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THE HARE′S EARS. Jean de La Fontaine

The Lion, wounded by some subject′s horn,
Was naturally wroth, and made decree
That all by whom such ornaments were worn
From his domains forthwith should banished be.
Bulls, Rams, and Goats at once obeyed the law:
The Deer took flight, without an hour′s delay.
A timid Hare felt smitten, when he saw
The shadow of his ears, with deep dismay.
He feared that somebody, with eyes too keen,
Might call them horns, they looked so very long.
"Adieu, friend Cricket," whispered he; "I mean
To quit the place directly, right or wrong.
These ears are perilous; and, though I wore
A couple short as any Ostrich wears,
I still should run." The Cricket asked, "What for?
Such ears are only natural in Hares."
"They′ll pass for horns," his frightened friend replied;
"For Unicorn′s appendages, I′m sure.
And folks, if I deny it, will decide
On sending me to Bedlam, as a cure."


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