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Rudyard kipling

Rudyard Kipling

POEMS
FOLLOWERS
11

FATHER, Mother, and Me
Sister and Auntie say
All the people like us are We,
And every one else is They.
And They live over the sea,
While We live over the way,
But —would you believe it? —They look upon We
As only a sort of They!
We eat pork and beef
With cow—horn—handled knives.
They who gobble Their rice off a leaf,
Are horrified out of Their lives;
And They who live up a tree,
And feast on grubs and clay,
(Isn’t it scandalous?) look upon We
As a simply disgusting They!

We shoot birds with a gun.
They stick lions with spears.
Their full—dress is un—.
We dress up to Our ears.
They like Their friends for tea.
We like Our friends to stay;
And, after all that, They look upon We
As an utterly ignorant They!

We eat kitcheny food.
We have doors that latch.
They drink milk or blood,
Under an open thatch.
We have Doctors to fee.
They have Wizards to pay.
And (impudent heathen!) They look upon We
As a quite impossible They!

All good people agree,
And all good people say,
All nice people, like Us, are We
And every one else is They:
But if you cross over the sea,
Instead of over the way,
You may end by (think of it!) looking on We
As only a sort of They!

IF I were hanged on the highest hill,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
I know whose love would follow me still,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
If I were drowned in the deepest sea,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
I know whose tears would come down to me,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were damned of body and soul,
I know whose prayers would make me whole,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

THE Camel’s hump is an ugly lump
Which well you may see at the Zoo;
But uglier yet is the hump we get
From having too little to do.

Kiddies and grown—ups too—oo—oo,
If we haven’t enough to do—oo—oo,
We get the hump—
Cameelious hump—
The hump that is black and blue!

We climb out of bed with a frouzly head,
And a snarly—yarly voice.
We shiver and scowl and we grunt and we growl
At our bath and our boots and our toys;

And there ought to be a corner for me
(And I know’ there is one for you)
When we get the hump—
Cameelious hump—
The hump that is black and blue!

The cure for this ill is not to sit still,
Or frowst with a book by the fire;
But to take a large hoe and a shovel also,
And dig till you gently perspire;

And then you will find that the sun and the wind,
And the Djinn of the Garden too,
Have lifted the hump—
The horrible hump—
The hum that is black and blue!

I get it as well as you—oo—oo—
If I haven’t enough to do—oo—oo!
We all get hump—
Cameelious hump—
Kiddies and grown—ups too!

The Doorkeepers of Zion,
  They do not always stand
In helmet and whole armour,
  With halberds in their hand;
But, being sure of Zion,
  And all her mysteries,
They rest awhile in Zion,
Sit down and smile in Zion;
Ay, even jest in Zion;
  In Zion, at their ease.

The Gatekeepers of Baal,
  They dare not sit or lean,
But fume and fret and posture
  And foam and curse between;
For being bound to Baal,
  Whose sacrifice is vain,
Their rest is scant with Baal,
They glare and pant for Baal,
They mouth and rant for Baal,
  For Baal in their pain!

But we will go to Zion,
  By choice and not through dread,
With these our present comrades
  And those our present dead;
And, being free of Zion
  In both her fellowships,
Sit down and sup in Zion —
Stand up and drink in Zion
Whatever cup in Zion
  Is offered to our lips!

BEFORE

'TWAS NOT while England’s sword unsheathed
Put half a world to flight,
Nor while their new—built cities breathed
Secure behind her might;
Not while she poured from Pole to Line
Treasure and ships and men—
These worshippers at Freedoms shrine
They did not quit her then!

Not till their foes were driven forth
By England o’er the main—
Not till the Frenchman from the North
Had gone with shattered Spain;
Not till the clean—swept oceans showed
No hostile flag unrolled,
Did they remember what they owed
To Freedom—and were bold!

AFTER

THE SNOW lies thick on Valley Forge,
The ice on the Delaware,
But the poor dead soldiers of King George
They neither know nor care.

Not though the earliest primrose break
On the sunny side of the lane,
And scuffling rookeries awake
Their England’ s spring again.

