Richard Stevenson

The March Featured Poet is Richard Stevenston

Please feel free to email Richard at: richard.stevenson@shaw.ca



Kaiaimunu! Kaiaimunu!
What’s a dino guy like you to do?
Can’t get far enough from our kind
even in Papua, New Guinea and the
even more thinly populated islands.

A sauropod with arms and claws?
A Thorazinosaurus relative?
Or has the old boy survived
the bulk of his kind? Why mind
if he clips a few shrubs in the tuliewumps?

They say he’s got a turtle’s, not
a horse’s head. Is herbivorous
and shy. Not aggressive if you
give him his distance, let him munch
outside the crunch of footprints and mics.

Get too close, he might just
gas you with a fetid mist
that’s tough on Gortex duds—
never mind the nostrils. Best not
probe with an expensive telephoto lens.

Best not try to prove anything
about his existence or whereabouts.
So he’s a methane producer!
We haven’t got the chemical know-how
to turn it into some kind of car fuel?

Collecting his farts may be a chore,
but they’re pretty dense and creep
like a fog along the lowest ground,
so maybe the gas could be channeled,
siphoned off when he sleeps – or not.

Don’t wanna get an unflappable dino
flapped, never mind out Ba-rapped
by giraffe-like mechanical feeding crane
apparati or Faye Wray attendants
with Pepsodent smiles in some zoo.

So cool it, Spielberg wannabes.
Ol dino boy here will probably
munch your cell phone outta
yer hand like it were some sort
of dino bon bon or breath mint.

No tellin’ what a turtle-like beak
some ten feet above yer head
could reach and snip off, dudes.
He might not be aggressive.  That
don’t mean he’s not protective.

No. Tell yer camera boys to stay away.
I’ll show you Kaiaimuna as long
as you agree to be blindfolded
for parts of the journey – at my say so.
No rollcall of genus and species today.

Fjorulalli, Beach Walker
of the Westfjords of Iceland—
most often-spotted cryptid.

You jangle with mussels
and barnacles as you walk—
a shaggy Rasta shamblin’.

Reported as having both
Webbed feet and hooves,
But how can that be?

Unless you’re a changeling,
not-all-that corporeal
or committed to our wavelength.

Said to be herbivorous, though you’ve
been known feed on sheep and women—
especially pregnant women.

Sounds like a male fantasy
to me. Something to keep
the wife on a short leash—

or to excuse the man’s violence
when in an alcoholic stupor
or meth or ‘roids rage maybe,

barnacled with malice
and hairy hang-out contentment
when both heads are spent.


A type of Bigfoot or Sasquatch
that haunts the Appalachians—
so-called on account of his reputed
kid-snatching boogey man habit.

Spotted outside Saltsville, Virginia
a lot. The same vicinity as
the Devil Monkey sightings.
Had the community up-tight for a while.

So what’s the deal? Some hairy
homeless guy’s taken to the woods
along with his hurdy-gurdy monkey?
Built a yurt powered with solar panels?

A hairy hominid, for sure—hairier
than Uncle Gus, maybe, but why the fuss?
Short any cows or goats or sheep;
any pink or purple unicorns?

Wood Booger’s got your woman.
Helped her pack her suitcase too?
Gotta chow down on a tube steak
and baked bean dinner now?

Don’t that make you wanna write
A country song? Drag out yer
Willie Nelson albums at least.
Listen to a little corn pone wisdom:

Wood Booger’s gonna get the kids!
Ain’t even got a genus and species!
What! Am I supposed to collect his feces?
Make plaster prints of his big flat feet?

Don’t want my kids to live in a yurt.
No mod cons but what the Shell station’s got.
How hot can this Wood Booger be?
Wood Booger’s got my woman. Gonna set her free.

Richard Stevenson has recently retired from a thirty-year teaching gig at Lethbridge College and has published thirty books and a CD of jazz and poetry in that time. His most recent books are Rock, Scissors, Paper: The Clifford Olson Murders, a long poem sequence from Dreaming Big Publications in the US (2016), and A Gaggle of Geese, haikai poems and sequences from Alba Publications in the UK (2017). Action Dachshund! is forthcoming from Ekstasis Editions in Canada. Other poems from Cryptid Shindig have appeared in or been accepted by Scryptic, Star*Line, Altered Reality, Cryptid Culture, Polar Borealis, and others.