(What Uncle William told the Children)
Twelve snails went walking after night.
They’d creep an inch or so,
Then stop and bug their eyes
Some folks . . . are . . . deadly . . . slow.
Twelve snails went walking yestereve,
Led by their fat old king.
They were so dull their princeling had
No sceptre, robe or ring—
Only a paper cap to wear
When nightly journeying.
This king-snail said: “I feel a thought
Within. . . . It blossoms soon. . . .
O little courtiers of mine, . . .
I crave a pretty boon. . . .
Oh, yes . . . (High thoughts with effort come
And well-bred snails are ALMOST dumb.)
“I wish I had a yellow crown
As glistering . . . as . . . the moon.”