They will not stir when the drifts are gone,
Or the ice melts out of the bay:
And the men that served with Washington
Lie all as still as they.

They will not stir though the mayflower blows
In the moist dark woods of pine,
And every rock—strewn pasture shows
Mullein and columbine.

Each for his land, in a fair fight,
Encountered, strove, and died,
And the kindly earth that knows no spite
Covers them side by side.

She is too busy to think of war;
She has all the world to make gay;
And, behold, the yearly flowers are
Where they were in our fathers’ day!

Golden—rod by the pasture—wall
When the columbine is dead,
And sumach leaves that turn, in fall,
Bright as the blood they shed.

Up the steep Official Stair
With rapidity amazing
Clomb, his seniors bedazing,
Into Heights of Glory blazing,
With the Stars that mortals wear
On their dress—coat breasts at Levees,
Hastings Clive Macaulay Bews.

And they stood below and cursed—
All the juniors of his calling—
With a fluency appalling,
Betting on his chance of falling;
Prayed to see the bubble burst
Of the reputation first—class
Of this Idler of the worst class.

In his office, scorned of all,
Saddle—hued, grotesque of feature,
Worked a weird, bi—racial creature,
Far too humble—souled to meet your
Eye—Concepcion Gabral;
Santu Ribiera Paul
Luz Concepcion Gabral.

[What he did I cannot say.
Did he give or take instruction,
Break the eggs for Bevys’ suction,
Work that highly paid deduction
Which—while sparing Bevys’ pay—
Cut in graduated stages
Everybody’s else’s wages?]

This I know, and this is all:
For his labours unremitting
Came a recompense befitting
Bevys, plus a well—paid flitting
Into Burmahorbengal;
But Concepcion, the able,
Stirred not from the office—table.

This I know, and this is all:
There were hints unfit for hinting,
There was speech unfit for printing,
There were protests without stinting,
Heard in Burmahorbengal—
Crudely, nudely, rudely, rawly,
Saying, `Take back this Macaulay’.

In the brutal, bitter wit
Much affected east of Suez,
Where the Englishman so few is,
And a man must work or rue his
Incapacity and quit,
Fell innumerable bastings
Upon Clive Macaulay Hastings.

With the Hand of Common Sense
On the Waistband of Despair, they
Raised that ruler high in air, they
Stripped him miserably bare, they
On the soft flesh of Pretence
In the face of India, smacked him,
Then, as shop—boys say, they `sacked’ him.

You may find him still to—day
'Twixt Peshawur and Colaba,
Derelict without a harbour,
A civilian Micawber
(Spare the rhyme who read the lay!)
In `officiating’ fetters,
Doing duty for his betters.

And—oh, irony supreme!
All the Gods who rule the Nation
Have withheld the explanation
Of his open degradation
From the man they justly deem
An administrative novice
Trusting blindly to his office.

This I know, and this is all
(He is ignorant as ever)
And if Fate decrees he never
Meet again the humble, clever,
Quick—to—grasp—ideas Gabral,
Sure am I his end, alas!
Will be madness or—Madras.'

Now Chil the Kite brings home the night
                         That Mang the Bat sets free—
                         The herds are shut in byre and hut,
                         For loosed till dawn are we.
                         This is the hour of pride and power,
                         Talon and tush and claw.
                         Oh, hear the call!—Good hunting all
                         That keep the Jungle Law!
                                 Mowgli’s Brothers.

His spots are the joy of the Leopard: his horns are the Buffalo’s pride,
Be clean, for the strength of the hunter is known by the gloss of his hide.
If ye find that the bullock can toss you,  or the heavy-browed Sambhur can gore;
Ye need not stop work  to inform us.  We  knew it ten seasons before.
Oppress not the cubs of the stranger, but hail them as Sister and Brother,
For though they are little and fubsy   it may be the Bear is their mother.
“There  is  none  like  to  me! ”  says  the  Cub  in  the  pride  of  his earliest  kill;
Butt the Jungle is large and the  Cub he is small  Let him think and  be  still.
                                                     Kaa’s Hunting.

