THE LILAC FAIRY BOOK - online childrens book

A Collection of Illustrated classic fairy tales for children by Andrew Lang

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168                THE WONDERFUL TUNE
one would wish to drink with of a hot summer's day ; •and he had rhymed out all about the dancing fishes so neatly that it would be a thousand pities not to give you his verses ; so here they are in English :
The big seals in motion, Like waves of the ocean,
Or gouty feet prancing, Came heading the gay fish, Crabs, lobsters, and cray-fish,
Determined on dancing.
The sweet sounds they followed, The gasping cod swallow'd—
'Twas wonderful, really; And turbot and flounder, 'Mid fish that were rounder,
Just caper'd as gaily.
John-dories came tripping ; Dull hake, by their skipping,
To frisk it seem'd given ; Bright mackrel went springing, Like small rainbows winging
Their flight up to heaven.
The whiting and haddock Left salt water paddock
This dance to be put in ; Where skate with flat faces Edged out some old plaices ;
But soles kept their footing.
Sprats and herrings in powers Of silvery showers
All number out-numbered; And great ling so lengthy Was there in such plenty
The shore was encumber'd.
The scollop and oyster Their two shells did roister,
Like castanets flitting ; While limpets moved clearly, And rocks very nearly
With laughter were splitting.
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