The original poem was published in 1892. The version here was adapted from a copy in The Oxford Book of Children's Verse, eds. Iona and Peter Opie (London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1973), pages 305-306.
Canary-birds feed on sugar and seed.
Parrots have crackers to crunch.
And as for the poodles, they tell me the noodles
have chicken and cream for their lunch.
But there's never a question
about my digestion.
Anything is okay for me.
Cats, you know, can sleep in a chair.
Chickens can rest upon rails.
Puppies are able to sleep in a stable,
and oysters can nap in pails.
But no one supposes
a poor camel dozes.
Any place is okay for me.
Lambs are indoors out of the sun.
Coops are built for hens.
Kittens are treated to houses well heated,
and pigs are protected by pens.
But a camel is handy
wherever it's sandy.
Anywhere is okay for me.
People would laugh if you rode a giraffe,
or rode the back of an ox.
It's nobody's habit to ride on a rabbit,
or to try to ride a fox.
But as for a camel,
he carries families.
Any load is okay for me.
A snake is as round as a hole in the ground,
and weasels are wavy and sleek.
And no alligator could ever be straighter
than lizards that live in a creek.
But a camel's all lumpy
and bumpy and humpy.
Any shape is okay for me.
complaint \kam-'PLEINT\: protest
digestion \dai-'JES-chen\: your stomach's job
rail \reilz\: metal bar
stable \'STEI-bel\: where farm animals sleep
pail \peil\: metal bucket with a handle
doze \douz\: nap
coop \kup\: henhouse
handy \'HAN-di\: useful
sleek \slik\: smooth
*pronunciation for 5-vowel languages
Indefinite Pronouns (used for general reference, not specific)
SINGULAR (for the most part): Is anybody here? Everyone is busy.
• any is/are, anyone, anyone else, any one of you, anybody, anybody else, anything, anything else
• none is/are, no one, nobody, nobody else, nothing
• some is/are, someone, somebody, somebody else, something
• all is/are, everyone, everybody, everybody else, everything
• whoever, whomever, whatever
• one(s), each, such is/are, either, neither, other(s), another
SINGULAR OR PLURAL (depends on meaning): any, none, some, all, such
PLURAL: both, several, few, many