Heinrich Hoffmann

(13 June 1809 - 20 September 1894 / Frankfurt am Main)

The Story of the Man that went out Shooting Poem by Heinrich Hoffmann


This is the man that shoots the hares;
This is the coat he always wears:
With game-bag, powder-horn, and gun
He's going out to have some fun.

He finds it hard, without a pair
Of spectacles, to shoot the hare.
The hare sits snug in leaves and grass
And laughs to see the green man pass.
Now, as the sun grew very hot,
And he a heavy gun had got,
He lay down underneath a tree
And went to sleep, as you may see.
And, while he slept like any top,
The little hare came, hop, hop, hop,
Took gun and spectacles, and then
On her hind legs went off again.

The green man wakes and sees her place
The spectacles upon her face;
And now she's trying all she can
To shoot the sleepy, green-coat man.
He cries and screams and runs away;
The hare runs after him all day
And hears him call out everywhere:
'Help! Fire! Help! The Hare! The Hare!'

At last he stumbled at the well,
Head over ears, and in he fell.
The hare stopped short, took aim and, hark!
Bang went the gun—she missed her mark!

The poor man's wife was drinking up
Her coffee in her coffee-cup;
The gun shot cup and saucer through;
'Oh dear!' cried she; 'what shall I do?'
There lived close by the cottage there
The hare's own child, the little hare;
And while she stood upon her toes,
The coffee fell and burned her nose.
'Oh dear!' she cried, with spoon in hand,
'Such fun I do not understand.'

Submitted: Friday, September 17, 2010

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