THE BALLAD OF THE COSMIC CATERPILLAR

Carlton the caterpillar
loved to explore
the branches of the trees, way up high.
His days full of joy
but like many a boy,
he dreamed of the clouds in the sky.

But unlike his friends,
his dreams knew no ends
and he couldn’t just settle for the sky.
He dreamt of the stars
twinkling way overhead
and going very much higher.

‘Carlton’s Cosmic Dreams',
his mother used to tease
and everyone would laugh at the joke,
but Carlton would pout
for he didn’t enjoy
the fun that his mother would poke.

I’ll show you one day,
to himself he would say,
as he nibbled upon a sweet currant bun
in his favourite tree
where the breeze blew so free,
lazing on a branch in the sun.

There was talk in the town
for the day had arrived when
fireworks were let off in the park.
There was joy all around
and laughing like clowns
for they just couldn’t wait for the dark.

When night-time came
and the sun had gone down,
they gathered around on the green.
Except Cosmic Carlton,
our high flying friend,
for he was nowhere to be seen.

The fireworks banged
and flashed and popped
going on like they never would stop.
Excitement was high,
faces raised to the sky
for soon the rockets would be up.

Unbeknown to the crowd,
who were cheering out loud,
our Carlton was sat at the tip
of a very large rocket,
with hands in his pockets,
waiting for the fuse to be lit.

With a hiss and a fizzle,
the rocket ignited
and shot to the heavens above.
Carlton held tight
with all of his might
and a pair of super-grip gloves.

He blasted so high,
up into the sky,
that he screamed with joy and delight,
but before the big show
he would have to let go
and begin his long return flight.

He jumped with a yell
and quickly, he fell
through the sky amidst flashes and cracks.
Multi-coloured stars
where shooting and popping
and one nearly shot up his back.

But our friend didn’t mind
for his dreams had come true,
he was truly a cosmic explorer.
Just wait till he told all
his friends where he’d been,
but the ground was getting much closer!

He reached in his bag
and gave a great tug
so his parachute shot out overhead.
It had taken him months
to put it together out of
tissues and bits of old thread.

Slowly he sailed,
heading back to the field
for luckily the wind blew that way.
He would soon be down
in the middle of the crowd
and, to his mates, he’d have so much to say.

He had flown to the stars,
in the big milky way,
travelling as fast as a jet.
All his friends gathered round
in amazement and wonder,
on this day he would never forget.




*

Written by Darren Scanlon, 28th April 2015.
Revised 3rd April 2021.
©2021 Darren Scanlon. All rights reserved.

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