Carrollian Challenge

Your challange: write poetry like Lewis Carroll. Can we make a story?

I’ve always loved Lewis Carroll’s poetry, as mad as it probably seems even now. In the story of ‘Sylvie and Bruno’, one of the supporting characters, a gardener, has a very unusual song he sings whilst he works. For instance, a particularly eccentric verse is:

“He thought he saw a rattlesnake

That questioned him in Greek:

He looked again, and found it was

The Middle of Next Week.

“The one thing I regret,” he said,

“Is that it cannot speak!”


Just for the fun of it – and perhaps to imagine ourselves in Mr. Carroll’s shoes – I thought we might make up some more verses of the song, using the same format, about the same kinds of queer metamorphoses. Structure:

He/she though he/she saw … noun, often animal (A)

Verb/action of the subject noun [Line often starts ‘that’ but not exclusively]  colon(B)

He/she looked again, and found it was (C)

Second noun, often completely unrelated (B)

Direct speech [line often ends with ‘he/she said’ but not exclusively] (D)

Direct speech (B)


The good thing is: it doesn’t have to make much sense! My frst attempt is the next page.

The End

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