Jackanapes: the missing link
The moon is here, the sun is there
without man’s help to make them flare.
The earth seems stalled between the two
plagued by forces, held by glue.
Bathed in liquid from dense cloud
the Big Bang must have sounded loud –
expanding space and galaxies
explained by man-made fallacies.
A spark of life, the simplest form
began its journey like a worm
and morphed into a complex shape
with fingers, toes – the Jackanapes.
Admittedly it took some time
before the ape-man stopped his climb
and matched perfection – God said good
and made him fit for Hollywood.
Man sold his honour for a song
and was rewarded with a gong.
With cautious stealth, this man named Duke
set off from Suffolk and it took
some time to find a fitting wife
provoking intense Gallic strife.
Where will our bold suitor find
the perfect girl to blow his mind?
Evolution’s pace was somewhat slow
the bar it set was far too low
to grant the Duke his wished-for pearl
a kind of grownup, geisha girl.
If pomp precedes his journey’s goal
how could a frugal begging bowl
bear him safe through perilous turf
in search of that which gave him birth?
Without heir to his estate
the ticking clock prescribed his fate.
A lonely heart ripped through its cage
and left him in a frightful rage.
He tore a rib from his broad chest
and endured this stringent test.
As he plucked his manly bone
a being from an unknown zone
picked it up and gave it flesh,
shaped an interlocking mesh.
With hips and breasts to help him go
he fertilised an embryo.
At birth the child was thought insane
no wonder they just called him Cain –
when, if truth be told, instead
they should’ve named him knucklehead.
Adam was smart, he knew his tables
multiplied, Eve brought forth Abel.
Seth was next, his mother knew
a fig leaf might protect him too
from his murderous brother, Cain
whose name made history, to their shame.
To purge the realm of sour grapes
Adam, also known as Jackanapes
persuaded Eve to populate
the whole earth with good-looking dates.
He adored Eve’s plump nakedness
abjured his own, which caused much stress.
Regrettably the butcher’s knife
evolved to cause much greater strife.
Before too long, there were great wars,
some a hundred years, some more.
The history books were drenched with blood
and that begat a cleansing flood.
So should you ask an ape or two
at Madame Taussaud’s or the zoo
how man and woman came to be
(and solve this ancient mystery)
don’t ever be surprised to learn
that melting wax could cause a burn
and man cannot unlock the gate –
much less undo his wicked state.
Poet's Notes about The Poem
chained ape. Matchmaker and lackey to Henry VI, the Duke is believed to have played a significant role in the on-again, off-again Hundred Years’ War.
Comments about this poem (Jackanapes: the missing link by Julian De Wette )
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