lizbrownlee – poet

Poems, animal info, extraordinary women, my books!

H (number 1) is for Hippopotamus

I like hippopotamuses. I have written two poems about them… one of which is in my book, and one of which is posted below – and both of them are painted onto a giant reversible jigsaw.

Hippos are considered to be the most dangerous animal living in Africa, killing more humans than all the other animals combined. They can run at 30km/h and weigh up to 3,200kg.

Despite the fact that they can open their jaws to 4 foot wide – they only eat grass. Seems a bit of a waste of capacity really.

I seem to be changing the subject slightly here, but you’ll see why in a minute. The World Wildlife Fund has a quiz page where you can find your inner animal. It tells you which animal you are most like. I was somewhat startled to find my inner animal is a hippo. Now if they’d said my outer animal was a hippo and my inner animal was a gazelle, I think I’d have understood. But never mind. It’s a good thing I like hippos, isn’t it?

You can find your inner animal here: WWF Inner Animal Quiz. Please don’t blame me if you turn out to be something you consider to be unpleasant.

Here is the poem:

Hippos used to be very numerous – in fact they were known as the common hippopotamus. But now hippos are classified as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, due to illegal and unregulated hunting for meat and ivory (found in their canine teeth) and habitat loss.

To read more about hippos, click here: Hippopotamus on Wikipedia. To read about the IUCN Red List, click here: IUCN Red List.

If you’d like to ‘blog hop’ to another blog in the A-Z Challenge, click here: A-Z Challenge.

Poem © Liz Brownlee  -this post is copyright material with all rights reserved, please do not re-post elsewhere – you may link to it.


  1. 4 feet of grass compactor? Wow! Oh you’re doing animals, can’t wait to read the rest. I love elephants. Let me check that out 🙂


    • I love large grass compactors, nothing like them! hope you enjoy the rest, I love your blog too.


  2. Liz

    Hey Liz! You’re leaping ahead of the rest of us with your Hippo!
    Happy Easter.


  3. Lol, organised is not my middle name – also time-keeping. I’m hopeless – turn up the wrong week for book group. Even forget to go when it’s a poetry day which I arranged. In my defence I have put together a 10 day poetry exhibition which was a great success, it’s just when there aren’t a lot of reminders about my brain goes off on its own. The upshot of this rigmarole is that i didn’t MEAN to post out of sequence, I just did it without thinking at one minute past midnight last night!


  4. Baggy

    Love Hippos and love your poem too!

    I have a collection of Hippos on my smallest window cill in the kitchen – not real ones, of course!


  5. Just took the quiz – I’m a sea lion.


  6. I was just looking at pictures of a six day old hippo the other day.


    • Oooh – it could have been the inner me, Phil. I do feel about very young inside.


  7. I love your hippo poem and the jigsaw must be great fun. I’ve got a bit of a soft spot for hippos (fictitious ones that is). The first children’s picture book I ever wrote was about a hippo (even though it was never accepted by a publisher I still love it.)


  8. Great poem! We have a small hippo collection at our house. Just took the quiz, apparently I am a moose.


  9. I love your hippo poem and the design of it! 🙂


  10. I love hippos. Great poem.


  11. Christie Wright Wild

    What a great poem. The image you create is wonderful!


  12. I love the way you write your poems. This one is really interesting how you took the form. Very nice blog.
    Thanks for stopping by my site.


    • Thank you! I have done quite a few shape poems – not every poem works that way, but some just see to be meant to be in a shape, and some I write with a shape in mind, like the hippo one.


  13. I love this post; I love hippos too. I had no idea they had ivory in their teeth, so I learned something new. 🙂 I also took the quiz; apparently I’m a Proboscis Monkey. Hmmmm……


    • Thanks, Danielle, I think they’ve had fun choosing these animals!


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