Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

(28 August 1749 – 22 March 1832 / Frankfurt am Main)

The Fox And The Crane - Poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

-->

ONCE two persons uninvited

Came to join my dinner table;
For the nonce they lived united,

Fox and crane yclept in fable.

Civil greetings pass'd between us

Then I pluck'd some pigeons tender
For the fox of jackal-genius,

Adding grapes in full-grown splendour.

Long-neck'd flasks I put as dishes

For the crane, without delaying,
Fill'd with gold and silver fishes,

In the limpid water playing.

Had ye witness'd Reynard planted

At his flat plate, all demurely,
Ye with envy must have granted:

"Ne'er was such a gourmand, surely!"

While the bird with circumspection

On one foot, as usual, cradled,
From the flasks his fish-refection

With his bill and long neck ladled.

One the pigeons praised,--the other,

As they went, extoll'd the fishes,
Each one scoffing at his brother

For preferring vulgar dishes.


*

If thou wouldst preserve thy credit,

When thou askest folks to guzzle
At thy hoard, take care to spread it

Suited both for bill and muzzle.


Comments about The Fox And The Crane by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

There is no comment submitted by members..



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: fish, brother, silver, water, fishing



Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 1, 2004



[Report Error]