The City and Country Rat

A City Rat of great renown,
Of pretty wit, and manners fine;
When "all the world" was out of town,
Went - with a country friend to dine.
A very polished Rat was he,
Of taste correct, as you shall see.
The country Rat was very proud,
To see his cousin from the Town;
He welcomed him, in accents loud,
And brought his best provisions down.
Plied him with bacon, bread, and cheese,
And tried his very best to please.
The dinner done - our city friend,
Whose dainty soul was sorely tried;
With many a bow, and courteous smile,
Declared himself quite satisfied.
A crumb or two, brushed from his face,
And picked his teeth, with easy grace.
Then, to his rustic host he said, -
"Excuse me, sir but I must say,
That in this wretched country place;
Your talents rare are thrown away.
I pray you, then, come home with me,
And how we live in town, you'll see."
It was enough - so off they set,
And by the time that night came down;
All travel-stained, and hungry, they,
Were glad enough to see the town.
And then, with soft and stealthy feet,
Ran swiftly through the silent streets.
They reached a large and handsome house,
And creeping through the grand saloon;
All breathless, found themselves at last,
Snug, in a well set dining room.
The guests were gone, no servants there -
But stores of rich, and dainty fare.
Then with a grave, and courtly grace,
The well-bred Rat began to dine;
And helped his hungry, rustic friend,
To fish and fowl, and rarest wine.
"Drink deep," he said, "and banish fear,
No Cat or Dog, can reach us here!"
"This is the way we always live,
With ev'ry comfort, free from pain;
I hardly think you'll wish to go,
And try your country life again."
Just then with growls, and fearful din,
A savage dog, came bounding in!
He sprang upon the table straight,
And broke some precious china-ware;
But he was just, a though too late,
And didn't catch the pretty pair!
They heard the monster's warning cry,
And found a hole of refuge nigh.
Then, said the panting country Rat,
As soon as he his breath could gain;
"I've seen enough of city life,
I'll seek my country home again.
Sweet peace of mind awaits me there,
More wholesome than the richest fare." [more info]

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