Mabel Finds her Voice in Za-ram /dar


Up into the sky, past the northern star,

A light year away, is the Land of Za-ram/dar.

It’s a jungle of a land where all the trees grow,

Home to every animal;

the big, small, fast and slow.


There, deep in the jungle lived the smallest,

The speediest, squeakiest,  most tiniest  

Little Dormouse named Mabel.


Even though Mabel was an itsy Dormouse,

Her brains were (metaphorically) the size of a house!

She read a lot,  knew a lot and had plenty to say,

But when she spoke people’s ears took a holiday…



Mabel had a stutter

And everyone decided that;

She was great at squeaking

but no good at speaking.

* * *


One morning, the jungle filled with fiery screams,

Geraldine the dragon was wailing heavy streams,

“Help!” She scorched, “My Kittens, my babies they  fell,

Tumbled and stumbled down into the dark well!”


From the darkness the kittens cried,  mewed and yelped,

“Help, Mummy, it’s chilly and scary. Please, please help!”

Desperate to help all the animals  hurried,

they quickly ran, flew, bungled and scurried.


Mabel had a plan, she held up her megaphone,

“W-w-we can” She stammered, “W-we c-c-can…”

“USE MY NECK!” Tanya the Giraffe yawped loudly

The animals agreed: cheering and clapping proudly.


Down the well the Giraffe sent her neck,

She went deeper and lower and then yelled, “HECK!”,

“OH I’m sorry my dear  kittens-but I cannot reach!”

Geraldine’s heart released a thundering loud screech!  


In frustration, our mouse gripped her tail,

As she knew her plan would not fail…  

But the other animals did not listen



They  had decided that,

she was great as squeaking,

but no good at speaking.



The rescue mission needed a new plot,

And anything was worth a good shot.

“It’s easy, w-w-we…”, Mabel Spluttered,

Over her voice the animals muttered.


Mabel continued…


“W-W-What will surely w-w-work…”

“IS IF WE,” The Lord Mayor Wilfred Worm bellowed,

“The Doctor Slither-roo and myself form a robe,

Then predictably, we’ll be the heroes… or I hope!”

(This was not the plan that was  intended,
But it was the plan about to be implemented.)


The Mayor’s body stretched and extended,

As the slippery robe descended…

(Now, everyone knows that legless animals are slippery
And a plan involving a worm dangling from a snake’s tail
Was always , 100% doomed to fail.)

Wilfred lost his grip on Slither-roo

And he  fell to the bottom crying, “OH! POO- POO!”



Mabel shook her tiny  head in despair,

On the kittens this wasn’t fair…

But nobody would listen,



Everyone had decided that,

she was great at squeaking,

but no good at speaking.



Afternoon came and went far too fast,  

For her children the dragon was fraught and aghast. 


Mabel plucked up the courage to speak again,

“I-I-I have a plan,” She squeaked, “W-w-we..”

“Should get me,”Shouted  Peter the Beaver,

“To create a sturdy, strong, tall pole,

By throwing mud into the dark hole!”

(I’m sure by now, you can understand the

Irritation and  frustration  felt by Mabel
At the endless interruptions.)

The whole Planet’s eyes rested on Peter,

Whose mud-slinging, was too eager,

From inside the well the babies sobbed and cried,

“Ouch please stop! It is landing in our eyes!”


“PETER!” Shouted Wilfred from below,

“This won’t work, that you should really know!

I swear, by the all the  power invested in me,

you persist in this mud throwing frenzy,  

And I’ll  lock you up and toss  away the key!”

(This may appear a little mean,

But for his and the kitten’s rescue the worm was keen,
Because the cold was close to obscene
And the number of failed rescues stood at least umpteen.)

Geraldine was about to explode,

As she felt her giant heart implode.


If only people would listen to Mabel…


But they had all decided that Mabel,

She was great at squeaking,

but no good at speaking.



Za-ram/dar’s,  three  moons rose,

And the land was heavy with a hundred woes.

“Help my babies,” sobbed the dragon, “before they freeze”,

“There’s  ice coming on the breeze!”


