The Bellman’s Speech

The Bellman’s Speech
—for Lewis Carroll

The Bellman bought a large map for the voyage—
Showing the vast unfathonable Sea of Snarke

And the crew were overjoyed when they found—
A map that they could finally understand

It was completely blank with no conventional signs—
No North Poles, Equators, Tropics, Zones or Lines

Other maps had islands, seas and oceans but—
The Bellman’s map was perfectly absolutely blank!!!

The Bellman was charming beyond a doubt—
But all he really wanted to do was tinkle his bell

He was thoughtful & gay but there came a day—
When steering starboard meant hiding in the closet

Rudders twisted & flummoxed in the fo’c’sle—
And their great sailing ship getting totally lost

Perplexed & distressed they traveled due West—
Arriving dismayed with their bags & portmanteaus

On an island of mostly craggy chasms & crags—
Guzzling grog as the Bellman made his speech:

“Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears!
We have sailed many months, sailed many weeks

And yet we haven’t caught a glimpse of the Snarke—
Not even a wink or a gimp or a good gander!!!!

What are the unspeakable traits of the Snarke—
Let me count the ways of this Will-o’-the-wisp

The Snarke sleeps in late at least until noon & then—
Takes his time having a morning martini to mend

Usually badly hung-over and slow to jest—
The Snarke hates puns & sighs at parodies

He likes slot-machines & Las Vegas gambling—
Likes to shoot craps with Boojum gangsters

Snarkes have feathers & often fly quite high—
They’ve even got wings & fart up in the sky

Snarkes do all manner of mischief & harm—
That’s why the word Snarke causes such alarm

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