Friday, November 28, 2008

Serengeti Subterfuge

Fiction Friday

Fiction Friday is hosted this week by
Be sure to visit for avant-garde fiction.

Serengeti Subterfuge
by Beth LaBuff
Topic: Charade

In the darkness rife with night sounds,
‘Neath an umbrella tree,
Crouched young Paka* of the woodlands –
Serengeti sovereignty.

Paka Leopard was courageous
As he thrived upon the plain.
In Serengeti’s rank he neared
The apex of the food chain.

He hoped for an appearance,
Kept his respirations quiet,
Craved a meal that conformed to his
High protein – low-carb diet.

With the tardiness of dinner
And scratching of the bramble.
His thoughts began to wonder
While his brain began to scramble.

Paka had a revelation,
“My spots are so cliché,
I’ll change my spots, expunge them
To blend in among my prey!”

He borrowed spot remover
From a clean safari guest,
Who’d hoped to spot a spotted cat
While spotless on his quest.

With spots obliterated,
Spotless Paka formed a plan,
To mingle with the monkeys
And blend in among their clan.

In order to pull off this hoax
He learned some monkey antics
Like eating ripe bananas
And monkey speech semantics.

With just a smidge of exercise,
Plus a scoop of guile,
He practiced swinging from the trees
His tail — faux prehensile.

The whole charade was scrutinized
By a watchful gnu,
Who faithfully transcribed it
From his hidden gnu’s eye view.

The gnu was an informer
To the Brotherhood of Apes,
Who voiced their stern distaste on
How events had taken shape.

The monkeys weren’t bamboozled
By Paka Leopard’s cheating.
They called each head of household to a
Monkey business meeting.

The Brotherhood of Apes
Then posted union views,
Saying “Leopards can’t be monkeys
‘Cause they pay no union dues.”

And with the union’s statement
That was posted in a hurry,
No hakuna with matata
Made Paka start to worry.

To reverse a spot remover
Became his chief concern.
And all the wishful thinking
Wouldn’t make the spots return.

Accounting of this tall charade
Might be a bit askew.
We asked around before we found
Just what the old gnu knew.

It seemed that Paka Leopard
Then simmered in a stew,
Till he found a place that could replace
His spots with ink tattoos.

*Swahili for cat

Inspiration from:
Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots?
Jeremiah 13:23 (NIV)

written for a writing challenge
© Beth LaBuff -- August 2008


Hoomi said...

Once again, I just love your command of meter and rhyme. It flows exceptionally well, and would be a delight to read aloud.

"Monkey union dues"; I'm still chuckling over that line, having worked in a Union shop for nearly 30 years.

Patty Wysong said...

Waa! I missed this one, Beffy! I'm sorry!

I hadn't read this before and I love it! Spot remover and tatooed spots!! Oh, you're too clever! ROFL. Just love it!