Tomás Ó Cárthaigh
'Ten Ducklings And Three Men' - Poem by Tomás Ó Cárthaigh
'Ten Ducklings and Three Men'
In the quieness of the evening
Towards the end of day,
A duck and ten ducklings
Slowly made their way
Towards a pond at the end of the road
Across a road of traffic lanes ten
Looked upon with amazement
By the DJ and his wife when
They walked by quacking
And to the DJ's surprise
Three duckings fell into a grating
Before his very eyes
And the mother about turned so quick
Her lost young for to find
And lost the rest who walked again across the grating
As duckilings do, behind
Their mother, for where she walks
If safe they can be sure
But it seems somehow
This ducks judgement was poor!
And, oh, the panic of the mother duck
To see her young were gone
And looked for the danger around her
Who took her chicks, each one!
And finally seeing none
She let a wailing cry
The angiush of a grieving mother (duck! ! !)
As she looked to the sky
The last bastion of danger
Of hawks and all their kind
Never of the sewer beneath her feet
Came upon her mind.
And the observing human
Said be must intervene
And save the chicks that were lost
That once behind her had been.
And three shadows with bloodshot eyes
With slowly shuffling feet
Reeking of cheap off-licence alchohol
Came from the flats across the street,
Yes, those men from those flats
From the other side
Men of no morals or charachter
Within those walls reside
And without much explaination
The grill from the street was prised
And one of those rough charachters
Slid in to the sewer, in front of the duck, surprised
And one by one from the mire
Where the DJ and his friend did stand
Ducklings ten, so gingerly
Were found and freed by hand
And as if it were the most natural thing in the world
On seeing all were fine
Mother duck walked down the road
Her ducklings ten, in line.
And neighbours who before were strangers
One who thought the other two were scum and tough
Looked at each other as humans
And the look was enough
One said as they walked away
'I love animals, you see'
And the rich man the DJ
Saw that they were the same as he.
So the next time you see rough people
And at them you look frown
Ask yourself, wuold you climb into a sewer
If ten ducklings fell down?
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