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Tuesday 30 April 2013

NaPoWriMo - Day 30 - Le Hibou et la Chatte

Well, today is the last day!  When I started this challenge, I never for a moment imagined that I would finish it.  But I've had great fun along the way - not least because of all the support and encouragement I've had from those of you, here and on Facebook, who've taken the time and trouble to make this journey with me.  To all of you I say: Thank you all so very much. I think we've all earned a very large drink!

And I now have thirty more poems than I had a month ago.  Well, twenty-nine, actually, as this final one is a poem which I wrote this time last year, when I did NaPo "unofficially" and just posted my random scribblings in a dedicated Facebook group.  But it seemed to fit in rather well with yesterday's prompt, which was to write a poem which contained "at least five words" in a foreign language.  Well, I think I might have achieved that, by the skin of my teeth.

My first day's poem was on the front of the fridge.  My last day's poem is completely off the wall...


(dédié à Édouard Lear, à qui je présente mes sincères condoléances)*

Dans un beau bâteau vert, ils s’en vont à la mer,
la grande chatte et le petit hibou.
Afin qu’ils ne manquent, dans un billet de banque
ils ont pris du miel et des sous.
Le hibou prit sa mandoline
et chanta vers le ciel:
“Ah! Ma chatte!  Ma bien-aimée,
ma chatte, que tu es belle!”

Dit la chatte au hibou: “Mon petit chou-chou,
tu chantes d’un façon si beau.
Ce serait très doux de te prendre comme époux,
mais qu’est-ce qui’il faut faire pour l’anneau?”
Le bâteau voyage et se trouve à la plage
de la belle île de l’arbre bongué,
où ils rencontrent au bois un grand cochon noir
qui portait un anneau au nez.

“Monsieur le Cochon, désirez-vous ven-
dre votr’ anneau?”  Le cochon dit “Ouai”.
Ils s’épousent lendemain, conjugés par la main
du grand dinde qui habitait les prés.
Ils mangent d’la viande, et des morceaux d’amandes,
se servant d’une cuillière roncibelle,
et puis ils dansaient sur la plage dorée
comme la lune brillait forte au ciel.

(* dedicated to Edward Lear, to whom profuse apologies are offered by the writer)

The original work on which this travesty is based can be found here.


  1. Bravo! As much as I am able to ascertain, that's a great translation, and a fitting end to your month of poems.

    1. Thanks Miriam! I had to take a couple of liberties in places (a hill became a meadow, quince became almonds, and the pig became Parisian!). Whether or not any native French speakers agree with it remains to be seen, but it was fun to try!