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Jamie and the Monkey

A monkey scrambled from the zoo today,

Across the rooftops to the Kilburn Way,

He climbed above the traffic’s roar,

Politely knocked upon our door,

And asked, “Is Jamie coming out to play?”

 

His mummy said “all right, but do take care,

Don’t run or jump when going down the stair.

Now, take your football to the park,

But come home long before it’s dark,

And you can have an ice cream while you’re there.”

 

So Jamie asked the monkey “What’s your name?”

“My name is Jamie too! It’s just the same.

That’s why I ran off from the zoo,

So I could come and play with you.

Two Jamies will have such a funny game.”

 

Then monkey Jamie ran and climbed a tree.

Wee Jamie boy said “Jamie, wait for me.

Why don’t you show me what to do?

I’ll learn to climb as fast as you,

I’ll reach the top before you count to three.”

 

Atop the tree the Jamies looked around,

Breeze rustling in the leaves the only sound.

When all at once they heard a shout,

Saw lots of people run about,

And robbers holding guns down on the ground.

 

The Jamies thought – what are we going to do?

We must do something, and there’s only two.

And though each robber has a gun,

We’ve got the things we brought for fun,

A football, sticks, bananas and some glue.

 

They made a plan to finish this affair,

The robbers didn’t know that they were there.

So Jamie threw his ball with might,

One robber dropped his gun in fright,

The gun went off and neatly trimmed his hair.

 

The other robber raised his gun instead.

A rain of sticks came down upon his head.

“Ouch! Stop it please, you’re hurting me.

Stop throwing things down from the tree,

We’ve had enough.” And off the robbers sped.

 

The Jamies ate a ripe banana each,

And threw the skins as far as they could reach.

The robbers both began to slip,

Their feet could not get any grip.

They tumbled to the ground with cry and screech.

 

The Jamies mustn’t let them disappear.

“How can we hold them till the police get here?”

“I know, I’ve got my super glue,

We’ll just apply it to each shoe.

The robbers will be stuck until next year.”

 

So, well done Jamie. Well done Jamie too.

Your parents will be very proud of you.

Take Jamie home for tea and cakes,

Your ever loving daddy bakes.

Tomorrow Jamie’s visiting the zoo.

 

The Jamies will be friends for evermore,

On visits to the country and the shore.

They’ll still get up to cheeky tricks,

They’ll run and play and pick up sticks,

Adventures each time they step out the door.

May 2010
 
This was the first adventure about my grandchildren. It wasn't planned and it took me by surprise. 
 
One of the exercises in The Ode Less Travelled was to make up a number of lines in iambic pentameter about anything and without any pattern. Among other lines I wrote A monkey scrambled from the zoo today. It was just a piece of nonsense.
 
Subsequently, I started playing with that line by adding more lines and then verses. It turned into a little story. I didn't know the monkey's name was Jamie, and only found that out when I wrote the third verse. The rest of the adventure with robbers and the Jamies' success in thwarting them similarly evolved, and I was as interested to discover the ending as anyone.
 
But the character of Jamie Monkey and the adventures with wee Jamie, and the other grandchildren as they came on the scene, all developed from this.
 
Jamie Monkey
 
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