Of Purple Mushrooms and Why To Avoid Them

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By: Teramir Posted on: December 13, 2006

(Note: The following was written during the author's first sojourn to Bopalopia, after he had been there for quite some while but before it occurred to him that the Divines in Their infinite wisdom might have provided some hints, somewhere, on how to leave. He was thus feeling a little mentally unstable at the time, which may explain a thing or two about this poem.)

Of Purple Mushrooms and Why To Avoid Them, by Teramir

While wandering the Black Forest,
An unusual thing did I find:
A colorful wild mushroom,
Of a most peculiar kind.
'Twas of a startling purple shade,
And covered in spots bright yellow
And gave off a strange but pleasant scent
Which made one feel quite mellow.

I picked it up, wondering
At what sort it might be;
Never before in my life
Had I seen such things, you see.
Before I could investigate, though,
It vanished into thin air;
Surprised at this, I looked around,
But no more mushrooms were there.

Disappointed, I turned to walk away,
But there came a POP! from the ground.
Searching, I found 'twas another 'shroom
That had made the sudden sound.
It hadn't been there a moment ago,
Yet there it was, full-grown,
Exactly where the first had been,
By a little mossy stone.

Now thoroughly fascinated, I crouched down,
In order to study the thing
For I feared if I picked it, 'twould vanish again,
And perhaps up a third would not spring.
But I quickly discovered 'twas to no avail,
For it soon disappeared anyhow;
It was there one moment, gone the next--
I was getting puzzled, now.

A few seconds later, again came a POP!
This time from off to the north.
So, determined to understand at all costs,
Bravely I sallied forth.
The rest of the day I continued this way,
Chasing pop-pop-pop-pops left and right,
But I was still none the wiser when
I stopped to rest for the night.

But then a new thought entered my head:
The fungi HAD smelled quite sweet,
And I couldn't help but ask myself:
'Do you think they'd be good to eat?'
In my defence I can only suggest,
Since I had been around them all day
That perhaps their aroma had gone to my head
And was making me act in a quite foolish way.

For I did not think further but set out once more,
Searching every inch of the ground,
And finding a 'shroom on the forest floor,
I straightaway gobbled it down.
(To any children listening:
You should know not to be so silly.
NEVER go gathering unknown plants
And eating them willy-nilly.)

To my chagrin, I quickly began
To feel myself grow light-headed
Belatedly, I knew my late-night
Snack would be regretted.
What happened next was strange indeed,
For my vision began to go--
And then my head cleared, and I found myself gazing
At huge mushroom caps, from BELOW.

Wondering at the sudden change,
I got back to my feet;
Then behind me a voice called 'Hey, man, peace!
Have you got any goodies to eat?'
Turning, I nearly fell again, for
Strolling by at a leisurely place
Was a mushroom, nearly as tall as I --
With arms, and legs, and a face.

I shook my head, and blinked my eyes
But the creature remained, even so.
'What was IN that thing I ate?' I muttered.
'I'm not sure I want to know.'
So now here I am, stuck in this strange land--
Bopalopia, I'm told, is its name--
And if I don't find a way home soon,
I think I may go insane.

Don't get me wrong, it's a very nice place,
But it makes very little sense;
And jutht don't comment on the Printheth'th lithp;
She'd probably take offenth.
The beavers are clever, the cows quite polite,
Sir Piggly's the boldest of all
And everyone was most helpful
In bringing 'bout Hildabroom's fall.

But too much of anything, even the best
Sooner or later gets old,
And if I hear one more 'gimth-grinkleth' tune
My sanity may just fold.

And the cats, the cats! The cats in their hats--
They laugh and they dance, dance all about,
Then tipping their hats, they're gone in a flash
As they dance all about, wand'ring in, wand'ring out.

I have tried to greet them, they've not said a word.
In their hats so absurd, they come and they go.
Everyone else has been friend or been foe
But those cats wearing hats--what they are, I don't know.
Why are they here? What might they be?
They're nice in their way--they've an odd sort of charm--
But they haven't a purpose, that I can see
They haven't been helpful but haven't done harm.

I've tried and I've tried, for days now I've tried
But still I can't seem to solve this one puzzle
And though I don't normally drink, I do think
That just now I could go for some strong ale to guzzle.
Nothing else yet has made sense of this place;
Someone, please, help me, I don't want to stay
I'll never go near purple mushrooms again
I'll owe you forever -- just get me AWAY.