"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes, and ships, and sealing wax -
Of cabbages and kings,
And why the sea is boiling hot,
And whether pigs have wings."

"Pigs with wings," the Walrus said,
"Now there's a clever thought,
I s'pose there might be some around,
But none have yet been caught,
And seeing as they fly about,
I think I know why not.

"Men hunt the flying pigs with bows,
With harpoon, spear and net,
But porcine flight eludes them still,
For none have caught them yet,
Save this one roast upon our plates,
Which I took for a bet."

The Carpenter just helped himself,
To roast pork swiftly speared,
Its juices running clear and hot,
Its crackling crisply seared,
He heaped some bacon on the top,
His cheeks a-stream with tears.

"Such tasty things," he said at length,
"So succulent and sweet,
So nimble on their little wings,
So clumsy on their feet,"
And then set to with knife and fork,
His plate of pork to eat.

"Pigs love to fly," the Walrus sighed,
"To eat their swill they swoop,
Wondrous to see the Tamworth pig,
When it flies loopy-loop,
While Berkshires soar formation style,
In small well-ordered groups.

The sows with piglets in their wake,
I love to watch them soar;
Imperious in his kite-like grace,
Is the majestic boar,"
The Walrus surveyed his empty plate,
And helped himself to more.

He heaped his platter hot and high,
With gammon, ham and bacon,
"To think they flock like garden birds,
A hundred for the taking,"
Then chewed upon that thought awhile,
His jowls and whiskers shaking.

"Now when they say 'upon the hoof,'
They mean upon the wing,"
His friend, too, speared another slice,
"And have you heard them sing?
As sweet as larks or nightingales,
Their porcine voices ring -

But when earthbound they grunt and oink,
And wallow in the slime,
We call them dirty, greedy pigs,
Just filthy common swine,
But on the wing they soar and glide,
And roll and stoop and climb."

"Such nimble things," Walrus concurred,
And took a bite of ham,
"They frisk among the fluffy clouds
And gambol like the lamb,"
He wiped the juices from his chin,
"But clumsy when they land.

Sometimes they fly too near the sun,
Bedazzled by its light,
Called to it by the golden rays,"
The Walrus sadly sighed,
"Then in a shower of crackling fall,
The piggies end their flight

"The evidence," he said at length,
"Is there upon your plate,"
The Carpenter just shook his head,
And said, "Alas - too late,
That slice of wing with applesauce -
I fear your proof I ate."

"Pigs with wings," the Walrus said,
"It was a tasty thought,
Mayhap there still are some around,
To lure with applesauce,
And we now know they taste as sweet,
As common earth-bound pork."

A parody of Lewis Carroll's poem. Copyright Sarah Hartwell


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