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The Puddock
by J M Caie

Click here to listen to this in RealAudio read by Marilyn P Wright

Born and educated In the North-East, Caie was a lecturer in agriculture who became a senior civil servant in the Department of Agriculture. His poems come from his upbringing in the country around Fochabers in Banffshire. ~ez_lsquo~The Puddock~ez_rsquo~ has long been a favourite recitation piece for schools.

A puddock sat by the lochan~ez_rsquo~s brim, 
An~ez_rsquo~ he thocht there was never a puddock like him. 
He sat on his hurdies, he waggled his legs, 
An~ez_rsquo~ cockit his heid as he glowered throu~ez_rsquo~ the seggs. 
The bigsy wee cratur~ez_rsquo~ was feelin~ez_rsquo~ that prood, 
He gapit his mou~ez_rsquo~ an~ez_rsquo~ he croakit oot lood:
~ez_lsquo~Gin ye~ez_rsquo~d a~ez_rsquo~ like tae see a richt puddock,~ez_rsquo~ quo~ez_rsquo~ he, 
~ez_lsquo~Ye~ez_rsquo~ll never, I~ez_rsquo~ll sweer get a better nor me. 
I~ez_rsquo~ve fem~ez_rsquo~lies an~ez_rsquo~ wives an~ez_rsquo~ a weel-plenished hame, 
Wi~ez_rsquo~ drink for my thrapple an~ez_rsquo~ meat for my wame. 
The lasses aye thocht me a fine strappin~ez_rsquo~ chiel. 
An~ez_rsquo~ I ken I~ez_rsquo~m a rale bonny singer as wed. 
I~ez_rsquo~m nae gyaun tae blaw, but the truth I maun tell ~ez_mdash~
I believe I~ez_rsquo~m the verra MacPuddock himsel~ez_rsquo~.'

A heron was hungry an~ez_rsquo~ needin~ez_rsquo~ rae sup, 
Sae he nabbit th~ez_rsquo~ puddock and gollup~ez_rsquo~t him up; 
Syne runkled his feathers: ~ez_lsquo~A peer thing,~ez_rsquo~ quo~ez_rsquo~ he, 
~ez_lsquo~But ~ez_mdash~ puddocks is nae fat they eesed tae be.~ez_rsquo~

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