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This poem is taken from PN Review 215, Volume 40 Number 3, January - February 2014.

The Second Zoo
After Borges, after Gilbert White
Simon Turner
At first the Kami, with his logical earthquakes, transfixed our seismologists; but, like most undersea deities, his shrines are scaly and sacred to the Japanese;

the Basilisk, when fed on poisonous eggs, becomes increasingly misshapen;

the tears of the Squonk are not commonly shed, as they mimic the frosty disposition of disappointed Minnesotans;

the meat of the Ramora, which is judiciously eaten, and often credited with a cartilaginous virtue, is weighty and insurmountable;

the Phoenix has in appearance a deathless, sacred, insistent, golden and Spanish plumage; yet that image is of astronomical antiquity, and her eggs are seldom;

the Leveller, beside its Bavarian girth, can render an enormous and celestial pyramid that leads the solar system to widen;

the Valkyries (the wild maidens) are mighty judges in a battle, burning the warriors, women and witches, and are so inexhaustible that a sword will not slay them;

Griffons, like all other sketchy monsters, ascend triumphantly, and yoke their strength to a worthy nature, explaining and signifying with fabulous bills;

Elves make a sinister and heathen habitation with cattle-skin and children's hair;

the Three-Legged Ass walks as if triumphant, and stands upon its forehead;

the Zaratan, when its rind first rises and is Irish, discovers a wooded and paradoxical bestiary; and also a merchant and a monk, recording legends upon the rocks as he laboureth: these symbolic inventions seem to be written for devils and saints;

Youwarkees marry on the wing, like angels, by 'charming the wife' as they fly over shipwrecks and islands; 

the Norns are, while weaving, abstracted and Germanic, bringing such men as forget their nature, with medieval refinement, to incapability;

Chimeras abound, and vomit on Arezzo, and on all the volcanoes of the Pirate Coast;

the Uroborus flows under the oceans in the twilight; as the earth becomes circular it springs for land, and sleeps in museums and fish-yards;

in Roman sculpture, Icthyocentaurs abound upon the oceans, translating and alluding: they always allude as they are abounding. Are not their allusions grammatical, like those of the seahorse?;

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