Ponds, and the frog I sing, who, forc’d to fame
By poet Bashō’s celebrated name,
Was since evoked a myriad times or more—
Ever silent, never left on shore,
By poetasters made to take the plunge,
To bear without a croak the noisome scunge
And strangely noisy swill of stagnant pools
(All for delight of Buddhist-Baptist fools
Who misconstrue the figure and the ground).
Ah, made to hear that Zen-like water’s sound!
What would the frog say, though, if given choice?
Amphibious apophthegms? No, just voice
Its tranquil transcendental unconcern:
“It could be worse—could be a Greasy Urn.”
This poem was posted on 11 October 2007 as a comment on Steve Dodson’s “The Poetic Frog” post on his Language Hat blog. The poem had no title, but a subsequent post by the author (identified only as Noetica) referred to the poem as the “noetic” frog, so that’s what I’m calling this poem.