Had brought an eagle low,
Who, as he fluttered earthward, came
To learn what caused his woe.
A rubber wolf, Who killed a sheep,
Was tugging at his prey,
When came a lion with a leap,
And snatched the prize away.
A fox could just creep in
And ravenously eat and eat
Until no longer thin.
Were gathered by a jay,
Who wore them pressed against his breast
To make a proud display.
The peacocks, as they watched him strut,
Laughed at the masquerade;
Then, with a shout, they drove him out,
Which left him quite dismayed.
So back among the jays he flew.
They turned on him with scorn.
They screeched, “Absurd and foolish bird!”
And drove him off forlorn.
He who assumes another’s plumes
And flies in search of praise,
Pays for the pose with gibes and foes,