Sunday, 20 September 2009

The Animal & Insect Act

The Animal & Insect Act

Finally, in order to ensure
absolute national security

they passed the Animal & Insect

Emergency Control & DisciplineAct.

Under this new Act, buffaloes

cows and goats were prohibited

from grazing in herds of

more than three.

Neither could birds flock,

nor bees swarm .....

This constituted unlawfulassembly.

As they had not obtained prior

planning permission, mud-wasp

sand swallows were issued with

summary Notices to Quit.

Theirhomes were declared subversive

extensions to private property.

Monkeys and mynahs

were warned to stop

relaying their noisy

morning orisons until an official

Broadcasting Licence was issued

by the appropriate Ministry.

Unmonitored publications &

broadcasts posed the gravestt

hreats in times of a National


Similarly, woodpeckers had

to stop tapping their morse-code

messages from coconut

tree-top to chempaka tree.

All messages were subject

to a thorough pre-scrutiny

by the relevant authorities.

Java sparrows were arrested in

droves for rumour-mongering.

Cats (suspected of conspiracy)

had to be indoors by 9 o'clock

Cicadas and crickets received

notification to turn their amp-lifiers down.

Ducks could not

quack nor turkeys gobble during

restricted hours.

Need I say,

all dogs -- alsatians,


pointers and even

little chihuahuas -- were muzzled.

In the interests of security

penguins and zebras were

ordered to discard their

non-regulation uniforms.

The deer had to surrender

their dangerous antlers.

Tigers and all carnivores

with retracted claws were

sent directly to prison

for concealing lethal weapons.

And by virtue of ArticleFour,

paragraph 2(b)sub-Subsection sixteen,

under no circumstances

were elephants allowed

to break wind between

the hours of six and six.

Their farts could easily

be interpreted as gunshot.

Might spark off a riot .....

A month after the Act

was properly gazetted

the birds and insects

started migrating south

the animals went north

and an eerie silence

handcuffed the forests.

There was now

Total Security.
I've just ben sat quietly having a cup tea and listening to Radio 4's Poetry Please programme. I had not heard this poem before nor about its composer Cecil Rajendra.