          The stream is shrunk —the pool is dry,
          And we be comrades, thou and I;
          With fevered jowl and dusty flank
          Each jostling each along the bank;
          And, by one drouthy fear made still,
          Forgoing thought of quest or kill.
          Now 'neath his dam the fawn may see,
          The lean Pack-wolf as cowed as he,
          And the tall buck, unflinching, note
          The fangs that tore his father’s throat.
          The pools are shrunk —the streams are dry,
          And we be playmates, thou and I,
          Till yonder cloud —Good Hunting! —loose
          The rain that breaks our Water Truce.
                                                            How Fear Came.

          What of the hunting, hunter bold?
            Brother, the watch was long and cold.
          What of the quarry ye went to kill?
             Brother, he crops in the jungle still.
          Where is the power that made your pride?
             Brother, it ebbs from my  flank and side.
          Where is the haste that ye hurry by?
             Brother, I go to my lair to die!
                                                "Tiger-Tiger!"

    Veil them  cover them, wall them round—
        Blossom, and creeper, and weed—
    Let us forget the sight and the sound,
        The smell and the touch of the breed!
    Fat black ash by the altar-stone,
        Here is the white-foot rain
    And the does bring forth in the fields unsown,
        And none shall affright them again;
    And the blind walls crumble, unknown, o’erthrown,
        And none shall inhabit again!
                                            Letting in the Jungle.

These are the Four that are never content, that have never be filled since the Dews began—
Jacala’s mouth, and the glut of the Kite, and the hands of the Ape, and the Eyes of Man.
                                 The King’s Ankus.

For our white and our excellent nights—for the nights of swift running,
   Fair ranging, far seeing, good hunting, sure cunning!
For the smells of the dawning, untainted, ere dew has departed!
For the rush through the mist, and the quarry blind-started!
For the cry of our mates when the sambhur has wheeled and is standing at bay!
        For the risk and the riot of night!
        For the sleep at the lair-mouth by day!
        It is met, and we go to the fight.
        Bay! O bay!
                                      Red Dog.

  Man goes to Man! Cry the challenge through the Jungle!
    He that was our Brother goes away.
  Hear, now, and judge, O ye People of the Jungle, —
    Answer, who can turn him —who shall stay?

  Man goes to Man! He is weeping in the Jungle:
    He that was our Brother sorrows sore!
  Man goes to Man! (Oh, we loved him in the Jungle!)
   To the Man-Trail where we may not follow more.
                                  The Spring Running.

          At the hole where he went in
          Red-Eye called to Wrinkle-Skin.
          Hear what little Red-Eye saith:
          “Nag, come up and dance with death! ”

          Eye to eye and head to head,
             (Keep the measure, Nag.)
          This shall end when one is dead;
             (At thy pleasure, Nag.)

          Turn for turn and twist for twist—
             (Run and hide thee, Nag.)
          Hah! The hooded Death has missed!
            ( Woe betide thee, Nag!)
                                 Rikki-Tikki-Tavi.

Oh! hush thee, my baby, the night is behind us,
  And black are the waters that sparkled so green.
The moon, o’er the combers, looks downward to find us
  At rest in the hollows that rustle between.
Where billow meets billow, there soft be thy pillow;
  Ah, weary wee flipperling, curl at thy ease!
The storm shall not wake thee, nor shark overtake thee,
  Asleep in the arms of the slow-swinging seas.
                                     The White Seal.

         You mustn’t swim till you’re six weeks old,
           Or your head will be sunk by your heels;
         And summer gales and Killer Whales
           Are bad for baby seals.
         Are bad for baby seals, dear rat,
           As bad as bad can be.
         But splash and grow strong,
         And you can’t be wrong,
           Child of the Open Sea!
                                    The White Seal.

I will remember what I was. I am sick of rope and chain —
  I will remember my old strength and all my forest-affairs.
I will not sell my back to man for a bundle of sugarcane.
  I will go out to my own kind, and the wood-folk in their lairs.

