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The Wallaby

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







back to Poems for Children

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