All Creatures Great and Small

Let’s start out with the insects
most considered ‘creepy’
Some have shells or wings
but none of them are sleepy


Ant’s among the smallest
and live in colonies
They hunt in massive numbers
and go just where they please


They’re tiny but they’re powerful
their species surely thrive
Killing living things
is how they stay alive


A splash into the ocean
or rivers and stream beds
Here you’ll find some creatures
with gills behind their heads


Octopus to Salmon
Lobster, Killer Whale
Some of these have tentacles
others, fins and tail


It matters not if thinking
about the Great White Shark
or how the Glow-fish hunts
deep down in the dark


From Krill, the tiny plankton
swallowed by Blue Whale
To the stunning Angel fish
multi-coloured fins and tail


Large will hunt the smaller
it’s how they all survive
Most of them are predators
they catch things still alive


In the sky we’ll look now
there we’ll see some thrillers
We have some ‘passive’ species
but plenty ‘active’ killers


Swallows, Swifts and Martins
eat and fly along
Check out a wood in morning
if you want to hear ‘birdsong’


Robin, Thrush and Blackbird
bring us back to ‘bugs’
They eat worms and beetles
and some of them eat slugs


Vultures live on carrion
so glide along on breezes
It’s only when they see a corpse
that their hunger eases


Eagles, Falcons, Owls
these all hunt with zeal
Flying fast or soaring high
till they spot their meal


Arriving at four legs
the land based hunting mammals
Think ‘Big Cats’, and Wolves
not Elephants or Camels


Leopards hunt in darkness
catch Monkeys if they can
Their normal prey stands upright
when desperate, they’ll kill man


Hyena and the Wolf
both will hunt in packs
Chasing larger game
they don’t live on snacks


Polar Bears kill too
preference is for Seals
Like anything with family
they need to have big meals


Now let’s look at Man
supposedly the ‘smart’ one
He hunts with spear or net
traps, poison, rifle, gun


What then is the difference
between animals and Man
Men don’t just kill to eat
some do it ‘cause they can


Then there is that other thought
killing your own kind
Humans kill each other
many reasons we can find


Briefly, back to animals
living in the wild
They have to kill each other
it’s the way their life is styled


Is there then a message
in all this wondrous verse
Kill only when you have to
there’s no need to rehearse …



 This is a selection from Natural History: An Anthology of Poetry – Volume 3.


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