Editor's Note: Sally Clark's stories and poems have appeared in anthologies and books published by Tyndale House, Thomas Nelson, Howard Books, New World Library, Center Street, Adams Media, and Chronicle Books. Find her at www.sallyclark.info.
A frog and a toad hop into a tavern
where the evening fun has just begun
and the humans have all gone home leaving
jostles of beer and puddles of ale on the floor
and one talkative rat, deep in his cups,
with an outrageous story to boast
about how he drove a coach and six horses
to the King's great castle and delivered a beauty
most rare; how his long tail cracked over
the heads of horses that leapt at his commands;
how his four-fingered paws grew another and held
the reins and himself sporting velvet and silver-trimmed
silks, high, high, high above, as he bounced
and jolted along; he swears, yes, swears,
that the tale is true to the intoxicated swarm of
insects, rodents, lizards, and toads,
his voice rising above their laughter and slaps
on the back and shouts of that's a good one,
that is, you old sot. The rat retires his story,
whiskers quivering as he downs another pint.
C’mon on along, the frog croaks to the toad. I've
heard that down the road there's a bloke,
a mouse this time, claims he's run with a mane
and tail in harness, no less, now this’ll be a good one...
Image by John A. Grimshaw.