The song of ‘What the…?’

Lost in sleep, all warm and cosy,
Wishing morning to perdition,
Dreaming deeply, all unconscious,
Snuggled down in prime position…
Wake abruptly, bedclothes flying,
Primal instinct, fear obeying,
Stand a moment, get my bearings,
Seek the source of awful baying…

There, beside the garden window
Stands a vision, evil-seeming
Black as night with heckles raising
Growling deep, with teeth a-gleaming.
Barking warning at the twilight,
Is it just her own reflection?
No, for I see something moving,
Kudos, small dog, for detection!

Eyes are glowing in the torchlight,
In the garden, something’s roaming,
Squint to get a better vision
In the half-light of the gloaming.
“What the..?” for a fox is watching,
Half amused at canine antics,
Just a pane of glass between them,
Fox is calm, but dog is frantic.

Five a.m. the clock is showing,
Neighbours should be deep in slumber…
Shush the small dog’s frenzied baying
Or we’ll both be deep in lumber!
Fox decides to saunter dawn-wards…
Loyal guard-dog did her duty…
Might as well go make some coffee,
No chance to play sleeping beauty!

“I have just fulfilled my purpose,
Keeping you from all invasion,
Would there be a treat forthcoming
For my work on this occasion?
Mayhap some small scrap of chicken,
Or perhaps a bite more cheesey?
All that barking makes me peckish…
Saw that fox off, easy-peasy!”

“Ani girl, we should be sleeping,
This is no time to be working…”
“Yeah, but there was an intruder!
Not the moment to be shirking!
Anyway, the fault, dear writer,
Is your own, if you’ll see reason,
‘Cause you left the curtains open
For the tree, this festive season!”

Moving Christmas trees is awkward,
Baubles fall and roll and rattle,
So, I’d left the curtains open,
To avoid the nightly battle.
When the fox had come to visit
Small dog did as she had needed,
So she got her chicken breakfast
Blame is mine, I have conceded.

With apologies to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
This entry was posted in Christmas, Dogs, Photography, Poetry and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to The song of ‘What the…?’

  1. stevetanham says:

    Reblogged this on Sun in Gemini and commented:
    Had to reblog this from Sue.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Our dogs bark like crazy at the coyote, skunk, raccoon, and fishers … all other predators … but I also notice that they prefer doing it from the living room window. I’m sure the coyote could easily jump over the fence into the yard and I would not like to see the results of a dog vs. raccoon attack — or dog v fisher either.They are smart enough to take cover. The wild things have been showing up a lot in recent years. Wild cats, too, which though small, are shockingly strong. One of these days, a bear is going to stroll into the neighborhood. They are getting closer everyday!


    • Sue Vincent says:

      A fox, badger or deer is as big as it gets here nowadays… Ani leaves the deer alone, but a fox would outrun her, I think, and you don’t mess with badgers.
      To be fair, she’s never caught anything except one dead baby bird… and she brought that to me so gently, I think she was trying to help. She always lets me know when they are in trouble.


  3. Erik says:

    I don’t suppose you can write about Mr. Fox without his coming to visit from time to time…


  4. Eliza Waters says:

    Sometimes I think the wild ones get a kick out of stirring up the domestics! 🙂


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