“I-I- I have a plan,” Mabel stuttered,

“All is lost,” They all sighed, groaned and muttered.

“L-l-listen to me,” Mable spluttered,

“We have failed,” They all cried, moaned and uttered.

“G-G-Guys, l-l-listen”, She stumbled.

“There’s no hope,” They all wistfully mumbled.

“P-p-please l-l-listen,” She stammered.

In defeat their grave calls sadly  hammered.

(You may think what happens next to be extreme,
But so far, Mabel has done well not to scream.
The situation was getting desperate,
And to Mabel no one would listen whatsoever,
To save the Kittens, she had to shout:
It was now or never!)

From her lungs Mabel roared, “BE QUIET!”

Flabbergasted, the birds sung, “What’s the riot?”


“L-L-LISTEN TO ME!” She continued,

“You rude, piffling, piddling creatures!”

A leary elephant asked, “Who’s this preacher?”


Mabel’s eyes pooled with tears,

As she bravely faced her fears,

By firmly addressing her peers,


“I-I-I have a plan that won’t fail,

But your ignorance is beyond any  pale,  

The k-kittens and Mayor need us,

B-B-But with me you won’t discuss,

O-Or allow me  chance t-to squeak,

   Let me help, LET ME S-S-SPEAK!!!!”


The animals were stunned,

And dismayed that a  friend,

they had shunned.


They knew she was great at squeaking,

but over time they forgot that,

She was also good at speaking.

(To frustrate and upset Mabel
And endanger the kittens was not
The animals’ intentions.
But animals, like people, often fail to think,
That’s when there’s need for intervention,
To help people see past themselves ,
And recognise the needs of others.)


“We’re so  sorry, Mabel!” Swallowed the birds.

“If I thought…,” Tanya lowered her head.

“We’ve been really rude!” Agreed Peter.


“Mabel!” Cried Geraldine,

“My poor babies, please tell me your plan”


“W-W- We just need Felix the Spider,

And to celebrate, maybe some cider!”


And so…

They all worked to implement the plan,

Whilst the badgers brewed beer in a pan,

It was Felix who spun a strong-ladder,

But they needed a brave volunteer to go down…


It was decided that following her outburst

That Mabel, the was both the smallest

And most definitely  the maddest!


Then the ladder rolled down the hole,

For once I again they wished the family whole..

Peter and Tanya held the steps in  pairs,

Whilst Mabel descended down the stairs.


When she reached the bottom,

The damp kittens purred, “Thank-mew!”

“Thank-mew! Thank-mew! Thank-mew!”

“Yes my friend,” smiled the Mayor Worm, “Thankyou!”


On the surface the dragon roared in  relief,

She cried, “Babies, you’re shaking like chilly leafs!”

She warmed her kittens  with her toasty breath,

And licked them half to death

(don’t worry kids, this is a figure of speech.
                                                                                  The Kittens were quite safe with their mum!)


As the kittens slept under their Mother’s wing,

The animals drank cider and began to sing!


Drunk on gratitude and good beer,

The Lord Mayor Wilfred Worm cheered,

“I do  declare,  if anyone dares interrupt

Mabel again, they shall be mocked locked up!


The animals were taken aback…


“Haha!” giggled  the merry worm.

“I’m just  joking, No body -HAHA!  will be jailed,”

(He clumsily and apologetically  winked at Peter)

“They will just…I will just…”

The worm’s speech had become, (erm, um..) slightly derailed.


The drunk Mayor smiled and called a toast…

“To the Kittens, and Felix and mostly…

Most especially to Mabel!”

The animals  danced and cheered into the night!


(And here lies the moral of this tale…
It must be remembered without fail.
It takes some longer to say
what they have to say.
It’s important not to interrupt or
hurry them along their way…
Because if we do they may lose their voice
And that’s too heavy a price to pay.
It’s not that Mabel needed to speak louder,
The animals just needed to listen better.)

And so…

To this day not one ignores our tiny Dormouse,

Because it’s never forgotten that;

She’s a really  great  squeaker,

But with a little patience

She’s even better at speaking.




COPYRIGHTED 2017: Pesha-Lily Thornton



















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