Poems of the Week

A Panda Turns One

by Mike Mesterton-Gibbons

A year ago, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian’s trysts
Produced a little miracle: a son—
According to esteemed zoologists,
Not one percent of such old couples’ fun
Delivers baby giant panda bears!
At National Zoo, devoted keepers say
This cub is fond of apples and of pears,
Unhurried but creative in his play,
Remarkably observant, and astute:
Not built for muggy metro weather, he
Skedaddles for the nearest AC chute
On dog days—so he proves himself to be
No dummy! … Now it’s time to join DC,
Exclaiming: Happy Birthday, Xiao Qi Ji!