Poem Tryouts: Clothes Make The… uh… Animal

29 Oct

8:01 a.m.

listening to Vivaldi

by Yago Partal

by Yago Partal

Hello, all. We are grey, grey, grey outside. Despite this, we have a heat wave tomorrow before the weather behaves and returns to proper autumn temperatures. To lighten up the greyness, whether it be external, or internal, I have a collection of images that cannot help but lighten up the day. If you’re having a great day, they’ll be like helium.

by Yago Partal

by Yago Partal

My brother ( the one out in California) sends links, almost every day, to the wonderful things he comes across while trawling for wonderful things. The Zoo Portraits I am about to introduce are his find. The moment I saw them I knew I wanted to use them as a prompt. How to use them in a poem I’m still a little foggy about, although I’ll make a couple of comments that might start you down a track.

by Yago Partal

by Yago Partal

Sit a moment and think about animals. Let images flash, or wander, through your mind: domestic, wild, zoo, as seen on television, any and all animals. Picture them moving, the close-ups you have seen of their faces. Is one hippopotamus pretty much like every other hippo you have looked at? How about this hippo? He has a wardrobe. How has the clothing added to, or shifted your perception of hippos?

Look at the panther and the snail — I am partial to the snail — Go to the link I am about to give you and look at all the animals. Jot notes on any wandering thoughts. As you go through, note if any of them remind you of someone. The someone can be in your life, or a type, like a boxer, a DJ, a salesperson… How does the animal’s appearance in clothing add to, or shift, your perception of that person?

What does the clothing do?

Your response might be metaphorical, a portrait of someone, even you, painted through your more nuanced perspective of, say, a panther. You might write about clothing and its influence on perceptions. You may include the animal portraits in some way, or use them as your start point.

At Zoo Portraits, the first three pages are the ones you want, with all the portraits. (The website promises t-shirts and other merchandise come 2014.) Apparently the artist, Yago Partal, was caught by surprise at the response to his clothing animals. I would like to thank Isabelle Bazsó, who answered my email so quickly, I was able to use the images in this post.

by Yago Partal

by Yago Partal

I shall see you Thursday for links; Friday for the week’s roundup of prompts; and next Tuesday for a prompt.

Happy writing, everyone.




Posted by on 29/10/2013 in exercises, poetry


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29 responses to “Poem Tryouts: Clothes Make The… uh… Animal

  1. Hannah Gosselin

    29/10/2013 at 9:28 am

    Oh my word!! Margo. I was literally just talking to a friend who has a pup the same age as mine and guess what we were talking about??!! Clothing our furry friends…Of course! Craziness.

  2. Misky

    29/10/2013 at 10:53 am

    • margo roby

      29/10/2013 at 11:06 am

      You are still flu-ey? Woman, you are obviously not behaving. Bundle up, eat and don’t think.

      • Misky

        30/10/2013 at 6:13 am

        This is tummy stuff and exhaustion that started on Saturday. Caught it off one of the builders.

        • margo roby

          30/10/2013 at 7:37 am

          Well, if you will have them in.

          Tummy stuff and exhaustion from it can feel worse than most anything. No dairy. Make chamomile tea and peppermint tea. Separately.

  3. Carol Carlisle

    29/10/2013 at 12:48 pm

    OMG I am having so much fun. Maybe too much fun. I already had my own well dressed animal that I was looking for a reason to post.
    I double dipped with another sight today with a fun quote!

  4. Ruth

    29/10/2013 at 3:18 pm

    hmm… I wrote an anti-bullying poem of sorts & I’m not saying the hippo is one, but he does in the pic look a bit bullyish, don’t you think? 😉

    • margo roby

      29/10/2013 at 3:23 pm

      A bit of a roughneck, uses his size to intimidate… I think you have it, Ruth.

  5. whimsygizmo

    29/10/2013 at 4:47 pm

  6. Debi Swim

    29/10/2013 at 5:32 pm

    Sorry, I can’t get it to post neatly but it is up anyway! Thanks, Margo – neat pictures.

    • margo roby

      30/10/2013 at 7:34 am

      I hate when that happens. I get so frustrated because I feel I ought to be able to fix it. Actually I feel that wordpress ought to be able to fix it!

  7. Irene

    29/10/2013 at 8:50 pm

    Had to write one. Went for


    • margo roby

      30/10/2013 at 7:35 am

      I love the sheep photo. Also your comment ‘Went for sheep’.

  8. barbara_y

    30/10/2013 at 11:25 am

    Craziness. So much chance for fun, so of course I went contrary

  9. Irene

    30/10/2013 at 10:50 pm

    So that bear got
    my eye

  10. purplepeninportland

    31/10/2013 at 12:15 am

    This was so much fun! The portraits are hysterical.

    • margo roby

      31/10/2013 at 7:32 am

      Aren’t they? I have a couple that I feel downright connected to, as I might were they human portraits.

  11. Irene

    01/11/2013 at 10:12 am

    Back with a third zoo portrait and this time it’s


  12. julespaige

    01/11/2013 at 7:19 pm

    Cute personas. I’ll have to check the link out another time…
    This is all I’ve got. Busy week and I’m running out of steam.

    • margo roby

      02/11/2013 at 9:29 am

      Breathe, damn it. I keep telling you to stop and breathe!


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