April Fool's Day poem: ‘Jabberwocky’

Lewis Carroll's playful nonsense poem 'Jabberwocky', for April Fool's Day.

31/03/2017
2 minutes to read


By Lewis Carroll

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
    And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
    The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
    The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand:
    Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
    And stood awhile in thought.

And as in uffish thought he stood,
    The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
    And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
    The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
    He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
    Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”
    He chortled in his joy.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
     And the mome raths outgrabe.


A Poem for Every Night of the Year

by Allie Esiri

Book cover for 9781509813131

A poem for April Fool's Day from, A Poem for Every Night of the Year, a beautiful collection of 366 poems compiled by Allie Esiri, one to share on every night of the year. 

Lewis Carroll first started writing the nonsense poem 'Jabberwocky' a decade before Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was published. He included the finished version in the sequel, Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There.

The Complete Alice

by Lewis Carroll

Book cover for 9781447275992

If the poem whets your appetite for more of Carroll's writing, have a look at the stunning Macmillan Children's Books edition of The Complete Aliceincluding dreamlike full-colour illustrations, colour versions of Sir John Tenniel's originals, by celebrated artist Harry Theaker, under the direction of Tenniel himself.