The Horse and the Elephant

Updated on April 1, 2019
Jodah profile image

John is an animal lover. There is not a time in his life when he didn't have a pet. He now has six cats, one dog, and one chicken.

A ceramic elephant plant stand and wooden horse that I sketched using colored pencils.
A ceramic elephant plant stand and wooden horse that I sketched using colored pencils. | Source

The Horse and the Elephant

Horse

The horse said to the elephant,

"You are so big and strong.

I envy you your awesome power,

And your trunk's so very long."

Elephant

"But, you are graceful, sleek and swift,

You race for great prestige.

I'd like to be so stately,

You are a lovely steed."

Horse

"Well, humans use me for their sport,

To ride, or race if able.

When I am not in their use

I'm locked up in a stable."

Elephant

"I hate my large and floppy ears,

My trunk drags on the ground.

I'd love to have a tuneful voice,

Not this loud trumpet sound."

Horse

"You have the freedom of the plains

To run and play at will,

The largest animal on land,

Your tusks are cool as well."

Elephant

"Our freedom's not all as it seems,

We're sought by men with guns.

They kill us for our ivory,

Or just for sporting fun."

Horse

"It seems that we both can relate,

Mankind's obsessed by sport

That cruelly exploits animals.

This practice must be fought."

Elephant

"So, let all animals unite

Against the plight we face.

Humans are just one of us,

This treatment's a disgrace."

Horse

"I'd love to join with you my friend

To carry out this plan,

But sadly I'm a wooden horse

And you're a mere plant stand."

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 John Hansen

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      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        4 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you Verlie, I thought long and hard how to do that. I wanted to use my drawings in some way..then it just came to me. Glad it worked.

      • snakeslane profile image

        Verlie Burroughs 

        4 months ago from Canada

        Aww, what a sweet poem! Fits like a glove with your still life drawing. I enjoyed how you brought the figurines to life, and shed light on their plight.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        6 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Lawrence, thank you for sharing that fact. I knew Clydesdales were strong, and when you think of it, yes ratio to weight I would believe that they are probably stronger. Glad you enjoyed the poem and can relate to the message.

      • lawrence01 profile image

        Lawrence Hebb 

        6 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

        John

        Lovely poem here, but a little known fact is that in ratio to their weight, the Clydesdale or 'Shire' horse is actually stronger than the Elephant!

        And the poem carries a strong message I can relate to.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you, Peggy. Yes, I have always been an advocate for the protection of animals and respect their place on Earth. I am glad my words highlighted that. I appreciate the follow too.

      • Peggy W profile image

        Peggy Woods 

        7 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Animals populated our planet long before we humans arrived. Your words admonish us to respect animals and not kill them for their ivory or abuse them in other manners. Well done!

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Hi Bill my friend. I greatly appreciate your comment in regard to my artwork and the poem. I do fell that this is an important message for mankind, and what better way to deliver it than disguised as humour.

        I too hunted in my younger days but being older and much wiser now feel guilty about that and have done my best to make up for those ways. I read that your own artwork had been accepted for an exhibition. Congratulations on that. It’s another string in your talented bow. I love the cat going to get his other arm tattooed.

      • Billrrrr profile image

        Bill Russo 

        7 months ago from Cape Cod

        Powerful art work and a poem that packs two punches in a single verse: a left jab with a social message and a right cross with lively wit and humor. I enjoyed this John very much. As a young man I hunted, as did most everyone I knew back in the 1940s and 50s. Some time in my mid life I turned against guns, hunting, and even the racing of animals. I think that humanity must learn kindness to animals above all else. Only when the world does this, will we be on the path towards universal love and peace. I too have had six cats, two dogs, no chickens, but a few birds and a lot of brightly colored fish.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Dianna, I thank you deeply for the compliment on my drawing and for reading and appreciating the poem and its message.

      • teaches12345 profile image

        Dianna Mendez 

        7 months ago

        First, your drawings are outstanding and capture the reader's interest immediately. I enjoyed the conversation between the horse and elephant. They have an important message for all to hear.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Yes, Jo, that is unfortunately true. Thank you for reading.

      • jo miller profile image

        Jo Miller 

        7 months ago from Tennessee

        It's seems as humans we're always finding something to abuse.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        That's great to hear Shauna. I support the World Wildlife Foundation too.

      • bravewarrior profile image

        Shauna L Bowling 

        7 months ago from Central Florida

        John, I'm an active member of Defenders of Wildlife. If all I do is donate and keep up my membership, I'm helping save our precious planet.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thanks Shauna. You are right in your observation too. Animals themselves may be helpless to do anything about the situation, but many humans,though empathising with the situation, are just too complacent to take action.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thanks for reading Md. I am glad you found the format of this poem interesting, and if you learned something new that is even better. Cheers.

      • bravewarrior profile image

        Shauna L Bowling 

        7 months ago from Central Florida

        Love the message here, John. I can also see the symbolism of the wooden horse and plant stand elephant as human excuses to empathize but do nothing.

      • profile image

        Velcro 

        7 months ago

        A very sound message in an impressively creative manner ....the poem in the form of a conversation and such a logical conclusion filled me with delight....it was such a great piece...I learned a lot ....Thank you for sharing John !!!

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you Venkatachari. I always appreciate your generous comments.

      • Venkatachari M profile image

        Venkatachari M 

        7 months ago from Hyderabad, India

        Very interesting poem with a great message to humans. I appreciate your muse and the sketches done by you.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thanks for reading and commenting Hari. Glad you found this fun.

      • shprd74 profile image

        Hari Prasad S 

        7 months ago from Bangalore

        John,

        A great message and fun poem. Thanks for letting us know your innovative way to trigger your muse.

