By Sue Cowing
I thought I saw a wallaby.
No, no, I did see a wallaby.
It’s everyone else who only thought
I imagined I saw it.
Here, I’ll draw it.
It had little dog-like ears and head.
“Then it was a dog,” my mother said.
But a dog wouldn’t have this wallaby tail
that thumped behind him down the trail.
Kai said he bet that was just a root,
but a root wouldn’t move. A root, my foot!
I really did see it, so why didn’t they
turn and look before it hopped away?
“It’s a legend,” said Dad, “and shouldn’t you wonder
how a wallaby got here from far Down Under?”
It’s obvious they don’t believe.
They tell me I’m much too naive.
I wish I could draw what I started to think
about life in the mountains with rain to drink.
A wallaby life where wild ginger blooms.
A secret life. A life without rooms.
You know, my wild little wallaby ought
to stay in the shadows and never get caught
or the whole town will see him. In the zoo.
So why don’t we keep this just between you
and me? I did see a wallaby.
from My Dog Has Flies: Poetry for Hawaii’s Kids,
BeachHouse Publishing 2005