The Cat And The Fox
Source: A Hundred Fables Of La Fontaine
The cat and fox, when saints were all the rage
Together went upon pilgrimage.
Our pilgrims, as a thing of course,
Disputed till their throats were hoarse.
Then, dropping to a lower tone,
They talk'd of this, and talk'd of that,
Till Renard whisper'd to the cat,
"You think yourself a knowing one:
How many cunning tricks have you?
For I've a hundred, old and new,
All ready in my haversack."
The cat replied, "I do not lack,
Though with but one provided;
And, truth to honour, for that matter,
I hold it than a thousand better."
In fresh dispute they sided;
And loudly were they at it, when
Approach'd a mob of dogs and men.
"Now," said the cat, "your tricks ransack,
And put your cunning brains to rack,
One life to save; I'll show you mine--
A trick, you see, for saving nine."
With that, she climb'd a lofty pine.
The fox his hundred ruses tried,
And yet no safety found.
A hundred times he falsified
The nose of every hound.--
Was here, and there, and everywhere,
Above, and under ground;
But yet to stop he did not dare,
Pent in a hole, it was no joke,
To meet the terriers or the smoke.
So, leaping into upper air,
He met two dogs, that choked him there.
_Expedients may be too many,_
_Consuming time to choose and try._
_On one, but that as good as any,_
_'Tis best in danger to rely._
Next: The Monkey And The Cat
Previous: Nothing Too Much