Mike Gallagher is an Irish writer and editor. His prose, poetry, haiku and songs have been published worldwide. His writing has been translated into Croatian, Japanese, Dutch, German, Italian and Chinese He won the Michael Hartnett Viva Voce competition in 2010 and 2016, was shortlisted for the Hennessy Award in 2011 and won the Desmond O'Grady International Poetry Contest in 2012. His collection Stick on Stone is published by Revival Press.
Birth of a Naturalist
Rambling out on Thade Cud’s road
one bright and early morning,
the strangest noise rolled down the hill,
it came without a warning.
Revving bikes beyond the bog,
or cats discordant purring?
'Twas hard to tell, to tell at all,
what really was occurring.
Fresh amateur naturalist
mused on this sound so soaring:
would a pride of lions proud
to our bogland go snoring?
So on he climbed up Thade Cud's hill,
his mad thoughts still provoking,
until he came upon the source
of that awful, awful croaking.
Crammed in a boghole, dim and dark,
amid the mud and slobber,
had gathered all the local frogs
dressed in their mottled clobber.
There in bubbled water seething,
skinny-dipping and embroiled,
cold amphibians were enraptured,
arms and legs now intercoiled.
This righteous man, three score and ten,
thought such lewd behaviour shocking,
all that brazen, wanton sex,
all this shameless interlocking.
Spotted anon by bouncer frog,
disgruntled at his gawping,
sent the raucous revellers
He moved in near to see more clear,
reined in his rampant corgi;
said bullfrog: No sir, come no closer,
this is a private orgy.