West’s Bestiary

Over on Twitter, Colin West has been posting a new little rhyme every few days, featuring an animal for each letter of the alphabet. He’s then been inviting anyone who’s interested to create an illustration to go with the poem. I’ve been following along and here are my sketches. To keep up with the fast pace, and to keep it lively and fun, I’ve not tried to stick to a single style and I’ve created mashups of a few of the letters.

All the words featured here are Colin’s and all the drawings are by me :)

A is for anteater 
Hey, have you met my nice new pet?
An anteater is he.
There’s just one hitch — l’m apt to itch
When serving up his tea!
B is for bat
The bat in flight at dead of night
Can flap about with ease,
For with his ears he somehow steers
A path between the trees.
C is for chameleon
Chameleons, whenever seen,
Are red. Or orange. Maybe green.
They’re one of Nature’s strangest sights,
Their colours change like traffic lights.
D is for dog
My dog is well-equipped to hear
A note too high for human ear.
With ears so big they touch the ground,
No wonder he hears every sound.


E is for elephant
An elephant always remembers,
His head is quite stuffed full of knowledge,
And some of them even are members
Of Mensa, and study at college.
F is for flamingo
Flamingos are a shocking pink,
And use one leg to stand on.
The other leg they use, I think,
To practise how to land on.
G is for glow worm
I know a worried glowworm,
I wonder what the matter is?
She seems so glum and gloomy —
Perhaps she needs new batteries.

H is for hippopotamus
We thought a pleasant pet to keep
Might be a hippopotamus.
Now see him sitting in a heap,
And notice at the bottom — us!
I is for iguana
I have an iguana,
A plucky little fellow.
I fed him on banana
And now he’s turning yellow.

J is for jackal
The jackal, is he full of vice,
A sneaky and a snide type?
I like to think he CAN be nice,
A Jackal and a Hyde type.
K is for kangaroo
O don’t mess with a kangaroo
In either bush or outback,
For if you clout a kangaroo
The odds are it’ll clout back.

L is for leopard
The leopard cannot change his spots.
Those spots he’s been allotted
Are there (and here’s a paradox)
So he cannot be spotted.
M is for moose
What use
A moose?
Except, perhaps
For coats and caps.

N is for newt
I don’t know much about the newt.
I know he’s small, I know he’s mute,
I know he never is hirsute,
And lives life in his birthday suit.
O is for orang-utan
The closest relative of man
Some say, is the Orang-Utan,
And when I look at Grandpapa,
I realise how right they are!

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