a doubt

It indicates the Whelk is "out".

Cross Bill. Sweet William.

No-body but an imbecile

Mistakes Sweet William for Cross Bill;

And even I can scarcely claim

The skill to make them look the same,

Which proves there's nothing in a name.

The Pitcher Plant. The Fly-Catcher.

The Pitcher Plant we may define,

The flower of the base-ball nine;

This name perhaps the plant belies,

For Pitcher Plants sometimes catch flies;

The "Fly"-Catcher we educate

To firmly stand behind the plate,

To stop, and treat with circumspection,

Whatever comes in his direction.

The Antelope. The Cantelope.

The Antelope and Cantelope

Lie side by side upon the slope,

And careless persons might, I fear,

Mistake the melon for the deer.

If you will tap the Cantelope, reposing on the ground,

It does not move, but just emits a melon-choly sound;

But should you try, however, to apply a stethoscope,

And attempt this auscultation on the antlered Antelope,

And should see an imitation of a very rapid flight,

And should say, "It is the Antelope!" I think you would be right.

The P-Cock. The Q-Cumber.

The striking similarity of this P-Q-liar pair,

No longer need en-cumber us or fill us with despair;

The P-Cock and the Q-Cumber you never need confuse.

If you pay attention to the I's and mind your P's and Q's.

The Pen-guin. The Sword-fish.

We have for many years been bored

By that old saw about the sword

And pen, and now we all rejoice,

To see how Nature made her choice:

She made, regardless of offendin',

The Sword-fish mightier than the Penguin.

The Yellow-Hammer. The Saw-Fish.

The Yellow-Hammer, or the Flicker,

More briefly "Golden-winged Wood-picker",

My drawing of which striking bird

May seem to you perhaps absurd,

You even may suspect I stole

The idea from some Totem-pole:

But when you gaze upon the Fish,

You lose all patience and say "Pish!

I don't believe you ever saw

A Saw-fish look like this, Oh Pshaw!

There certainly is some mistake,

This is a saw-did Nature fake,

In fact a perfect cata-clysm

Of fishy Yellow-journalism."

The Pansy. The Chim-pansy.

Observe how Nature's necromancies

Have clearly painted on the Pansies

These almost human counte-nances,

In yellow, blue and black nu-ances.

The face, however, seems to me

To be that of the Chimpanzee,

A fact which makes the gentle Pansy

Appeal no longer to my fancy.

Naught. Nautilus.

The Argonaut or Nautilus,

With habits quite adventurous,

A combination of a snail,

A jelly-fish and paper sail.

The parts of him that did not jell

Are packed securely in his shell.

It is not strange that when I sought

To find his double, I found naught.

Author's Add-end-'em.

If you have read my former words,

And learned to recognize the Birds,

And how to tell them from Flowers,

And know these Analogues of ours,

You never need be led astray

By Darwin, Audubon, or Gray,

Whose writings, though considered classic,

Savor some-what of the Jurassic.

Your work though is but just begun,

While mine, I'm glad to say, is done.

To you the field I now leave clear,

Upset my ink, and disappear!