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His diet was of wheaten bread,

And milk, and oats, and straw ; Thistles, or lettuces instead,

With sand to scour his maw.

On twigs of hawthorn he regal’d,

On pippins' russet peel,
And, when his juicy salads fail'd,

Slic'd carrot pleas'd him well.

A Turkey carpet was his lawn,

Whereon he lov'd to bound, To skip and gambol like a fawn,

And swing his rump around.

His frisking was at ev'ning hours,

For then he lost his fear,
But most before approaching show'rs,

Or when a storm drew near.

Eight years and five round-rolling moons

He thus saw steal away, Dozing out all his idle noons,

And ev'ry night at play.

I kept him for his humour's sake,

For he would oft beguile My heart of thoughts, that made it ache,

And force me to a smile.

But now beneath this walnut shade

He finds his long last home,
And waits in snug concealment laid,

Till gentler Puss shall come.

He still more aged feels the shocks,

From which no care can save, And, partner once of Tiney's box,

Must soon partake his grave.

William Cowper.

The Tiger
TIGER, tiger

, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry ?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes ?
On what wings dare he aspire ?
What the hand dare seize thy fire ?

And what shoulder and what art
Could twist the sinews of thy heart ?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand formed thy dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain ?
In what furnace was thy brain ?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,

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Did He smile His work to see?
Did He who made the lamb make thee?

Tiger, tiger, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry ?

William Blake,

COMPRESSED NATURAL HISTORY

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