Ode to the Turkey

The Eagle and the Nightingale
Both once went on a spree
By boasting to the Turkey they
Were better birds than he.

“I am the Sovereign of the Sky,”
The Eagle screamed. “However,
You waddle gormless on the ground.
Frankly, you’re hardly clever.”

The Nightingale trilled, “I’m the Poet’s
Muse, but as for you –
A tuneless gobble is the most,
Poor Turkey, you can do.”

The Turkey listened civilly
And then he made reply :
“You’re right, of course, dear colleagues. But
A different role play I.

“When Holidays come round and folk
Forgather East or West,
They serve ME up : I’m centre stage
As their most honoured guest.

“And they remember afterwards
What a good meal they had :
So succulent ! They smack their lips
In pleasure and are glad

“To thank their friendly Turkey. Therefore,
Birds, don’t be curmudgeons :
Tell hungry humans the best Turkeys
Flock to Thornton’s Budgens !”

Robert Ilson,
Poet Laureate