I will go out until the day, until the morning break,
  Out to the winds’ untainted kiss, the waters’ clean caress.
I will forget my ankle-ring and snap my picket-stake.
  I will revisit my lost loves, and playmates masterless!
                                                    Toomai of the Elephants.

  The People of the Eastern Ice, they are melting like the snow—
  They beg for coffee and sugar; they go where the white men go.
  The People of the Western Ice, they learn to steal and fight;
  They sell their furs to the trading-post; they sell their souls to the white.
  The People of the Southern Ice, they trade with the whaler’s crew;
  Their women have many ribbons, but their tents are torn and few.
  But the People of the Elder Ice, beyond the white man’s ken —
  Their spears are made of the narwhal-horn, and they are the last of the Men!
                                             Quiquern.

When ye say to Tabaqui, “My Brother!” when ye call the Hyena to meat,
Ye may cry the Full Truce with Jacala-the Belly that runs on four feet.
                                   The Undertakers.

        The night we felt the earth would move
          We stole and plucked him by the hand,
        Because we loved him with the love
          That knows but cannot understand.

        And when the roaring hillside broke,
          And all our world fell down in rain,
        We saved him, we the Little Folk;
          But lo! he does not come again!

       Mourn now, we saved him for the sake
         Of such poor love as wild ones may.
       Mourn ye! Our brother will not wake,
         And his own kind drive us away!
                         The Miracle of Purun Bhagat.

ENGLAND is a cosy little country,
  Excepting for the draughts along the floor.
And that is why you’re told,
When the passages are cold:
  “Darling, you’ve forgot to shut the Door!”

The Awful East Wind blows it–
Pussy on the Hearthrug shows it,
Aunty at the Writing—table knows it—
  “Darling, you’ve forgot to shut the Door!”

Shut-shut-shut the Door, my darling!
  Always shut the Door behind you, but
You can go when you are old
Where there isn’t any cold–
  So there isn’t any Door that need be shut!
                       And–
The deep Verandah shows it–
The pale Magnolia knows it–
And the bold, white Trumpet-flower blows it:-
  There isn’t any Door that need be shut!

The piping Tree—toad knows it—
The midnight Firefly shows it
And the Beams of the Moon disclose it:-
  There isn’t any Door that need be shut!

The milky Beaches know it–
The silky Breezes blow it–
And the Shafts of the Sunrise show it:-
  There isn’t any Door that need be shut!

What is a woman that you forsake her,
And the hearth-fire and the home-acre,
To go with the old grey Widow-maker?

She has no house to lay a guest in—
But one chill bed for all to rest in,
That the pale suns and the stray bergs nest in.

She has no strong white arms to fold you,
But the ten-times-fingering weed to hold you—
Out on the rocks where the tide has rolled you.

Yet, when the signs of summer thicken,
And the ice breaks, and the birch-buds quicken,
Yearly you turn from our side, and sicken—

Sicken again for the shouts and the slaughters.
You steal away to the lapping waters,
And look at your ship in her winter-quarters.

You forget our mirth, and talk at the tables,
The kine in the shed and the horse in the stables—
To pitch her sides and go over her cables.

Then you drive out where the storm-clouds swallow,
And the sound of your oar-blades, falling hollow,
Is all we have left through the months to follow.

Ah, what is Woman that you forsake her,
And the hearth-fire and the home-acre,
To go with the old grey Widow-maker?

If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

17

IN the High and Far-Off Times the Elephant, O Best Beloved, had no trunk. He had only a blackish, bulgy nose, as big as a boot, that he could wriggle about from side to side; but he couldn’t pick up things with it. But there was one Elephant—a new Elephant—an Elephant’s Child—who was full of ‘satiable curtiosity, and that means he asked ever so many questions. And he lived in Africa, and he filled all Africa with his ’satiable curtiosities. He asked his tall aunt, the Ostrich, why her tail-feathers grew just so, and his tall aunt the Ostrich spanked him with her hard, hard claw. He asked his tall uncle, the Giraffe, what made his skin spotty, and his tall uncle, the Giraffe, spanked him with his hard, hard hoof. And still he was full of ‘satiable curtiosity! He asked his broad aunt, the Hippopotamus, why her eyes were red, and his broad aunt, the Hippopotamus, spanked him with her broad, broad hoof; and he asked his hairy uncle, the Baboon, why melons tasted just so, and his hairy uncle, the Baboon, spanked him with his hairy, hairy paw. And still he was full of ’satiable curtiosity! He asked questions about everything that he saw, or heard, or felt, or smelt, or touched, and all his uncles and his aunts spanked him. And still he was full of ‘satiable curtiosity!

