English poetry

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Schroeder the Fisherman

Schroeder the Fisherman

I sat on the bank above Bernadotte
And dropped crumbs in the water,
Just to see the minnows bump each other,
Until the strongest got the prize.
Or I went to my little pasture,
Where the peaceful swine were asleep in the wallow,
Or nosing each other lovingly,
And emptied a basket of yellow corn,
And watched them push and squeal and bite,
And trample each other to get the corn.
And I saw how Christian Dallman’s farm,
Of more than three thousand acres,
Swallowed the patch of Felix Schmidt,
As a bass will swallow a minnow
And I say if there’s anything in man
Spirit, or conscience, or breath of God
That makes him different from fishes or hogs,
I’d like to see it work!



Poem Schroeder the Fisherman - Edgar Lee Masters