Friday, May 30, 2008

Poetry Friday - The Age of Dinosaurs

I was thinking about this poem today because I saw a photo of my nephew with some of his favorite dinosaurs. I live in a house littered with tiny dinosaurs, too, and read many books about dinosaurs to a certain small boy.

Of course, the poem is also about growing up. These days of small boyhood will not last nearly as long as the age of dinosaurs.

The Age of Dinosaurs
by James Scruton

There are, of course, theories
about the wide-eyed, drop-jawed
fascination children have for them,
about how, before he's learned
his own phone number or address,
a five-year-old can carry
like a few small stones
the Latin tonnage of those names,
the prefixes and preferences
for leaf or meat.

My son recites the syllables
I stumble over now,
sets up figures as I did
years ago in his prehistory.
Here is the green ski slope
of a brontosaur's back,
there a triceratops in full
gladiator gear. From the arm
of a chair a pterodactyl
surveys the dark primeval carpet.

You can read the rest of this poem here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a sweet poem. I've never had a dino-obsessed child, but we have had dino-obsessed friends. And it always makes me think of an article I read in grad school, something with "Expert Child" in the title. It was about dinosaur expertise in kids (and how similar it is cognitively to expertise in all sorts of subjects, within adults).

But I digress - sorry!