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The Two-Legs


Alice C. Bateman

May 03/03

In the old Spiney Woods where pine trees used to dwell
A critter told me he'd a story to tell

I said, well then critter, why don't you sit down
I've got a few minutes 'fore I head back to town

He said well, Zeke and me - that's him by the tree -
We been seein' some stuff we don't like to see...

Go on, I prompted, as his whiskers shook
Look around you, he sighed, take a really good look

You see this great forest that once was our home
Now it's gotten so small, there's nowhere left to roam

Them boxes they build for the two-legged folk
Are stealing our space and it ain't no joke

Even the air in this smaller home stinks
Has something to do with those two-legs, I think

While the big one was talking, Zeke he moved in real close
Said, you got any idea what hurts us the most?

It's the noise, all the sounds that the two-legged's bring
With all that racket, we can't hear a thing

A bear could sneak up and have us for a snack
'Cause we couldn't hear with the rackety-rack

That's right, said the first one in his deeper voice
They just moved right in, didn't give us a choice

Nobody asked us if we minded the change
They just came right on in, started to rearrange

My favouritist tree, little Zeke then spoke up
Why I loved that tree since I was a pup

Two hundred years old if she was a day
Always spread out her branches, gave us room to play

Then one day they came here with their noisy things
Didn't care about us or all our playthings

They scared all the birds, critters here on the ground
Now me an' old Zack, the only ones're around

We're so lonely now, Zack picked up the story
And we'd like to know if the two-legs are sorry

Do they care what they're doing to any of us
We try to be quiet and not make a fuss

But we'd like you to tell them, oh stranger so kind
What some of us critters have got on our mind

Gonna talk to the wind, our friend who's so strong
We'll say blow really hard, take those boxes along

Maybe take all the two-legs that're stored up in them
Maybe build them some structure, put them in the pens

Do the same thing to them that they did to Zack's brother
To his sister, his aunt, and to my own dear mother

Throw them out of their homes, don't give them nowhere new
Or maybe just build them a two-legged zoo

Throw examples in cages for us critters to visit
That is not what you picture I don't think, now is it?

Well now, kind stranger, will you carry our story?
Zeke then chimed in, forehead creased up with worry

We've heard if the two-legs don't grow some respect
They're just about done, we bin told to expect

With that my eyebrows near rose to my hair
Sure, I'll get your story to those folks out there

And I'll pray that your tale might do someone some good
Saving some other critters their old neighbourhood


{This came to me today on a bus trip through the Canadian Rocky Mountains.
Zack and Zeke are Raccoons.  It will be an illustrated book.  Alice}

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