Thoughts on Evolution and the Duckbill Platypus

While searching for a short poem on the duckbill platypus to recite to my kindergarteners, I ran across the website,, and the statement, “Such ‘patchwork’ animals and plants [like platypus], called mosaics, have no logical place on the so-called ‘evolutionary tree’.”

After reading this, I decided to get a second opinion, so I asked my cat, Tiger Georgette McMonkey McBean, what she thought of the evolutionary tree.

Tiger Georgette responded, “You humans draw it all wrong.”

“What do you mean?”

“The cat goes on top. Cats are the pinnacle of evolution.”

“Ok, then where do people go?”

“On that limb you've been trying to saw off.”

“And the duckbill platypus?” I asked.

“Hanging on by the skin of its teeth. Now go draw it right.”

With help from Tiger Georgette and the website, I wrote my own platypus poem, complete with illustration. Sadly, it is probably not appropriate for most kindergarteners.

Disclaimer: I am both an evolutionist and a creationist. I believe God created the laws of evolution along with gravity, inertia, thermodynamics, relativity, entropy and a plethora of other natural laws: known and unknown. Evolution is here to stay. It's God's Will. You can like it, dislike it, deny it, or simply not care. It doesn't matter. You may as well deny the law of gravity and jump off a cliff.
Thoughts on Evolution and the Duckbill Platypus
Oh platypus, platypus, how could this be?
Have you no logical place on evolution's fine tree?
Perhaps God created you, just as you are.
Or maybe you're an alien from a far distant star.

Did you evolve in the Miocene from a giant obdurodon?
Or perhaps you descended from a Cretaceous steropodon.
You could have been spawned by the devil and his kin.
It could be, they say, 'cause you're ugly as sin.

With parts of some animals found in the muck:
A beaver, an otter, a snake and a duck,
Could a practical joker have sewn you together
With a needle and thread and some worn out shoe leather?

Could Merlin the wizard have conjured you whole
with a wave of his wand and a spell from his scroll?
Could a genetic biologist have found a new way
To create a new platypus from mixed DNA?

Yes platypus, platypus, what can you be?
Have they found you a home on evolution's fine tree?
You may be from Earth or a far distant star.
I really don't care. I love you just as you are.
Not wanting to slight the world's only other extant monotreme genus, I also wrote a poem on the echidna. This one is perhaps somewhat more appropriate for kindergarteners.
The Echidna
The ancient magician said, “Ain't I just fine!”
When he crossed an anteater with a porcupine.

He whooped with joy. “That sure hit the spot.
I made an echidna. I kid you not!”

Echidna tried to have babies; but became such a grouch;
Having babies with spines; made her say, “Ouch!”

The magician replied, “Your pardon I beg.”
He crossed her with a chicken. She loved laying eggs.

“I'll need a new home. Danger's everywhere.
There are foxes, coyotes and a great grizzly bear.”

“I'm here to protect you; and I'll never fail ya.”
The magician flicked his wand, sent echidna to Australia.

Echidna is happy in the land of her dreams.
She's an egg laying mammal, called a monotreme.