Sunday, April 23, 2017

Wolf and Mouse Learn Lessons from Each Other - a Poem for Day Twenty-Two of PAD


For today’s prompt, write a fable poem. A fable is a story that conveys a moral, usually told with animal characters.

Artwork by Linda G. Hatton
This Mouse Got Away


Wolf and Mouse Learn Lessons from Each Other

A wolf barreling
through forest dark,
felt his shape
shifting into pine
trunk and leaves
and bark,
and river stones
along dense dirt path
when he came upon 
a skittering mouse 
whose life force
he could not trespass. 

The mousepuffed up 
in the task
of cracking open
an acorn shell
 
refused to give him
the time of day.

Although the mouse felt 

hot breath on his neck, 
he tapped, 
he chewed,
he cursed 
in squeaks 
and chitters 
(the usual language
of such critters).

Just as the wolf said, You’ll never
break through
, the acorn
snapped apart under
those insistent chews. 


Mouse swallowed
the nut meat 

and awarded wolf
the empty shell
to prove persistence
brings about rewards.

When wolf reached down
towards the vacant 

husk, he snuck a stroke
of the rodent’s pelt,
then spun around 

and stole
that vermin’s form.

As wolf stared 

at his brand-new 
shadow,
he gurgled up 

a little grumble.

Well, you’re right, 

I didn’t give in, 
so I finally broke through. 
And now I see how 
perseverance 
wins.

***



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