“The Prince Frog” by Ann Taylor

When the spiteful fairy cursed me,
the last thing I foresaw was bliss.
But I’ve come to love the oozy slime
between my toes, the slip and slop
of heaving myself to the next pad.
It’s all luscious, a green easy
to get into, not those gleaming greaves,
breast plates clanking, always-rusting
princely stuff. Here I breathe
deep, suck in rich muck scent
of swamp rot, and gurgle with my mates
among white lilies. From underneath,
I spy with telescope eyes.

Oh, no!

Here comes the fumblethumb princess,
always losing her golden ball.
A faint whisper tells me to beg
a kiss – just one, it always says.
Why would I do that? My perfect
match is here, plump, lubricious,
responsive to my croaks,
herself full-lipped,
and well along in spawning.

She can fetch herself
another retriever, a willing kisser,
leave me with my ever after.


Ann Taylor

Ann Taylor

Ann Taylor is Professor of English at Salem State University. Her first book of poetry, The River Within, won first prize at Ravenna Press’ Cathlamet Poetry Competition. Her recent collection, Bound Each to Each appeared in 2013. A comment on this book described her as “a citizen of the world, and her poems are the stamps on her passport . . .” She is currently working on a collection of poems focusing on the twelfth-century lovers, Heloise and Abelard.