One Poem by Jeffrey Kingman

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Mr. Elephant

                            Let’s try replacing the ears—
large flaps are prohibitive.
               Lizard-ears allow
nonstop listening:

pencil scratch   earrings jangle   baby smacking mouthfuls
It’s pleasant listening   all kinds.
                            Yes, we could give Elephant lizard-ears.

We could tell him what to do.
                                                         Clair de Lune.
Elephant, listen to Clair de Lune—it’s lovely!
               Will Elephant like music?
                            We don’t know.

The trunk, how about the trunk.
               Huge brown eye, thoughtful (scheming?) Restless,
                            he rocks back and forth back and forth
               for ages.
OK, we’ll let him have his trunk.

It’s hot in the sun—
                            can he fan himself with music?
He doesn’t know—doesn’t appreciate his new ears.

Why all the rocking? Stand still.
               Leaving now, caravan style.
                            Just the one elephant, lumbering amidst us.
               He won’t if he doesn’t eat.


Look, sweetie. See the elephant?
What does Elephant say?
Not moo, not shkree.

Little boy says
                            love you

Elephant says





Jeffrey Kingman lives by the Napa River in Vallejo, California. He is the winner of the 2012 Revolution House Flash Fiction Contest and a semifinalist in the 2013 Frost Place Chapbook Fellowship. His novel, Moto Girl, is about a 12-year-old girl learning to ride motocross.

Multicolored elephant image courtesy Shutterstock. is the world’s first online journal of place, publishing a rich mix of literature, artwork, case studies, and more since 1997.