The Old Pear Tree groaned
For he didn’t fancy
Reporting the loss of his fruit
To the Master Farmer.

First, this year, there was the
Agricultural Expert’s penultimate disappointment.
No tomatoes to harvest.
Cold night temperature had stunted their growth.

Now a band of Midnight Marauders,
Too close to humans in skill,
Let alone appearance, descended.

The rapacious Raccoon , a horde,
Raped the stately, gentleman-like
Tree of its pommes.

“Two week before they are
Ready for wine, jam or pie.”
Said the hell-bent Leader,
“We’ll eat up, fine enough for us.”

Flanked by his orderlies
The Commander ordered his
Ultimate charge. ‘Scavenger the branches,
Drop the fruit for the underlings below to gather
And head for high ground.

Meanwhile, as the Farmer,
Disappointed for the second time
Had no recourse but to
Feverishly shake his head
And admit,
“Well, they with those long fingered hands,
Bandit-masked eyes,
And sparkling night eyes.
They put on a good show.”

“My bounty, my bounty, stolen cried the Tree
What a crime—thievery.
Unabashed past the misdemeanor of
One fruit pinched, a few here or there,
Not my whole crop.”

“Looks that way, Tree.”
Said Farmer,
With a healthy grin, he
Engaged his electric zapper.
“Looks that way, to me, Old Tree.”

Charlene James Duguid
Amissville, Virginia
August 1, 2021