One fine morning in the middle of the Precession of the Equinoxes this ’satiable Elephant’s Child asked a new fine question that he had never asked before. He asked, ‘What does the Crocodile have for dinner?’ Then everybody said, ‘Hush!’ in a loud and dretful tone, and they spanked him immediately and directly, without stopping, for a long time.

By and by, when that was finished, he came upon Kolokolo Bird sitting in the middle of a wait-a-bit thorn-bush, and he said, ‘My father has spanked me, and my mother has spanked me; all my aunts and uncles have spanked me for my ’satiable curtiosity; and still I want to know what the Crocodile has for dinner!'

Then Kolokolo Bird said, with a mournful cry, ‘Go to the banks of the great grey—green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees, and find out.’

That very next morning, when there was nothing left of the Equinoxes, because the Precession had preceded according to precedent, this 'satiable Elephant’s Child took a hundred pounds of bananas (the little short red kind), and a hundred pounds of sugar—cane (the long purple kind), and seventeen melons (the greeny-crackly kind), and said to all his dear families, ‘Goodbye. I am going to the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees, to find out what the Crocodile has for dinner.’ And they all spanked him once more for luck, though he asked them most politely to stop.

Then he went away, a little warm, but not at all astonished, eating melons, and throwing the rind about, because he could not pick it up.

He went from Graham’s Town to Kimberley, and from Kimberley to Khama’s Country, and from Khama’s Country he went east by north, eating melons all the time, till at last he came to the banks of the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever—trees, precisely as Kolokolo Bird had said.

Now you must know and understand, O Best Beloved, that till that very week, and day, and hour, and minute, this 'satiable Elephant’s Child had never seen a Crocodile, and did not know what one was like. It was all his ‘satiable curtiosity.

The first thing that he found was a Bi-Coloured-Python-Roc-Snake curled round a rock.

’Scuse me,' said the Elephant’s Child most politely, ‘but have you seen such a thing as a Crocodile in these promiscuous parts?’

‘Have I seen a Crocodile?’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake, in a voice of dretful scorn. ‘What will you ask me next?’

‘Scuse me,’ said the Elephant’s Child, ‘but could you kindly tell me what he has for dinner?’

Then the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake uncoiled himself very quickly from the rock, and spanked the Elephant’s Child with his scalesome, flailsome tail.

‘That is odd,’ said the Elephant’s Child, ‘because my father and my mother, and my uncle and my aunt, not to mention my other aunt, the Hippopotamus, and my other uncle, the Baboon, have all spanked me for my ’satiable curtiosity—and I suppose this is the same thing.

So he said good—bye very politely to the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake, and helped to coil him up on the rock again, and went on, a little warm, but not at all astonished, eating melons, and throwing the rind about, because he could not pick it up, till he trod on what he thought was a log of wood at the very edge of the great grey—green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees.

But it was really the Crocodile, O Best Beloved, and the Crocodile winked one eye—like this!

‘Scuse me,’ said the Elephant’s Child most politely, ‘but do you happen to have seen a Crocodile in these promiscuous parts?’

Then the Crocodile winked the other eye, and lifted half his tail out of the mud; and the Elephant’s Child stepped back most politely, because he did not wish to be spanked again.

‘Come hither, Little One,’ said the Crocodile. ‘Why do you ask such things?’

