dVerse Poets Pub: Galloping Groundhog

Today at dVerse Poetics, it is Open Link Night. We do not write poetry to a prompt but instead share a poetic offering. Come join us! Enough creativity to go around and share. I wrote about an unusual happening today.

Driving home from errands today,
Running full tilt through the high grass
On the shoulder of the road,
Was a woodchuck.

Like a hamster on steroids,
Galloping. Only word for it.
I slowed down and he
Passed me in.a.blur.

I wondered, where was he headed
In such a rush?
Was he hurrying to get back
To his family?
Did he have an appointment
And was late?

One doesn’t usually see woodchucks,
Groundhogs, whistle pigs, ground squirrels
Running by the side of the road.
One usually sees them on TV
Amidst a flurry of photographers
And people, all waiting for Phil
To foretell the weather –
How much longer would winter last?
Tell us Phil.
Let us take your picture Phil.
Let us roust you out of your warm, dark
Burrow and thrust you up in the air
For the crowds to see and scream
And flash lights in your confused eyes.
This year, you bit the wretched mayor
For doing that to you.
Personally, I applauded you and
Wished you had done it sooner.

But this whistle pig running
Down the side of the road…
Did he know about horses?
Was he having a fantasy
Of being a tall wild stallion
running free
Through long prairie grass?

I don’t know.
I just know it was an odd occurrence
And it made me smile…hugely.

65 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. claudia
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:07:37

    hey – it makes me smile as well… i’ve never seen a ground hog in real… maybe spring gave him wings – you know… smiles
    i love what you’ve done with in.a.blur.


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:15:13

      That’s it! He was running home from school where he learned about Pegasus! A friend of mine often does the period t.h.i.n.g to give emphasis to her words. I asked her once if I could steal it sometime and she very kindly said y.e.s!


      • Glenn Buttkus
        Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:42:08

        this technique is new to me too; might have to borrow it to go beyond-the-bar.


        • kanzensakura
          Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:50:48

          I is indeed a fine thing to do. My friend does not write poetry, but in her emails to me and in some of her short stories, she uses those periods. I find it a wonderful thing. Her name is Tess at Let’s Cut the Crap, or How the Cookie Crumbles on WP. She writes wonderful 100 word flash fiction.


  2. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:29:05

    Ah. love the thought of a galloping groundhog.. maybe he was in love and was running after his spring fling.. ?


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:52:55

      That is another thought! Another thought was he thought he had sprouted wings. Anyway, it is rather amazing to see them. They are very shy but will stand their ground. But it totally made.my.day.


  3. Linda Kruschke
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:32:56

    Reading about this groundhog made me smile, too. I loved your diversion into the whole Groundhog Day spectacle, which I’ve always thought ridiculous. I did not know Phil bit the mayor this year — that’s good to hear. Peace, Linda


  4. Glenn Buttkus
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 16:44:57

    Every once in a while we witness a critter doing something wonderful, erratic, bizarre & all we can do is suck our teeth, whistle through pursed lips, & as poets wonder about the.rest.of.the.story.


  5. Grace
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 18:09:33

    That video is so funny, poor mayor, ha ~ I haven’t seen woodchunks around here either ~ They are probably hiding in their warm, dark burrow, smiles ~ I am smiling at the fantasy at the end ~ Hey, we need to shoo away winter very fast as its already end of April ~

    Thanks for the smiles ~


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 23, 2015 @ 19:14:32

      I’ll take out one of my fans and point it north and make it flutter back and forth and create a wind to blow away the winter! Most of the time, you never see groundhogs, esp. in the day. They are shy and keep to themselves but they will defend their territory. I felt sorry for poor Phil and glad he was able to get retribution for all the Phil’s before him. It is Almost May!!!!!!


  6. Madeleine Begun Kane (@MadKane)
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 20:10:00

    Very funny venture inside a groundhog’s head!


  7. Mary
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 20:35:31

    How wonderful when there is something in nature that really makes one stop and think and observe. I think we have to keep an open mind and continue to appreciate all of God’s creatures. Perhaps if we kept our eyes open WIDE more often we would see even more woodchucks in our midst. Could be. I enjoyed your poem, Toni.


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 23, 2015 @ 20:41:46

      I am glad. it certainly made my day. I’ve told several friends, called my mother and told her (we once had a running joke about Mike the Woodchuck” and gave her a huge laugh. Rare these days and so precious.


  8. Let's CUT the Crap!
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 20:52:33

    😀 😀 😀 Someone had posted that video after the mayor was bitten. I laughed my head off and again today. Your poem is uber delightful. The poem rolled like a movie in my head. That woodchuck grew character and a personality just by galloping down the side of the road. I so enjoyed this, Kanzen.
    Thanks so much for the shout out. I’m tickled anyone likes the “.” separations but I wonder if I didn’t pick up the habit because I saw it somewhere and like it. In WP comments you can’t underline of bold a specific word you want to stand out, so now I use it without thinking. I also used dashes, but like the way the periods look better. 😀 😀 ❤


  9. thotpurge
    Apr 23, 2015 @ 22:09:07

    Made me smile as well 🙂


  10. The Course of Our Seasons
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 09:08:25

    I saw a young groundhog sitting by the side of the road yesterday, just watching the world go by. They are so fun to see, even tho they can dig up a garden in a hurry. This was comical and fun – loved your galloping groundhog!


