The Fox And The Cat  

The Fox and the Cat as they traveled one day,

With moral discourses cut shorter the way.

"Tis great," says the Fox, "to make justice our guide."

"How Godlike is mercy!" Grimalkin replied.

 

  While thus they proceeded, a Wolf from the wood,

Impatient of hunger and thirsting for blood,

Rushed forth--as he saw the dull shepherd asleep--

And seized for his supper an innocent sheep.

"In vain, wretched victim, for mercy you bleat;

When mutton's at hand," says the Wolf, "I must eat".

 

  The Cat was astonished; the Fox stood aghast,

To see the fell beast at his bloody repast.

"What a wretch!" says the Cat. "Tis the vilest of brutes!

Does he feed upon flesh when there's herbage and roots?"

Cries the Fox: "While our oaks give us acorns so good,

What a tyrant is this, to spill innocent blood!"  

 

Well onward they marched, and they moralized still,

Till they came where some poultry picked chaff by a mill;

Sly Reynard surveyed them with gluttonous eyes,

And made, spite of morals, a pullet his prize.

A mouse, too, that chanced from her covert to stray,

The greedy Grimalkin secured as her prey.

 

A Spider, that sat in her web on the wall,

Perceived the poor victims, and pitied their fall:

She cried, "Of such murders how guiltless am I!"

Then ran to regale on a new-taken fly.

  ~J. Cunningham~

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