Page:An argosy of fables.djvu/447

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.

379
SPANISH FABLES


As watchful for my master's weal.
Throughout the night I keep aloof
A host of robbers from his roof,
And guard from thee and thine the hoard
Of dainties that should crown his board."


On this the Mouse withdrew again
Into its hole, and answered then:
"Henceforth, since thou art faithful. Mice
Shall call fidelity a vice."


'Tis ever thus, for we commend
The smallest virtues in a friend;
While in a foe we should abhor it
And even damn the fellow for it.

(Iriarte, Literary Fables. Translated for Blackwood's Magazine.)


THE SWAN AND THE LINNET

AS once a Linnet on a tree
 Was piping like a lover's lute,
A Swan exclaimed, "All birds should be.
 When I am nigh, entranced and mute;
For none can hope to vie with me,
 A vocalist of such repute!


"It heeds me not, but warbles still—
 Was ever songster half so vain?