Fernando the Traveling Flamingo

This is one of my favorite poems featured in Wacky Rhymes. Hope you find it amusing!

Fernando the Traveling Flamingo


It started a typical early spring day.

I ventured outside just to see—

My beautiful flowers and buds in full bloom

Were trampled upon carelessly.


And also to add insult to injury,

I found on that fateful of days

My collection of knick knacks and garden décor

Abandoned in huge disarray.


gnomesGnellie and Gnobbs, my two cute garden gnomes,

Were cruelly ground into the dirt.

My prized yellow daffodils lowered their heads—

No more were they perky and pert.



The hummingbird feeder was robbed of its nectar.

The bird bath was knocked on its side.

My bright pink flamingo was ne’er to be found.

And I was at once mortified.


I dug up my gnomes and restored the décor.

Then I set up my garden aright.

Fool vandals had trampled my flowers, I thought

And they stole the pink bird out of spite!


But soon, I forgot this unpleasant event.

I continued with my household work.

Occasionally, I’d stop to think of the bird,

But thinking would make me beserk.


Then one late spring day as I gathered the mail,

I opened a curious letter.

Enclosed was a picture of my plastic bird,

Dressed in a knitted wool sweater.


Behind him was the Sydney Opera House.

On the back he inscribed, “Good day, mate!

I’m here in Australia, where it’s bloody cold,

But the cool, five-star lodging’s first rate.


“I’m starting my fantastic trip ‘round the world,

And I had to begin here down under.

I’m so glad I thought to vacation here first—

This land’s filled with intrigue and wonder.


“Thanks so much for letting me travel abroad,

While you stay close at home and play bingo.

I’ll see you again when my trip here is done.

With Love, From Fernando Flamingo.”


I really was taken aback by the letter

Fernando decided to send.

This was more info than my feeble mind

Could ever quite well comprehend.


“My bird wasn’t kidnapped,” I said to myself,

In a whisper of utter elation.

“He’s off to discover what lies out beyond.

Fernando is just on vacation!”


The next card was postmarked Par Avion from France.

He posed by the Champs Eleysees.

He had a lit cigarette perched on his lips

And sported a cool black beret.


“I’ve had all the wine I could drink,” ‘Nando wrote,

“All the cheese I could ever devour.

Here’s a snapshot of me at the Arc de Triomphe—

Another at the Eiffel Tower.”



I soon looked forward to ‘Nando’s postcards.

I wondered where he’d write from next,

I questioned how he could write cards with no hands—

A riddle which left me perplexed.


Soon I had piles of these cards from abroad—

Places too numerous to mention.

From the Kremlin, Great Wall, and Tiannenmen Square,

To the Republican National Convention.


fernandoTo New York, Bermuda, Haiti and Peru

The Yucatan at Chichen Itzà,

The Vatican, Florence, to Venice and Rome,

With a photo of him eating pizza.





My favoritist picture of all that he sent

Was a snapshot of him standing tall

With a flock of flamingos who looked just like him.

Yes, that was my favorite of all.



Then one day in autumn, I ventured outside.

My mailbox was empty, bereft.

I looked toward the garden, and there was my bird.

Looking like he’d never left.


He stood on one leg, and he said not a word.

A small satchel was tied ‘round his back,

With photos, four quarters and two cigarettes—

Was all that he kept in the sack.


fernandoNow each time I pass him to tend to my flowers,

I wonder what Fernando’s thinking.

I hear not a word when I talk to the bird,

But I could swear I’ve seen him winking.


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