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A Bunch Of Trout-Flies
by [?]

For Archie Rutledge

Here’s a half-a-dozen flies,
Just about the proper size
For the trout of Dickey’s Run,–
Luck go with them every one!

Dainty little feathered beauties,
Listen now, and learn your duties:
Not to tangle in the box;
Not to catch on logs or rocks,
Boughs that wave or weeds that float,
Nor in the angler’s “pants” or coat!
Not to lure the glutton frog
From his banquet in the bog;
Nor the lazy chub to fool,
Splashing idly round the pool;
Nor the sullen horned pout
From the mud to hustle out!

None of this vulgarian crew,
Dainty flies, is game for you.
Darting swiftly through the air
Guided by the angler’s care,
Light upon the flowing stream
Like a winged fairy dream;
Float upon the water dancing,
Through the lights and shadows glancing,
Till the rippling current brings you,
And with quiet motion swings you,
Where a speckled beauty lies
Watching you with hungry eyes.

Here’s your game and here’s your prize!
Hover near him, lure him, tease him,
Do your very best to please him,
Dancing on the water foamy,
Like the frail and fair Salome,
Till the monarch yields at last;
Rises, and you have him fast!
Then remember well your duty,–
Do not lose, but land, your booty;
For the finest fish of all is
Salvelinus Fontinalis.

So, you plumed illusions, go,
Let my comrade Archie know
Every day he goes a-fishing
I’ll be with him in well-wishing.
Most of all when lunch is laid
In the dappled orchard shade,
With Will, Corinne, and Dixie too,
Sitting as we used to do
Round the white cloth on the grass
While the lazy hours pass,
And the brook’s contented tune
Lulls the sleepy afternoon,–
Then’s the time my heart will be
With that pleasant company!

June 17, 1913.