Heads or Tails
Play or battle?
both have scales
and cold blood
More things in common
So it is with the game of war
played out across the globe
The US, the big fat crocodile
Everyone else worldwide
viewed by our military leaders as
slippery, needlekiller snakes
Croc’s jaws are mighty,
but venom has its own power
© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
Mama Zen’s Words Count prompt at Imaginary Garden With Real Toads gave us several gorgeous scientific images by Maria Sibylla Merian. I chose this because I could not ignore the balance of this drawing; and yet, there’s also an imbalance. So size “matters,” but the lithe serpent has fangs. This could go either way. The huge, well-fed croc (America) seems to have control over the snake (pick a country), but will that be the end? Or shall the snake morph into Medusa, exacting her own revenge… or quagmire? As a tiny scale on that croc, I wish I had some sway, some say, over who the hell is grinding our military jaws in MY name. Both let go, everybody wins. Aren’t we above animal games?
NOTES ON ILLUSTRATOR: Ms. Merian was a woman ahead of her time. She traveled (with her daughter and – GASP! – no male guardian) in 1699 to South America to illustrate wildlife. Click on the “Toads” link to see more of her artwork, which is all public domain. The name of her insect collection, published in 1705, is Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium; however, this is obviously from another collection.
Also posted at my snake-free swamp (in the very best M*A*S*H sense of the word), Poets United. Peace, Amy
April 9, 2013 at 2:05 pm
meet the new wars, same as the old wars…
Sharp Little Pencil
April 12, 2013 at 11:03 am
April 9, 2013 at 2:13 pm
I love your take on the image, and I couldn’t agree with you more!
April 9, 2013 at 2:58 pm
The stale mate of super-powers is well-depicted in both illustration and your words.
Emma llm calling
April 9, 2013 at 3:28 pm
April 9, 2013 at 6:21 pm
Your second and third portions!! Phew…so apt and so chillingly true, Amy!!
Well done…I love that image, too…I chose a different one after pondering that one though.
Smiles and hugs to you!
April 9, 2013 at 6:34 pm
Love the imagery here, Amy. One might call it ‘snappy’ heh-heh (soz, couldn’t resist) 😀
April 9, 2013 at 6:55 pm
Venom does, indeed, have its own power. Lethal.
April 9, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Animal games…I think there’s another poem there!
I saw a bumper sticker that said “Listen to women…for a change.” This made me think of it. Haven’t we had enough of men stamping the ground and snorting at each other?
Kay, Alberta, Canada
April 9, 2013 at 7:36 pm
Brilliant, Amy. Great response to the symbolism of two coldblooded animals, one definitely dangerous, one possibly dangerous, or just perceived dangerous.
April 9, 2013 at 8:41 pm
I’ll take Americas supposed “evil” over our opponents “innocence” any day. But yes, I wish war on both sides would just end. But I don’t see the “snakes” slithering away.
Nice job with the poem. It got a reaction from me :).
April 9, 2013 at 9:14 pm
Great interpretation of the picture, Amy.
April 10, 2013 at 1:40 pm
This is taking it to a whole new level of analogy. Great thought process and great writing!!!
April 10, 2013 at 4:10 pm
Amy, incredible art and great words to go with it! Over here in FL, we do have snakes that overcome Crocs/Alligators, Big Pythons (that some idiots released into the wild when they got too big to have as pets…) On a scale of 1-10, you get a 10! 🙂