The Three Little Pigs
—a story retold

There were three little pigs, one, two, three
—roly-poly and pink, as pink as could be—
porkers that talked just like you and me.
Building their houses, these pigs were all three.
Two built their houses of stuff that was free:

the first built with straw, the second with sticks
—the third, a smart pig, built with bricks.
Along came a wolf with a bagful of tricks.
He blew down pig’s houses, and just for kicks
had this shtick that he did before getting his licks:

—“I’ll huff and I’ll puff …”

Well, you get the drift, he blew down the pig digs
—that is the digs of the two foolish pigs.
They would not let him in (not totally stupid pigs):

—”Not by the hair of our chiny-chin-chin,”

said those imprudent porkers, those two little pigs.
The wolf ate them both, and danced two little jigs.

But then, to the third pig’s house the wolf came
—a wise little pig destined for fame.
The wolf huffed and he puffed, just the same,
but this little pig put that big wolf to shame.
A house built of bricks spoiled the wolf’s game.

The wolf climbed atop the third pig’s house
—that wolf was a louse—
and slid down the chimney but got a hot douse
in a kettle a-boil on the hearth of the house.
Then the third little pig ate the wolf with his spouse.

Happily ever after, lived that little pig in his house
—snug as a mouse.


An Astronomical Observation

The tall dog purrs
at the purple moon.
The silver bee stings
the red balloon.
The tall dog laughs
to see such fun,
and the moon eats
the stars with a spoon.


Prickly Stick

Prickly Stick went a walkin’
One fine day,
Hey-ho, diddle-dum day.
Prickly Stick went a walkin’
And he walked this way:
Diddle-dum day.
Diddle-dum day.


The poetry of Leland James has been published worldwide in over fifty journals and magazines, including The Society of Classical Poets Journal, The South Carolina Review, New Millennium Writers, Vallum, Orbis, and Aesthetica,  He was an International Publication Prize winner in the Atlanta Review poetry competition, winner of the Portland Pen Poetry Prize, and runners up for Society of Classical Poets, Fish International and the Welsh Poetry prizes. He received the Franklin-Christoph Merit Award for Poetry in 2008 He lives in a cabin in the woods in northern Michigan with his wife of 40 years. You may see more of his poetry at

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