Once upon his beak unshaven

waxed a mustache on the raven

much deplored by his lovely mate.

With her voice all filled with dread,

“It looks and smells of something dead

and squelches e’er my lust to procreate.”

His wish to remain mustachioed

nay stout as fear he’d ne’er unload

in feathered bed beyond yon chamber door.

His shaven beak nay longer dead

quoth he, “Now hath I beardless head”

and buried alive his nib forever more.

Carl “Papa” Palmer of Old Mill Road in Ridgeway, Virginia, lives in University Place, Washington. He is retired from the military and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) enjoying life as “Papa” to his grand descendants and being a Franciscan Hospice volunteer. Carl is a Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and Micro Award nominee. PAPA’s MOTTO: Long Weekends Forever!