When the pellucid evening lingers
After the sun has left the skies
The bat extends the membrane stretched between his fingers
And flies,
That is to say, he flutters,
And, as he flutters, utters cries
Pitched just within the range of human hearing.
Many find him endearing,
But women (speaking
With due respect) sometimes run shrieking,
Fearing that in the absence of a hat
They may need shearing
With sharp cutters
To free their hair from the entangled bat.
But there’s no fear of that.
Although he has weak eyes
He carries radar in his nose for steering.
His asdic tells him where
Lurks, perilous, a head of human hair,
Or, for that matter, where the gutters
Outline the bulky square
Of the old barn; he has his lodging there.
Harmless he is, I’ll swear,
But that he’s crazy none denies
Who ever watched him drunkenly careering,
A disconnected piece of epicyclic gearing,
About the evening skies.