The Camel and the Floating Sticks (French Folk Tale)

Folk Tales, French Folk Tales3002

The first who saw the humpback”d camel

Fled off for life; the next approach”d with care;

The third with tyrant rope did boldly dare

The desert wanderer to trammel.

Such is the power of use to change

The face of objects new and strange;

Which grow, by looking at, so tame,

They do not even seem the same.

And since this theme is up for our attention,

A certain watchman I will mention,

Who, seeing something far

Away upon the ocean,

Could not but speak his notion

That ”twas a ship of war.

Some minutes more had past,:

A bomb-ketch ”twas without a sail,

And then a boat, and then a bale,

And floating sticks of wood at last!

Full many things on earth, I wot,

Will claim this tale,–and well they may;

They”re something dreadful far away,

But near at hand–they”re not.

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