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The perfect Bivvi

The perfect bivvi will be level and flat

  • Writer's picturemeldennison

Mini beast poems

Updated: Apr 4

As a writer I have a longstanding interest in nature and the world around me. For many years I have had a passion for the little things, for tiny, often overlooked or unloved creatures. Below is the beginning of a collection of poems that I hope will make you laugh, and also wonder about what might be hiding under the pots on your patio, or under a stone....

Great day for a snail


'An apple a day keeps the doctor away!'

said the slug to the snail

as they revelled

and chomped



and crunched

their lunch with aplomb

tunnelling through

a discarded apple

lying in the grass

'It's a really great day!'

the snail replied

letting out a sigh

and a satisfied burp

as she slurped

her way to the core,

Wondering all the while

if this is what it felt like to be a leaf miner -

she had read about these

in a book chucked in a bin -

they spent their lives in the trees.

How odd!

She carried on crunching

since she was a committed recycler

reduce, reuse was her mantra

waste is such a crime,

if only those humans would learn!

She continued munching

while the slug awaited his turn


You can download a copy of this by clicking on the link below.

If you enjoyed reading this, well why not read another? You may think I have a 'thing' for snails, as yes the following poem includes these popular garden creatures.

Ballad for a banded snail


With my home on my back

I love the freedom of the road

it may look heavy

but it's a light load


No mortgage or loans

no worry or groans

up and down many a leaf

and stem I go


I love to forage in your annual beds



and crunching my way through your veg


I am the bane of the green fingered 

who kindly leave out bowls of beer

for me to drink and hopefully sink

down into a never ending sleep


I like to think

that I can fool you,

I am clever

only coming out at night


My only trace is a trail of shimmering


and the scene of crime -

evidence of half-eaten flowers....

To prove that I am not always writing about snails, here is one to my furry friend the bumblebee. It is February as I write, and it shouldn't be long before the first queens emerge from their underground hibernation and start looking for a nest.

Ballad for a banded snail
Download DOCX • 13KB

Ode to a bumblebee
Download DOCX • 13KB

Ode to a bumblebee


In your furry coat

Of funky black 'n' yellow

You wake up bright 'n' early

When the days are mellow


Buzzin' around my garden pots

I watch you searching for a place

A nice comfy space

That you can call home


Somewhere dark 'n' cosy

You aren't fussed about the view


Being a humble bumble

Bee, you never grumble

As any old mouse hole will do


My garden hums with your song

As you zoom from bloom

to bloom,

All day long


In summer I can happily sit for hours

Watching as you pollinate my flowers

You are a social animal too

I would offer you a cuppa tea

But my liquid nectar

Is not the same as that which you collect, aaah


You can recognise faces

You learn and remember

new places

You even like to play

What more can I say?

You are just like me!

Not everyone appreciates woodlice. Many people like to powder them liberally with pesticide. A couple of years ago I was looking under my plant pots, and in dark crevices in the patio, under stones and I could not find a single one. Unlike other people I was concerned as woodlice are important for a healthy ecosystem. They are nature's recyclers, breaking down dead plant matter. Many, many years ago I would see loads and loads of these little creatures. Whenever I lifted a flower pot, there they would be, running around in search of a dark place to hide in. Now there are a lot less, and I wondered why this could be. My questions led me to contact Buglife to see if they had answers. They suggested that this could be due to the long hot summer. Well maybe. I am keeping an eye out. This experience, combined with my memories led me to write the poem below:

An elegy to a woodlouse


Underneath my garden pots

In the damp shadows

Where it was never hot

I would spot you

Roly polying around



You would scurry

In a hurry

As fast as your many legs could carry you

Whenever I lifted a pot



But today as I peek below

The hyacinths, daffs and pansies

You have gone…

Where?.. Can it be…no!

I don't dare think that

You could be no more



Pill bug

Doodle bug

Cheesey Bob

Billy Baker

Chiggy pig

Monkey pea



OK, so you are an anomaly

A crustacean hanging out on land

When you should be in the oceans and seas



But you are a great helper

Offering a several legs

Munching your way through

Mountains of crunching leaves that

Fall every autumn



Is it because you are not pretty?

Having neither feathers nor fur

Lacking the 'awww'

Factor, that in gardens and cities

there has been a war

Raging against you



But I see your beauty

The way that you curl

Up into a ball

Is a true wonder of the world

You really are a cutie

And you do such a grand job

Or you did, that

I sob loudly

As I feel lousy

Realising pill bug, that you are no more.

An elegy to a woodlouse (1)
Download DOCX • 13KB


Great day for a snail_231101_094232
Download DOCX • 3KB

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