Steve Tate: A favorite poem

At the Zoo
A.A. Milne

One of my favorites is “At the Zoo” by A.A. Milne. Everything in it brings out memories of childhood and innocence, times when life was just plain fun and you were learning new things. And it avoids the silliness of Dr. Seuss while still being silly!

Steve Tate
Mayor, City of Morgan Hill


At the Zoo

There are lions and roaring tigers,
and enormous camels and things,
There are biffalo-buffalo-bisons,
and a great big bear with wings.
There’s a sort of a tiny potamus,
and a tiny nosserus too—
But I gave buns to the elephant
when I went down to the Zoo!

There are badgers and bidgers and bodgers,
and a Super-in-tendent’s House,
There are masses of goats, and a Polar,
and different kinds of mouse,
And I think there’s a sort of a something
which is called a wallaboo—
But I gave buns to the elephant
when I went down to the Zoo!

If you try to talk to the bison,
he never quite understands;
You can’t shake hands with a mingo—
he doesn’t like shaking hands.
And lions and roaring tigers
hate saying, “How do you do?” —
But I give buns to the elephant
when I go down to the Zoo!

A.A. Milne (1882-1956)

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