Zebra Stripes

Zebra stripes are famously vertical,
But today at the zoo, I finally observed,
Looking down from above, the
Horizontal stripes at the back of his back.
The black and white stripes on the
Rear of the zebra, fall horizontally down
His back legs! So: ‘Z is for Zebra’
Is truly the truth – for his midriff
Is the negotiation between vertical
And horizontal – the true ‘Z-shaped’
Stripes are in the ‘mid-flow’! They
Go across diagonal til the rear has
Them straightened; straight across his
Rear back like the lines of a rug.
The midlines, the ‘Z-lines’, run
Wonderfully ‘Ziagonal’, like
‘Z for Zebra’s’ truth, truly impressive.
And the kicker, another mystery, is
Another observation, looking where
The rear stripes get low and now wide.
In the white spaces appear soft narrow
Lines, pale brown, like a centreline,
Running along each wide white stripe.
So that it seems to ‘add to the extra’
Dimension of the zebra; not just
‘Z for zig-zag’, ‘Z for black and white’,
‘Z for vertical and horizontal’ – but
Z the midway diagonal, the zygote:
The evidence of the middle way,
The soft light brown quantum leap,
Not ‘grey’, but who would’ve guessed:
In the middle of the black and white zebra
Are light brown clefts.

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