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Short poem

Vachel Lindsay (1879-1931)

Two Old Crows

              1Two old crows sat on a fence rail.
              2Two old crows sat on a fence rail,
              3Thinking of effect and cause,
              4Of weeds and flowers,
              5And nature's laws.
              6One of them muttered, one of them stuttered,
              7One of them stuttered, one of them muttered.
              8Each of them thought far more than he uttered.
              9One crow asked the other crow a riddle.
            10One crow asked the other crow a riddle:
            11The muttering crow
            12Asked the stuttering crow,
            13"Why does a bee have a sword to his fiddle?
            14Why does a bee have a sword to his fiddle?"
            15"Bee-cause," said the other crow,
            17B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause."

            18Just then a bee flew close to their rail: --
            19"Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz         zzzzzzzzz         zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZ."
            20And those two black crows
            21Turned pale,
            22And away those crows did sail.
            24B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause.
            25B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause.
            26"Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz         zzzzzzzzz         zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZ."

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Vachel Lindsay, The Chinese Nightingale and Other Poems (New York: Macmillan, 1917): 66-67. PS 3523 I58C5 Robarts Library. Collected Poems (New York: Macmillan, 1923): 146-47.
First publication date: June 1915
Publication date note: Tuck's Magazine (June 1915)
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1998.
Recent editing: 2:2002/3/21

Composition date: 1915
Rhyme: irregularly rhyming

Other poems by Vachel Lindsay