Plenty of rush and motion, heave and roar,
To turn their thoughts from things upon the shore;
The day's too calm--I told you that before.
Just mind your line! I tell you that he's there.
I saw him spring up ten feet in the air--
Twelve pounder, if an ounce! Great Mackinaw!
Look! Quick! He's on! The "doctor" in his jaw. . . .
Snapped! Gone! You big fool: worse than any fool!
What did you think to find here in this pool--
A minnow or a shiner--that you tried
With such a jerk to land him on the side
Of this high bank? That was a salmon--fool!
The biggest one that swam within this pool;
The one I saw that jumped twelve feet--not lower;
Would tip the scales at fourteen pounds or more.
Lost--near that rock that's got the log upon it,
Gone--with the leader and the "doctor" on it.
THE sun never shone,
The rain could not fall
On a steadier man than John.
A holy man was John,
And honest withal.
His mates had never heard
Drop from his guarded lip
An idle word,
But twice--first, while on board his ship,
When he had lost his pipe, he swore,
Just a mild damn, and nothing more;
And once he cursed
The government; but then he reckoned
The Lord forgave him for the first,
And justified the second.