Creepy, crawly, scary,
spooky things...
For this pint-sized child,
it’s the job of his dreams.

His passion runs wild
he’s a curious child,
with a mom who’s the creative type.
Knowing her son found something fun
she knew his interest was more than hype.

To the library they go
books and internet searches in tow
reading about, or online chats.
A story before bedtime,
to electrify the brain:
lizards, toads...bats.

Together they post photos online.
Awesome Animals with Ian
mom declares with pride.
Beside his education at school,
this is his “job on the side.”

Just a boy and his bugs
absorbing his six years on Earth.
He uncovers more creatures, amazing
when he and dad dig in the dirt.

Red back salamander,
Not so slimy at all!
This pinky-sized guy is full grown;
found under a corpse of leaves this fall.

At their house you’ll find,
a boy with more than arachnids
on his mind.
Among the bucketed roaches
and see-through glass frog
one bearded leatherback dragon
sits on its log.

A micro pig to steal the show
it’s quick to lick you and go.
A peculiar, corralled sow,
deserving of a second look.
Dog-like in most ways,
named Marmaduke.

Ian awakens pre-dawn,
to care for his pets and cages.
About a dozen or so each day
in various stages.

There’s something small
with quills and spines
under a layer of hedge hog hair.
“Bought her with my own money,” he said.
And named her
Princess Prickly Pear.

“She’s a girl,”
he’s quick to proudly shout.
while excavating a cupboard
to get out
some worms
for her feeding time.
he’s careful to extract,
Super worms to be exact;
treats for royalty
from breeding slime.

The mantis, now gone,
was a favorite for some.
It passed away this last season.
Good thing to have friends,
with very large yards,
and a confident boy with a reason.

Programs for kids, older than he,
to talk and inform—all things Mantidae.

Or, why does the bearded dragon
turn black?
Are they territorial?
Will defend and attack?
This one is white.
White as a ghost.
Devilishly handsome
But, not attractive to most.

Spotted leaf beetles,
grasshoppers galore!
More than worldly beasts,
scratching at the door.

Under a mossy hidden home,
an environmental dome,
strong, silent types do swoon.
Peering out a window to view
his turtle named Brick,
his star tortoise named Moon.

So, what’s a parent to do
With a boy just coming out of his shell?
They encourage and support
and hope he excels
at a field of study
and to educate you—
He’s one amazing little creature
with a quest he is
destined to pursue.

And so, we end this short story
with a fun fact to ponder.
Are we all part of his program?
Ask Ian anything, but don’t wander.

He’ll capture your spirit
breathe interest into the soul.
You’ll learn much more
than old bones will ever know.