Andrew Lansdown: ‘Ocean Haiku’, ‘Of Catnip and Women’ and ‘The Chosen Whale’

Ocean Haiku

Under a blue sky
a school of salmon surfing
inside a blue wave.

Seaborne galleon
the ponderous pelican
airborne zeppelin.

Jigged from the sea
jetting ink on the jetty
the jiggered squid.

Belly-up blowfish
among the marina boats
like mini sea mines.

A hermit crab
backing into a seashell
and this haiku.

Andrew Lansdown

Of Catnip and Women


Fawning, meowing,
gawping, pawing and growling—
so astounding is
a cat’s response to catnip,
a man’s response to women!


As cats with catnip,
so men with women—gaping,
nuzzling, caressing—
anything to get relief from
the unbearable loveliness.

Andrew Lansdown


The Chosen Whale
Now the LORD provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah,
and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days
Jonah 1:17

Sonorous and oom
I roam and sound
in the strange storm …

I up and breach
and I catch him
as they toss him

squid-squirming from
the pitching float
to the wave-roil …

And the Master
bids me gulp him
down—so I must …

He is glug, ugh!
but the Voice booms
Uh-uh, don’t gag!

So I hurl up
to shake him down,
swig him with air

into my gut
and he thumps there
as I plunge back …

Then the Maker
makes me that way
go—and I go

a bit queasy
but lots happy
to oblige Him …

The swallowed one
stops his wallow
and starts lament

the muffle-sob
of his man-voice
aching my ribs

as I wallop
my way His way
through the water …

And the pod pounds
with me, and we
sing Sounding Psalms …

We bassoon as
abreast we breast
the echo deeps

ploughing a path
to the pagan
shores of Nineveh …

Andrew Lansdown

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