The Duck

A poet's horror is the duck
Whose native sound should be, "Cluck-cluck."

As if to mock, as if to sneer,
He goes, "Quack-quack, " in voice quite clear.

"I am no chicken, "says the duck
Who on the water shows his pluck.

He turns abruptly from the bank,
Avoids a branch and skirts a plank.

He churns the water in his wake
And gives his comely head a shake.

Serenely calm upon the pond,
He marks out distant points beyond.

An ancient classic ship of down,
His colors are a lovely brown.

He'll find a haven out of sight.
Or voyage back before the night.

I watch you with affection, friend;
You stir vague dreams I yet defend.

For though our speech is not the same,
We move within a common frame.

But now I must confess the truth,
And this I do with no small ruth;

Though I'm a man and you're a duck,
Alas, it's I who go, "Cluck-cluck."

by David L. Hyde

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