‘Scuse me,’ said the Elephant’s Child most politely, 'but my father has spanked me, my mother has spanked me, not to mention my tall aunt, the Ostrich, and my tall uncle, the Giraffe, who can kick ever so hard, as well as my broad aunt, the Hippopotamus, and my hairy uncle, the Baboon, and including the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake, with the scalesome, flailsome tail, just up the bank, who spanks harder than any of them; and so, if it’s quite all the same to you, I don’t want to be spanked any more.'

‘Come hither, Little One,’ said the Crocodile, ‘for I am the Crocodile,’ and he wept crocodile—tears to show it was quite true.

Then the Elephant’s Child grew all breathless, and panted, and kneeled down on the bank and said, ‘You are the very person I have been looking for all these long days. Will you please tell me what you have for dinner?’

‘Come hither, Little One,’ said the Crocodile, 'and I’ll whisper.'

Then the Elephant’s Child put his head down close to the Crocodile’s musky, tusky mouth, and the Crocodile caught him by his little nose, which up to that very week, day, hour, and minute, had been no bigger than a boot, though much more useful.

‘I think, said the Crocodile—and he said it between his teeth, like this—’I think to-day I will begin with Elephant’s Child!'

At this, O Best Beloved, the Elephant’s Child was much annoyed, and he said, speaking through his nose, like this, ‘Led go! You are hurtig be!’

Then the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake scuffled down from the bank and said, 'My young friend, if you do not now, immediately and instantly, pull as hard as ever you can, it is my opinion that your acquaintance in the large—pattern leather ulster’ (and by this he meant the Crocodile) ‘will jerk you into yonder limpid stream before you can say Jack Robinson.’

This is the way Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snakes always talk.

Then the Elephant’s Child sat back on his little haunches, and pulled, and pulled, and pulled, and his nose began to stretch. And the Crocodile floundered into the water, making it all creamy with great sweeps of his tail, and he pulled, and pulled, and pulled.

And the Elephant’s Child’s nose kept on stretching; and the Elephant’s Child spread all his little four legs and pulled, and pulled, and pulled, and his nose kept on stretching; and the Crocodile threshed his tail like an oar, and he pulled, and pulled, and pulled, and at each pull the Elephant’s Child’s nose grew longer and longer—and it hurt him hijjus!

Then the Elephant’s Child felt his legs slipping, and he said through his nose, which was now nearly five feet long, ‘This is too butch for be!’

Then the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake came down from the bank, and knotted himself in a double—clove—hitch round the Elephant’s Child’s hind legs, and said, 'Rash and inexperienced traveller, we will now seriously devote ourselves to a little high tension, because if we do not, it is my impression that yonder self—propelling man—of—war with the armour—plated upper deck’ (and by this, O Best Beloved, he meant the Crocodile), 'will permanently vitiate your future career.

That is the way all Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snakes always talk.

So he pulled, and the Elephant’s Child pulled, and the Crocodile pulled; but the Elephant’s Child and the Bi—Coloured—Python—Rock—Snake pulled hardest; and at last the Crocodile let go of the Elephant’s Child’s nose with a plop that you could hear all up and down the Limpopo.

Then the Elephant’s Child sat down most hard and sudden; but first he was careful to say 'Thank you’ to the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake; and next he was kind to his poor pulled nose, and wrapped it all up in cool banana leaves, and hung it in the great grey—green, greasy Limpopo to cool.

‘What are you doing that for?’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake.

‘Scuse me,’ said the Elephant’s Child, ‘but my nose is badly out of shape, and I am waiting for it to shrink.

’Then you will have to wait a long time, said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake. ‘Some people do not know what is good for them.’

The Elephant’s Child sat there for three days waiting for his nose to shrink. But it never grew any shorter, and, besides, it made him squint. For, O Best Beloved, you will see and understand that the Crocodile had pulled it out into a really truly trunk same as all Elephants have to-day.

At the end of the third day a fly came and stung him on the shoulder, and before he knew what he was doing he lifted up his trunk and hit that fly dead with the end of it.

‘Vantage number one!’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake. ’You couldn’t have done that with a mere—smear nose. Try and eat a little now.'

