A poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The full title is "The Raven: A Christmas Tale Told by A Schoolboy to His Little Brothers and Sisters." (The irony of the title will become apparent upon reading.)
Underneath an old oak tree
There was of swine a huge company,
That grunted as they crunched the mast:
For that was ripe, and fell full fast.
Then they trotted away, for the wind grew high:
One acorn they left, and no more might you spy.
Next came a Raven, that liked not such folly:
He belonged, they did say, to the witch Melancholy
Blacker was he than blackest jet,
Flew low in the rain, and his feathers not wet.
He picked up the acorn and buried it straight
By the side of a river both deep and great.
Where then did the Raven go?
He went high and low,
Over hill, over dale, did the black Raven go.
Many Autumns, many Springs
Traveled he with wandering wings:
Many Summers, many Winters -
I can't tell half his adventures.
At length he came back, and with him a She,
And the acorn was grown to a tall oak tree
They built them a nest in the topmost bough,
And young ones they had, and were happy enow.
But soon came a Woodman in leathern guise,
His brow, like a pent-house, hung over his eyes.
He'd an axe
in his hand, not a word he spoke,
But with many a hem! and a sturdy stroke,
At length he brought down the poor Raven's own oak
His young ones were killed; for they could not depart,
And their mother did die of a broken heart
The boughs from the trunk the Woodman did sever;
And they floated it down on the course of the river.
They sawed it in planks, and its bark they did strip,
And with this tree and others they made a good ship.
The ship, it was launched; but in sight of the land
Such a storm there did rise as no ship could withstand.
It bulged on a rock, and the waves rush'd in fast:
Round and round flew the raven, and cawed to the blast.
He heard the last shriek of the perishing soul
See! see! o'er the topmast the mad water rolls!
riding home on a cloud he did meet,
And he thank’d him again and again for this treat,
For they had taken his all and REVENGE
, IT WAS SWEET!
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