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This poem is often wrongly thought to be by Robert W Service. It is published here to the memory of Hugh Antoine D'Arcy, its rightful father.
An Evening with the Bard of the Yukon, July 18 th 2003 at 20.30pm in the Town-Hall of Lancieux, Brittany.
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Eels

Published by Webmaster on 07/30/2003 (2414 reads)
Let poets sing the joy of Spring

Eels

Let poets sing the joy of Spring
    As I have in my time,
But now I seek the lyre to tweak
    Of less exalted rhyme.
A simple lay of every day
    More to my mood appeals:
Let me revive the memory I've
    OF EELS.

Oh! Have you ever, daft with joy,
    On holiday from school,
Sloshed up a burn, a bare-foot boy,
    From gold to silver pool?
Green weed streams in the glassy flood,
    Then suddenly you feel
Between your toes, inch deep in mud,
    The wiggle of an eel.

You stomp down hard and grab it tight,
    Your hands like bands of steel;
It wriggles like a streak of light,
    Then nowhere is your eel.
Yet what a whopping one it was,
    And how you darn your luck;
And stealthily you tread because
    It's still there in the muck.

Then once again you tread on it,
    Embedded in the slime,
And though it squiggles quite a bit,
    You've got it clinched this time.
You take it home with heart aglow,
    For Ma to fry or pot,
Then sigh a little, for it's so
    Much smaller than you thought.

I've fished the world of sea  or shore
    For salmon, trout and pike;
For bass, bluegill and albacore,
    For tuna and the like.
Yet never have I known the joy
    In thrill of singing reel
As when a bare-foot, eight year boy
    I grabbed an eight inch eel.


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