All-American Monsters

Smithsonian Magazine on mammoths and mastodons:

A mammoth discovery in 1705 sparked a fossil craze and gave the young United States a symbol of national might.

By the 1780s, Jefferson convinced himself that the mammoth still lived. When, as president, he sent Lewis and Clark to explore the American West–it was partly to see if they could turn up a living mammoth.

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10 responses to “All-American Monsters

  1. Caption: “Tickle tickle.”

  2. Ha! Amy, I went looking for a cautionary tale about tickling mastodons, with no luck, but did find this poem you will enjoy, by Hilaire Belloc, on the Frozen Mammoth.

    It is known to the whole of that primitive group

    That the carcass will furnish an excellent soup,

    Though the cooking it offers one drawback at least

    (Of a serious nature I own):

    If the skin be but punctured before it is boiled,

    Your confection is wholly and utterly spoiled.

  3. The fossil craze
    In its primitive phase
    (More inspired
    than structurally accurate)
    Reassembled this beast of great renown
    But put the tusks on upside-down

  4. And, yes, I did like the mammoth soup poem!

  5. – AMY!!!!!!! — Good to see your work.

    Never was one with the limerick. However, I really enjoy them.

    Hope you are well.

    – Elk, that is truth! As a hunter I know it to be. Cut the gut, release the narsties in the peritoneal cavity or the abdomen…the meat goes sour very, very quickly.

  6. There was a young lady of Hampton
    Whose rhyming finesse was un-tramped-on
    Her ode to a fossil
    Was thought so colossal
    The seal of approval was stamped on

  7. You win! That was awesome. And not just because you called me young.

  8. Thanks, Amy! Tiring of politics, the news, etc.? More poetry is the ticket.

  9. It is difficult to get the news from poems yet men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there. — William Carlos Williams

  10. In one of Louis L’Amour’s westerns, he has a mastodon — in a footnote he says that there was evidence of still-living mastodons as late as the 19th century in remote mountainous Indian country.

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