The Turtle on the Airplane

la tartarughina della signora Maria
Ten-year-old Carley Helm learned a valuable lesson the other day about airplanes and turtles, and how grownup rules are sometimes very childish.

To make a long story short, Carley brought her pet turtle to the airport. It made it through security, it was obviously deemed a non-risk (no little turtle pistols or little turtle explosives), and the turtle, in its cage, was allowed onboard an AirTrans Airway flight heading toward Milwaukee.

Everything was going great until a big, nasty stewardess said the turtle wasn't allowed. The plane was turned around on the tarmac, Carley and her sisters were asked to get off the plane and "do something" with the turtle, and they chose to throw it in the trash (they eventually got it back). The girls, crying, got back on the plane, and it didn't take long for the Associated Press to glom onto the story -- and for me to write the following poem based upon the story:


The Turtle on the Airplane

There was a little turtle who was sitting on a plane,
He had a little suitcase and little walking cane.
"You really shouldn’t be here,” the stewardess proclaimed

He said, “Why not? I’ve paid my fare, I’m trying to get home.
I let them search my luggage, I let them see my phone.
I even took my shoes off,” said the turtle with a groan.

“Turtles aren’t allowed on planes,” the stewardess did say.
“You’ll have to leave and get back home some turtle-icious way.
Those are the rules,” she said as if she said that every day.

Seeing that there was no use, the turtle disembarked,
He walked back through the lobby with a disenchanted heart.
“There’s no such word as turtle-icious,” the turtle did impart.

“I know, I’ll take a taxi. I’ll take a train,” he said.
“I’ll make it home before they do, and rest my weary head.”
And it was true, for late that night he slept in his own bed

The plane, I’ve heard, it was delayed.
They should have walked instead.

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