by Ruth S. Baker
“New Zealand zoos strive to entertain lonely inhabitants amid lockdown…
Rhinos keep turning up for their belly rubs, and giraffes have been keeping their [“meet the public”] appointments, but there is no one to watch them”
The public, scared by virus-graphs,
Stay home and watch their tellies;
Who then can meet the poor giraffes,
Or rub the rhinos’ bellies?
Activities are all indoor
Throughout the nervous nation;
Meanwhile the beasts are pining for
Some human conversation.
The keepers now are on their own
(In line with Health Compliance):
They walk the llamas, spray cologne
To stimulate the lions,
Set puzzles for the kea birds,
Pay visits to the otters,
And shunt around the dairy herds;
And yet morale still totters.
The lonely meerkat mopes, morose;
The dingo’s all downhearted;
Gorillas, glad? Not even close.
The snakes? Don’t get me started.
What panzootic glumness this
All these amazing species miss
Our own amazing species.