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To a Mouse ©

On seeing Rabbie plough up its nest.
by Robert Burns's cat

Ian Barclay
Muscat, Oman
2001

1.
Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim'rous beastie,
O, what a panic's in thy breastie!
Full well ye start awa sae hasty,
Wi' squeak an' squeal,
Forcin' me tae rin an' chase thee,
For my next meal.

2.
Wi' a' the fields laid bare an' waste,
Thou clearly saw me slinkin' past,
An' safely up your reedy mast,
Thou thought to stay,
Till crash! A poet's ploughshare cast,
Its feet away.

3.
That wee bit heap o' leaves an' stibble,
Has oft' denied my breakfast nibble,
But now it's just a pile o' rubble,
An' you're laid bare,
To thole the winter's sleety dribble,
An' feline stare.

4.
As soon as Rabbie's eye had spied ye,
He stopped, an' he immortalised ye,
He'd ha' been better to advised ye,
To save your neck,
Than write lines to be plagiarised,
By John Steinbeck.

5.
As Rabbie ploughs away in gloom,
An' prophesies his future doom,
He luckily does not look roon,
Wi' horror abject,
To see his pussycat consume,
His latest subject.


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