Before he thought what he was doing the Elephant’s Child put out his trunk and plucked a large bundle of grass, dusted it clean against his fore—legs, and stuffed it into his own mouth.

‘Vantage number two!’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake. ’You couldn’t have done that with a mear—smear nose. Don’t you think the sun is very hot here?'

‘It is,’ said the Elephant’s Child, and before he thought what he was doing he schlooped up a schloop of mud from the banks of the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo, and slapped it on his head, where it made a cool schloopy-sloshy mud-cap all trickly behind his ears.

‘Vantage number three!’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake. ’You couldn’t have done that with a mere—smear nose. Now how do you feel about being spanked again?'

‘Scuse me,’ said the Elephant’s Child, ‘but I should not like it at all.’

‘How would you like to spank somebody?’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake.

‘I should like it very much indeed,’ said the Elephant’s Child.

‘Well,’ said the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake, ‘you will find that new nose of yours very useful to spank people with.’

‘Thank you,’ said the Elephant’s Child, 'I’ll remember that; and now I think I’ll go home to all my dear families and try.'

So the Elephant’s Child went home across Africa frisking and whisking his trunk. When he wanted fruit to eat he pulled fruit down from a tree, instead of waiting for it to fall as he used to do. When he wanted grass he plucked grass up from the ground, instead of going on his knees as he used to do. When the flies bit him he broke off the branch of a tree and used it as fly-whisk; and he made himself a new, cool, slushy-squshy mud-cap whenever the sun was hot. When he felt lonely walking through Africa he sang to himself down his trunk, and the noise was louder than several brass bands.

He went especially out of his way to find a broad Hippopotamus (she was no relation of his), and he spanked her very hard, to make sure that the Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake had spoken the truth about his new trunk. The rest of the time he picked up the melon rinds that he had dropped on his way to the Limpopo—for he was a Tidy Pachyderm.

One dark evening he came back to all his dear families, and he coiled up his trunk and said, ‘How do you do?’ They were very glad to see him, and immediately said, ‘Come here and be spanked for your ’satiable curtiosity.'

‘Pooh,’ said the Elephant’s Child. 'I don’t think you peoples know anything about spanking; but I do, and I’ll show you.' Then he uncurled his trunk and knocked two of his dear brothers head over heels.

‘O Bananas!’ said they, ‘where did you learn that trick, and what have you done to your nose?’

‘I got a new one from the Crocodile on the banks of the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River,’ said the Elephant’s Child. ‘I asked him what he had for dinner, and he gave me this to keep.’

‘It looks very ugly,’ said his hairy uncle, the Baboon.

‘It does,’ said the Elephant’s Child. 'But it’s very useful,' and he picked up his hairy uncle, the Baboon, by one hairy leg, and hove him into a hornet’s nest.

Then that bad Elephant’s Child spanked all his dear families for a long time, till they were very warm and greatly astonished. He pulled out his tall Ostrich aunt’s tail—feathers; and he caught his tall uncle, the Giraffe, by the hind-leg, and dragged him through a thorn-bush; and he shouted at his broad aunt, the Hippopotamus, and blew bubbles into her ear when she was sleeping in the water after meals; but he never let any one touch Kolokolo Bird.

At last things grew so exciting that his dear families went off one by one in a hurry to the banks of the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees, to borrow new noses from the Crocodile. When they came back nobody spanked anybody any more; and ever since that day, O Best Beloved, all the Elephants you will ever see, besides all those that you won’t, have trunks precisely like the trunk of the 'satiable Elephant’s Child.

I Keep six honest serving-men:
  (They taught me all I knew)
Their names are What and Where and When
  And How and Why and Who.
I send them over land and sea,
  I send them east and west;
But after they have worked for me,
  I give them all a rest.

I let them rest from nine till five.
  For I am busy then,
As well as breakfast, lunch, and tea,
  For they are hungry men:
But different folk have different views:
  I know a person small—
She keeps ten million serving-men,
  Who get no rest at all!
She sends 'em abroad on her own affairs,
  From the second she opens her eyes—
One million Hows, two million Wheres,
  And seven million Whys!

