Happy National Bad Poetry Day: Houston's Worst Poem

Categories: Poetry

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Yesterday, we provided readers with a single line of "bad" poetry penned by local poet Rich Levy in a last-minute telephone conversation. We asked readers to mine their inner anti-poets to help us build, line by line, a notoriously bad poem in honor of National Bad Poetry Day, which is today.

The result is a 12-line poem about a bird, a caterpillar and a nightingale, a social commentary about the high cost of living and some interesting rhymes and spellings. Even our own Steve Jansen and Olivia Flores Alvarez got in on the fun and contributed their own lines, as did Public Poetry's Fran Sanders.

Thanks to everyone who contributed. The final poem, which we're calling "The Nightingale and the Other Bird," lies after the jump.

The Nightingale and the Other Bird

Once upon a time, a bird flew to the top of a tree
It saw a caterpillar on bended knee
Which was odd for caterpillars don't have knees you see
Slurppppppp...breakfast, says the bird with mouth full
Then a nightingale began serenading the satiated bird with her siren song
"You'll be dinner before much long"
Her etiquette was quite alarming as having given away her plans
She pulled off her mask, twittering "Ah HA"and mumbling curses about the high cost of living,
Eating mangoes, dancing tangoes, pelting passersby when ornery
they answered her with raised fists and twisted lips,
sour feelings growing in their tiny, hard hearts as sour and hard as taffy that's not so laughy
Yes, twas th bst uf tymes and th werst uf tymes, with in you and without ryhmes.

What do you think? Is this Houston's worst poem? Or could we have done worse? Tell us in the comments.

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Kay Cox
Kay Cox

Pretty hilarious but I think I have heard werse in and around the Bayou City.


I actually liked it...could have done much worse...all you had to do was ask me!!


I enjoyed the collaboration & the results. I think we could have done werse.


That's hilarious!

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