A poem by:

 

Ben Dunk.

 

First published in 1968 in: Panther Science Fiction entitled: Frontier of Going by Panther Books

 

An anthology of space poetry: selected by John Fairfax.

 

At least a second addition was published.

 

Turtle Turn.

 

Surgeons lifted the giant turtle on to the operating table,

an amphibious reptile with grafted human legs and limbs.

Already pitiable.

Now the master stroke of surgical whims.

A human brain implant, specially selected

  with ‘high intelligence quotient’,

cold-stored for this ‘great-day’.

 

Hours later the creature lay,

wedged in a cot, filled with hay.

A contemporated patient,

the answer to space-men’s prayers.

Having natural hypothermia,

capable of survival underwater,

or changes in air pressures,

and shielded by a carapace.

 

“We’ve done it! a brain, a human brain, how clever!”

Visions of universological explorations of many kinds.

by this hybrid, swirled their minds.

Ability to traverse rough terrain on two legs,

work out human-type problems,

turn knobs with fingers and thumbs,

and lay eggs.