Poems by Colin Ian Jeffery

“Lion Tamer”
             By Colin Ian Jeffery

Great Lionel was a lion tamer, bold and true
Star of circus, daredevil of the sawdust ring
His bravery second to none, hero renowned.
Introduced by ringmaster, he stepped into the ring
Wearing red satin tights, vest, and black boots.
Cracking whip, pistol on hip, haughty and proud
Entered the cage with a contemptuous grin
Facing three lions and a grumpy old lioness.
Audience cheered and Great Lionel waved
Cracked whip, and three lions obeyed
Leaping onto barrels they sat quiet and still
But lioness refused, sullen and hungry
And wanting her dinner ate Great Lionel
Leaving only his whip and black leather boots.

“Mountain Gorilla”
             By Colin Ian Jeffery

Gentle giant of the great apes
Close to humans in spirit and nature
Same sympathy with love of family
Mighty vegetarian walking the Congo
Hunted and endangered.

Massive silver-backed male
Father and protector
Too heavy to sleep up in the trees
Sleeps on the jungle floor
While family sleeps above.

Babies clinging to mothers’ backs
Carried through the jungle
With silver-back on lookout for danger
Leading his family group of nine
Moving furtively from place to place.

Villagers of the Congo
Hunt and kill gorillas for meat
Trading skins on the black market
While hunters kidnap the young
Selling them to zoos for display.

Days of the gorilla are numbered
Soon only found caged in zoos
Gentle giants forever captive
Paraded for entertainment
Cousins of humans and jailed in misery

“Death of a Sperm Whale”
             By Colin Ian Jeffery

With her calf she dives
Into the darkness a mile below the waves
Where great squid abides
Ferocious Goliath monarch of oceans deep.

Singing lilting lullaby to her calf
In darkness she swims in playful mood
And for an hour remains down in the deep
Swimming side by side with her son.

Largest of toothed whales
The sperm whale comes to the surface
Spouting water through her blowhole
Smacking her great tail upon the waves.

Japanese harpooner takes aim
Deadly bolt plunges home
Explosive charge detonates
Mortally wounded she calls to her calf.

Hauled up dying by her tail
Against the side of the whaling ship
In agony she dangles with head in the sea
Bleeding slowly to death.

Her calf calls out in anguish
Following the ship for hours
But there is no lilting answering lullaby
Only blood in the water.

- Colin Ian Jeffery is an established English poet and novelist with world-wide reputation; his books can be purchased from Amazon and all good bookshops. He was seven, a choirboy, when he became entranced by poetry after hearing the twenty-third psalm. The beauty of the words struck his soul like lightning and his Muse began to sing. He then found poetry was being read on the BBC radio Home Service and would listen in awe and delight to such poets as Dylan Thomas, John Betjeman, and Ted Hughes.

Copyright©2022 by Colin Ian Jeffery. All Rights Reserved.