Next Year, I'll Win!
Go down to Devon and you’ll find
A tournament, one of a kind.
It’s not a relay race or chess.
Okay, it’s pretty odd, I guess.
This contest every year confirms
Just who’s the best at charming worms.
Worm-charming’s an ancient sport -
A noble skill, so don’t you snort.
It takes a talent most profound
To charm a worm up from the ground.
But charming ten won’t get you close.
Five hundred worms - okay, that’s gross.
But that’s how many it took Sophie,
Champion of last year’s trophy.
Sophie Starling is the one
Who’s gonna have to be outdone
In this year’s contest. And you’ll see
Who’s doing the outdoing: Me.
My name is Roderick from Rye,
And you may know me as the guy
Who came in second place last year
When one last worm would not appear.
But this time Sophie’s met her match.
I’m at my little garden patch
Becoming what the world needs most -
The King of Worms! (But not to boast.)
In every season, dusk till dawn,
You’ll find me in a field or lawn
Learning what will make a worm
Awake and, upward, start to squirm.
Everyone has got their theory.
All their hunches leave me weary.
Some think worms just love to sup
And yummy food will lure them up.
Others think they’re scared of moles
And that’s what makes them flee from holes.
But I’ve discovered something new
That makes a worm draw close to you.
My secret weapon’s simply this:
Music brings the worm to bliss.
The wriggling beast enjoys the sound
Of symphonies below the ground,
And also jazz and rock and roll.
A worm has an artistic soul.
So while worm-charmers hoot and shout
And beg the worms to come on out,
I’ll be blasting funky tunes
Or trios featuring bassoons.
And I’ve been rehearsing daily
Wormy songs on ukulele!
Oh how Sophie’s tears will fall
When worms galore flock to my call!
Night and day I worked alone.
I didn’t answer door or phone
And every email I ignored.
I had to win my worm award!
And now the day of truth is here.
The day I’ve waited for all year.
When fame and glory come to me!
But what is this? What do I see?
The tournament’s already done?
And Sophie, yet again, has won?
Oh, to my horror, I found out
Just what this weirdness was about.
Those emails that I didn’t see?
Contained an update, actually:
They thought the day would be improved
If the starting time was moved.
So the contestants – all of them –
Were here today at 5 a.m.!
All of them, that is, but me.
So I was late. Tragically.
And Sophie, with a massive grin,
Said, “Roderick, that’s how you win.”
So always – yes, I can confirm –
The early bird will get the worm.