WINDS of the World, give answer! They are whimpering to and fro—
And what should they know of England who only England know?—
The poor little street—bred people that vapour and fume and brag,
They are lifting their heads in the stillness to yelp at the English Flag!

Must we borrow a clout from the Boer—to plaster anew with dirt?
An Irish liar’s bandage, or an English coward’s shirt?
We may not speak of England; her Flag’s to sell or share.
What is the Flag of England? Winds of the World, declare!

The North Wind blew:—“From Bergen my steel—shod vanguards go;
I chase your lazy whalers home from the Disko floe;
By the great North Lights above me I work the will of God,
And the liner splits on the ice—field or the Dogger fills with cod.

“I barred my gates with iron, I shuttered my doors with flame,
Because to force my ramparts your nutshell navies came;
I took the sun from their presence, I cut them down with my blast,
And they died, but the Flag of England blew free ere the spirit passed.

“The lean white bear hath seen it in the long, long Arctic night,
The musk—ox knows the standard that flouts the Northern Light:
What is the Flag of England? Ye have but my bergs to dare,
Ye have but my drifts to conquer. Go forth, for it is there!”

The South Wind sighed:—“From the Virgins my mid—sea course was ta’en
Over a thousand islands lost in an idle main,
Where the sea—egg flames on the coral and the long—backed breakers croon
Their endless ocean legends to the lazy, locked lagoon.

“Strayed amid lonely islets, mazed amid outer keys,
I waked the palms to laughter—I tossed the scud in the breeze—
Never was isle so little, never was sea so lone,
But over the scud and the palm—trees an English flag was flown.

“I have wrenched it free from the halliard to hang for a wisp on the Horn;
I have chased it north to the Lizard—ribboned and rolled and torn;
I have spread its fold o’er the dying, adrift in a hopeless sea;
I have hurled it swift on the slaver, and seen the slave set free.

“My basking sunfish know it, and wheeling albatross,
Where the lone wave fills with fire beneath the Southern Cross.
What is the Flag of England? Ye have but my reefs to dare,
Ye have but my seas to furrow. Go forth, for it is there!”

The East Wind roared:—“From the Kuriles, the Bitter Seas, I come,
And me men call the Home—Wind, for I bring the English home.
Look—look well to your shipping! By the breath of my mad typhoon
I swept your close—packed Praya and beached your best at Kowloon!

“The reeling junks behind me and the racing seas before,
I raped your richest roadstead—I plundered Singapore!
I set my hand on the Hoogli; as a hooded snake she rose,
And I flung your stoutest steamers to roost with the startled crows.
v “Never the lotus closes, never the wild—fowl wake,
But a soul goes out on the East Wind that died for England’s sake—
Man or woman or suckling, mother or bride or maid—
Because on the bones of the English the English Flag is stayed.

“The desert—dust hath dimmed it, the flying wild—ass knows,
The scared white leopard winds it across the taintless snows.
What is the Flag of England? Ye have but my sun to dare,
Ye have but my sands to travel. Go forth, for it is there!”

The West Wind called:—“In squadrons the thoughtless galleons fly
That bear the wheat and cattle lest street—bred people die.
They make my might their porter, they make my house their path,
Till I loose my neck from their rudder and whelm them all in my wrath.

“I draw the gliding fog—bank as a snake is drawn from the hole,
They bellow one to the other, the frighted ship—bells toll,
For day is a drifting terror till I raise the shroud with my breath,
And they see strange bows above them and the two go locked to death.

“But whether in calm or wrack—wreath, whether by dark or day,
I heave them whole to the conger or rip their plates away,
First of the scattered legions, under a shrieking sky,
Dipping between the rollers, the English Flag goes by.

“The dead dumb fog hath wrapped it—the frozen dews have kissed—
The naked stars have seen it, a fellow—star in the mist.
What is the Flag of England? Ye have but my breath to dare,
Ye have but my waves to conquer. Go forth, for it is there!”