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Poems from Francis Kerr Young
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The West Virginia Poetry Society issues a seasonal newsletter called Poets’ Crossroads to its members. Part of the letterhead has a owl wearing mortorboad to symbolize wisdom. On the back page, Editor Betty Grugin, assumes the guise of a cartoon character called Bartholomew the bookworm who works diligently to collect newsworthy paraphernalia to keep WVPS members current in poetical events. This poet gave these creatures some of our less-than-valued human traits . . .

BACK TO FRONT
-a Francois Villon ballade

Observe yon owl on cover page,
so worldly wise and absolute,
he drives bookworms to jealous rage -
to them, there's cause for some dispute:
what knowledge makes him so astute?
How dare he flaunt this myth on you,
for owls are anything but cute
(according to Bartholomew)!

Regard yon mortarboarded sage!
with saucer eyes and hook-tipped snoot,
he glowers down in deep, red rage
at us bookworms as we commute
from word to word, black-inked to boot!
We're food for thought (to him that's new)
for that carnivorous galoot
(according to Bartholomew)!

Perceive this rivalry they wage,
two cartooned clowns who look argute:
A worm that thrives on verbiage;
an owl that basks in Man's tribute.
Are they icons without refute?
But here's another worm's eye view,
"Intelligence in owls is moot!"
(according to Bartholomew!)

                         l’envoi

Nocturnal trysts - a sound pursuit
for courting owls, to wit: To woo!
But as for owls who gives a hoot?
(according to Bartholomew!)


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