The Fox and the Grapes

Upon the vine, a gleaming purple tempt,

Ripe fruit did hang, and whisp’r nigh to slip,

As if it might, by Wind’s perfection kempt,

Fall soft to ground and welcome Fox’s nip;

Long lay Sly Fox in wait with eager eye,

Surveying Grape with silent, still, revere,

Until with whine, he loos’d impatient cry

And leapt with hungry claws the vines to shear;

Yet dangled tempt, quite madd’ning out of reach,

As with a bounce Fox whirled to try again,

Then leapt and twirled, a frenzy of beseech

That failed to move his Precious, would be win;

Exhausted, Fox turned sharp from Nature’s bower

And flicked his tail, “Those Grapes are prob’ly sour!”

*     *     *     *     *

Mr. Plow Man

The Plow Man has it in for us.

He came last year and plowed our long driveway,

Yet afterwards he showed up unannounced,

Demanding cash for pay immediately.

I have no problem paying plows for hire,

The work is tough, especially in ice,

But when I’m poor, with income sadly sparse

An advance call for planning would be nice;

I know not what was said outside the house,

I stayed indoors where it was nice and warm,

But next I knew, an angry shout did fright

And in Fell whirl away Plow Man did storm;

We paid Plow Man, last year, for his fine work,

It’s not as if we skimped upon his bill;

If he’s upset because we talked him down,

It’s his own fault for bowing to our Will;

Now, this year, he hasn’t come at all,

And that’s just fine, (I’m good at shoveling),

But the huge pile of snow he leaves behind

At our drive’s head is most irritating;

Its not as if an incidental swing

Of his huge blade did knock a bit of white,

Out of his way he goes meandering

To gather massive drifts for us to spite;

This was amusing the first couple times,

(A man my dad’s age acting such a child),

But when the pile is half as tall as I

And just as wide, it’s harder to stay mild;

What satisfaction can he poss’bly gain

From watching someone toiling at his whim?

It’s not as if we’ll hire him back for this,

Such disrespect is only hurting him.

To gather drifts so high our cause to spite

He leaves large tracts unplowed across the way,

And over there the neighbors drive about

And they’re the ones whom now his bill doth pay;

It makes no sense to my small poet’s mind,

Holding a grudge so long for unknown slight,

But snow doth melt and mine arms have grown strong,

And so I shrug and shovel with due might;

And afterwards, today I stepped across:

‘Gainst virgin white, I wrote, “Conspicuous.”