The Feast of the Monkeys


Kansetsu Hashimoto, 1938
In days of old, So I've been told, The monkeys gave a feast. They sent out cards, With kind regards, To every bird and beast. The guests came dressed, In fashion's best, Unmindful of expense; Except the whale, Whose swallowtail, Was "soaked" for fifty cents. The guests checked wraps, Canes, hats and caps; And when that task was done, The footman he With dignitee, Announced them one by one. In Monkey Hall, The host met all, And hoped they'd feel at ease, "I scarcely can," Said the Black and Tan, "I'm busy hunting fleas." "While waiting for A score or more Of guests," the hostess said, "We'll have the Poodle Sing Yankee Doodle, A-standing on his head. And when this through, Good Parrot, you, Please show them how you swear." "Oh, dear; don't cuss," Cried the Octopus, And he walked off on his ear. The Orang-Outang A sea-song sang, About a Chimpanzee Who went abroad, In a drinking gourd, To the coast of Barberee. Where he heard one night, When the moon shone bright, A school of mermaids pick Chromatic scales From off their tails, And did it mighty slick. "All guests are here, To eat the cheer, And dinner's served, my Lord." The butler bowed; And then the crowd Rushed in with one accord. The fiddler-crab Came in a cab, And played a piece in C; While on his horn, The Unicorn Blew, You'll Remember Me. "To give a touch Of early Dutch To this great feast of feasts, I'll drink ten drops Of Holland's schnapps," Spoke out the King of Beasts. "That must taste fine," Said the Porcupine, "Did you see him smack his lip?" "I'd smack mine, too," Cried the Kangaroo, "If I didn't have the pip." The Lion stood, And said: "Be good Enough to look this way; Court Etiquette Do not forget, And mark well what I say: My royal wish Is ev'ry dish Be tasted first by me." "Here's where I smile," Said the Crocodile, And he climbed an axle-tree. The soup was brought, And quick as thought, The Lion ate it all. "You can't beat that," Exclaimed the Cat, "For monumental gall." "The soup," all cried. "Gone," Leo replied, "'Twas just a bit too thick." "When we get through," Remarked the Gnu, "I'll hit him with a brick." The Tiger stepped, Or, rather, crept, Up where the Lion sat. "O, mighty boss I'm at a loss To know where I am at. I came to-night With appetite To drink and also eat; As a Tiger grand, I now demand, I get there with both feet." The Lion got All-fired hot And in a passion flew. "Get out," he cried, "And save your hide, You most offensive You." "I'm not afraid," The Tiger said, "I know what I'm about." But the Lion's paw Reached the Tiger's jaw, And he was good and out. The salt-sea smell Of Mackerel, Upon the air arose; Each hungry guest Great joy expressed, And "sniff!" went every nose. With glutton look The Lion took The spiced and sav'ry dish. Without a pause He worked his jaws, And gobbled all the fish. Then ate the roast, The quail on toast, The pork, both fat and lean; The jam and lamb, The potted ham, And drank the kerosene. He raised his voice: "Come, all rejoice, You've seen your monarch dine." "Never again," Clucked the Hen, And all sang Old Lang Syne.


facebook share button twitter share button reddit share button share on pinterest pinterest

Add The Feast of the Monkeys to your library.

Return to the John Philip Sousa library

© 2022