You’re IT!

“I’ll be it,” said Elephant to his friends.

“Ready or not, here I come!”

He thundered around the jungle,

boasting and rapping this rhyme:

 

“I’m the heavyweight champion

of the world.

My bottom’s as big as a house.

My ears are the shape of Africa,

and I’m scared of nothing …

… except a mouse.

 

I’m it !

My voice is loud.

I’m it !

I trample the crowd.

Everyone knows what noise I make.

My trunk plays jazz and pop.

I never forget

how amazing I am.

I just don’t know how to …

stop!

 

PARP !

said Elephant to Giraffe.

You’re it !

 

“I’m the tallest animal

on this earth.

My neck is telescopic.

I look down on you all

and make you feel small.

Tiny and microscopic.

 

I’m it !

I’m a hoity-toity cutie.

I’m it !

Marvel at my beauty.

 

Nobody knows what noise I make.

It’s a snooty snorty sneer.

And when I catch Miss Hippo up

I’ll whisper in her ear.”

 

SNORT !

said Giraffe to Hippo.

You’re it !

 

“I’m the plumpest animal

on the planet.

My belly is pink

and stupendous.

I can swim underwater,

or trot on the land

and my toothy yawn

is tremendous.

 

I’m it !

I’m a cool river cruiser.

I’m it !

I’m a hip swampy snoozer.

 

Crocodiles know what noise I make.

My burps are their favourite song.

Flamingos take off

when I open my mouth,

then crash

at the smell of my pong.

 

HONK !

said Hippo to Lion.

You’re it !

 

“I’m king of the beasts,

you great big sausage.

Nobody messes with me.

I’ll sizzle you

on my barbecue

when it’s time for tea.

 

I’m it !

I’m as strong as the sun.

I’m it !

I’m the golden one.

 

The universe knows

what noise I make.

Stars tremble at my roar.

I frighten myself

at how scary I am.

Magnificence can be a bore.

 

RAAHH !

Said Lion to Monkey.

You’re it !

 

“I’m the smartest animal

in the jungle.

My brain’s the size of a mango.

I can peel a banana

and count soldier ants

while dancing the fandango

 

I’m it !

I’m a cheeky little monkey.

I’m it !

My moves are fast and funky.

 

Everyone knows what noise I make.

I chatter and shriek

day and night.

I’ll trick little Mouse

from his hidey-hole

and give him a terrible fright.

 

OOH-OOH EE !

said Monkey to Mouse.

You’re it !

 

“I’m the tiniest animal in this game.

I know all the best hiding places.

Those bullies and bigheads

can boast all they like,

but they can’t scurry

into small spaces.

 

I’m it !

I’m a wise little twitcher.

I’m it !

I see the bigger picture.

 

Everyone knows what noise I make.

I’m scared a lot so I squeak,

but I know someone

who’s frightened of me.

Go on – turn the page –

Take a peek.”

 

BOO !

said Mouse to Elephant.

You’re it !

 

Parp! squealed Elephant,

who crashed into hippo,                 (Honk!)

who toppled giraffe,                        (Snort!)

who fell onto lion,                            (Raah!)

who grabbed monkey’s tail,          (Oo-oo-Ee!)

 

and the five friends collapsed

in a crazy, mixed-up heap.

 

“You’re TWITS!“ said Mouse,

“and here’s a newsflash for you all:

pride comes before a fall.”

 

Mouse ran away

before they could squash him,

grinning from ear to ear.

 

“Game over! I’m the best!

I may be small, but I beat the rest …”

 

Then he trod in some monkey poo

and fell flat on his face.

 

THE END

 

© Nick Walker 2017