Timothy Catchpole lived in a field
on the edge of a deep, dark wood.
One of a long line of Catchpoles he was,
who tried to do nothing but good.
Home was a nest on an ear of corn,
in a fresh grown field of barley.
On the outskirts of a pretty village,
which folk called, 'Little Harley'
He spent most days foraging for food,
or else tidying his little home.
A harvest mouse doesn't need a lot,
and he was disinclined to roam.
One day, playing 'dead', in the farmer's field,
he overheard something distressing.
Two men discussing the sale of the land,
which Timothy found quite depressing.
They went on to talk about houses and shops,
and destroying a part of the wood.
He didn't know how, or where, or why,
but Tim thought he must stop it, if he could.",
But what to do? He was only small,
and no one would listen to him.
"I must talk to Owl, he's wise," Tim thought,
and off he went, on a whim.
As he neared the edge of the deep, dark wood,
his folly he started to see,
"This is a bit foolhardy," he thought,
"Owls feed on the likes of me."
"What have we here?" asked a big black Crow,
as in front of Timothy he swooped.
"A tasty morsel, I'll be bound."
As he threw back his head and 'whooped'.
"You don't want to eat me, I'm saving your life!"
Shouted Tim, at the top of his voice.
"Why, you little rat, you've no say in that,
it's not like I'm giving you a choice!"
"Please, listen to me and I'll explain,
let me try to make you understand."
Tim took a breath and the words poured out,
about the farmer and selling the land.
"That's nothing to me." Said the Crow with a strut,
and a blink of his gimlet eye.
"What should I care if he builds on his field?
What's it to me? Pray tell, why?"
More confident now, Timothy spoke,
eloquent and without fear.
"What will you eat when the corn is gone,
and us small animals disappear?"
The Crow's beak opened as if to speak,
when the penny dropped in his head.
"I see what you mean." He mused and strutted,
"We'll all be bloomin' well dead!"
"Exactly,"said Tim, "which is why I'm about.
to enter the deep, dark wood.
To ask Owl for his answer to this thorny problem.
Could you help me, if you'd be so good?"
"I like your spirit," said the Crow,
"and, if what you say is true,
the Owl's the very one to help,
stay here!" And away he flew.
Copyright © John Jones | Year Posted 2020