        - hari

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thanks for visiting, Shannon. Yes, we are just one species of animal, though many of us think ourselves superior. However, if you look at what we have done to the environment, our fellow man, and the forcing of other animal species into extinction, that is debatable. Glad you liked this and the message.

      • shanmarie profile image

        Shannon Henry 

        7 months ago from Texas

        This is so clever! And one with quite a message. I especially like the line "humans are just one of us." How very literal that we are also part of the animal kingdom. Also true on more figurative levels as well.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        MizB, I wanted to use the drawing as an accompaniment to a hub but had trouble working out how I could. It just started out as a dialogue between the horse and elephant but I wasn't sure the direction it would take. Eventually, I had a lightbulb moment, hence the last couple of stanzas and the ending.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you, Liz. Yes, it did start out that way and I wasn't sure of the direction it would take. I was pleased with how it turned out though.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Hello Linda, my endings surprise myself sometimes lol. Thanks for the kind comment and I am glad my poetry is food for the brain.

      • MizBejabbers profile image

        Doris James MizBejabbers 

        7 months ago from Beautiful South

        John, I started off thinking what a cute poem this was, but then you brought me to tears in your last four verses. No matter if they turned out to be a wooden horse and a plant stand. I agree, this injuring and killing of animals for sport must stop. Pretty drawing. Your art shows your talent, too.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        The mental power is called imagination, Elijah lol. Yes, like if the walls could talk. Thanks for the kind comment.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        I am pleased this gave you a 24 hour smile Ruby. Thank you.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        I am happy that you enjoyed this poem Lori. It was a little different I admit. Yes, I drew that. Thanks for the kind comment.

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        7 months ago from UK

        The first few verses reminded me of the phrase "the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence". But the ending switches this poem to animal conservation and treatment. From your artwork it appears that writing is only one of your many talents.

      • Carb Diva profile image

        Linda Lum 

        7 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Surprise ending for sure, and another drawing by Mr. Hanson. There are always several layers to your poetry. You give us much to think upon.

      • The0NatureBoy profile image

        Elijah A Alexander Jr 

        7 months ago from Washington DC

        Wow, John, what kind of mental power do you have that hears the thoughts of two drawn animals. As a matter of fact, how do they have such knowledge of human's behavior toward all other life on earth?

        I suppose it is like the "If Walls Could Talk", I guess they can by bringing to our attention just how imposing human are on all other life on earth.

        A supreme composition to say the least.

      • always exploring profile image

        Ruby Jean Richert 

        7 months ago from Southern Illinois

        Your rhyme put a smile on my face that will last all day, enjoyed very much...

      • lambservant profile image

        Lori Colbo 

        7 months ago from Pacific Northwest

        Oh my gosh, John, total surprise ending. Hilarious. Most of the way through I was thinking the poem was depicting how we tend to be dissatisfied with who we are, wanting to be someone else who has it better, then it went into animal cruelty. It was a very clever poem.

        Is that your drawing? It's very well done.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you for reading Kristin. Glad you enjoyed it.

      • Kristin Shay profile image

        Kristin Shay 

        7 months ago from Illinois

        Love it

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Li-Jen, you got it. Animals are just as helpless as the inanimate objects..and at man's will. I am glad the ending was a surprise. thanks for reading and commenting.

      • Li-Jen Hew profile image

        Li-Jen Hew 

        7 months ago

        Hey Jodah. Powerful message in the poem. I didn't expect the ending lol. It goes to show animals are helpless as the objects. The animals complimented each other then realised humans have taken over. Good rhyming and poem. Thanks for sharing.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        I don't really know what to say, Eric. As long as what I write touches those who read it, such as yourself, I am happy. Glad to hear you quit tracking for Hunters.

        I look forward to hearing from Gabe too. Have a great day.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Pamela, there is usually more than first appears in my poetry :) I am glad I got the point across concerning the plight of animals. Thanks for reading and commenting.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Yes, Louise, the hunting and cruelty of these and other majestic creatures angers me. Thanks for the kind comment.

      • Ericdierker profile image

        Eric Dierker 

        7 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

        Alrighty then I am drafting you for my baseball team cuz you just knocked another home run out of the park. And I am a critic.

        I was a tracker for a bit but quit doing it for hunters. Yuck. My boy tracked a coyote for about a mile Sunday.

        John you know you will hear from that Gabe on this one. You just amaze life with your art. Muchas Gracias

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        7 months ago from Sunny Florida

        At first I thought the elephant and the horse were just looking at the how cool the other one was, without appreciating themselves. Then, you addressed the problems of the poor elephants being slaughtered for no good reason, and also the treatment of the horses and other animals. Your poetry spelled all this out beautifully.

      • Coffeequeeen profile image

        Louise Powles 

        7 months ago from Norfolk, England

        John, I love this poem about the horse and the elephant. It is sad that elephants are still getting killed for their tusks. When will people learn? I found this poem very touching and moving.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Harish, I greatly appreciate your comment. I have always been an advocate for protecting our environment and wildlife. Every animal species has as much right to live as mankind does. Thank you for your supportive and encouraging words.

      • Harishprasad profile image

        Harish Mamgain 

        7 months ago from New Delhi , India

        Love reading this beautiful poem. The line , " Humans are just one of us " is a strong message to the whole humanity.

        Sometime , similar thoughts arise in my mind why we put hapless animals to immense torture , and even killings !

        John , you ' ve given a voice to all animals through this wonderful creation. A very creative and wonderful work indeed.

      • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

        John Hansen 

        7 months ago from Queensland Australia

        Thank you very much, Kamkar. I am glad my message was direct and easy to understand.

      • Kamkar sanjukta profile image

        Kamkar Sanjukta 

        7 months ago from India

        Great message in a very direct and simple way.

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