  11. L Weaves Words
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 09:36:10

    Smiles here too 🙂 Maybe the mission was a reenactment of a scene from The Wind in the Willows…


  12. Ninot Aziz
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 11:38:16

    What a visual delight! definitely for spring, and for chasing away the winter blues!


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 24, 2015 @ 15:11:01

      I’ve never seen one running like that. They usually waddle where they are going. Maybe he had winter in his mouth and was running someplace to spit it out and bury it.


  13. Hannah Gosselin
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 12:00:19

    And now I’m smiling!! I love your personification of this guy!!


  14. katiemiafrederick
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 13:17:31

    Ah.. yes.. the ground hogs of the open world.. do not flee at
    sighs of human being.. they live free as all of nature
    can and will do..
    being free..:)


  15. mishunderstood
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 16:30:19

    This made me laugh out loud! So funny and cleverly written.The image of this “ground hog-stallion wannabee” is forever ingrained in my mind.
    It is such a coincidence that yesterday on my way home from work, on a busy road coming into town, a turkey…yes, a turkey was crossing the road. Why did the turkey cross the road?
    To catch up with the ground hog?


  16. billgncs
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 16:40:33

    reminds me of a time I was cycling with a friend on a 60 mile ride or so. at the top of one hill awaited a dog looking at us – short on stubby legs. I thought crap – problems – when we got there he started running along side to race us.


  17. billgncs
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 16:42:07

    Oh.. is your name Hayes ? How should I address you, if you wouldn’t mind. I can use any moniker you prefer.


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 24, 2015 @ 17:13:26

      Toni – my first name. Lots of people who follow my blog call me Kanzen because of the name of the blog. Kanzen is fine because it gives that extra layer of security. Either one is fine. 😊


  18. Anders Woje Ellingsen
    Apr 24, 2015 @ 18:00:28

    I am sorry, Hayes, but I cannot see what you are aiming at with your poem. There is no interesting thought. And there is no connection between the opening and the ending of your poem.


  19. Bryan Ens
    Apr 25, 2015 @ 00:42:41

    and your story made ME smile hugely!! 🙂


  20. kelly
    Apr 25, 2015 @ 10:38:14

    As did your poem. Smiles….


  21. Victoria C. Slotto
    Apr 25, 2015 @ 18:48:28

    Made me smile too. There is a golf course in Reno that is just full of these critters–my husband managed to hit one with his drive but it just scampered across the fairway, I like the horse fantasy idea. Why not?


  22. Desmond, Anthony (@iamEPanthony)
    Apr 26, 2015 @ 16:14:45

    How mighty that stallion must have been! I mean hog… hahah. I’ve never seen a groundhog in person… at least I don’t think… a few years ago I saw a big furry animal that sort of looked like a beaver without the tail. But it was dark and I wasn’t going out to get a closer look..


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 26, 2015 @ 18:36:47

      Then you probably saw a ground hog. If it was foraging for food, I’m glad you stayed put! And oh, that was indeed a mighty stallion galloping through the long grass.


  23. hypercryptical
    Apr 27, 2015 @ 03:51:15

    Your words (and the video) made me smile. Our furry/hairy friends have no qualms of making their feeling of annoyance known – good on’m!
    Anna :o]


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 27, 2015 @ 08:24:53

      I am so glad this made you smile. No, our furry friends do not hesitate. I think we have much to learn from them. Ive always disliked that spectacle for Ground Hog’s Day and I am so glad one of the critters finally had had enough. I think there may be some changes made in future events. Or, at least I hope so!


  24. lightwalker1
    Apr 27, 2015 @ 13:00:27

    I am smiling hugely…I love gophers….. My ancestors cringe when I say that, being farmers who received $0.25 for each tail they could collect. I think the Gophers are happy little creatures and whenever I see them I call them my little friends. I am glad the Mayor was bit. In ancient times, it was called Imbolic throughout Scotland and Ireland or St. Brigid’s’ Day. It celebrates the time 1/2 way between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, traditionally lambing season. The ground hog connection is derived from the practice of weather divination related to watching badgers or snakes leave their dens. Note the word watch, not go in and pull them out. I believe it is one of the pagan traditions adopted by the Catholic Church in an effort to convert non Christian subjects. In love and light Cheryle


    • kanzensakura
      Apr 27, 2015 @ 16:03:24

      I’m glad you liked! Thank you for all the information about them as well. They are interesting folk to be sure. I don’t like the pulling them out either and I hope the biting of the mayor will bring about some changes.


  25. Sherry Marr
    Apr 28, 2015 @ 16:03:32

    Your wonderful poem made me smile….love it that he bit the mayor, LOL………how unusual to see one galloping. I hope he got where he was going safely. Thank you for your wonderful comment on my site….you made my day!


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