The Duck and the Kangaroo
BY EDWARD LEAR
Said the Duck to the Kangaroo,
‘Good gracious! how you hop!
Over the fields and the water too,
As if you never would stop!
Edward Lear (1812-1888) was an English poet, illustrator and artist. He was also a wanderer. I am a wanderer too. Ah ha! Now the poem makes sense! “The Duck and the Kangaroo,” is about Edward—and me. We are “the duck.” We want to go somewhere else, always leaving home.
My life is a bore in this nasty pond,
And I long to go out in the world beyond!
I wish I could hop like you!’
Said the Duck to the Kangaroo.
Lear wandered for almost 40 years before establishing himself in a villa in San Remo,Italy.
Said the Kangaroo, ‘I’m ready!
All in the moonlight pale;
But to balance me well, dear Duck, sit steady!
And quite at the end of my tail!’
So away they went with a hop and a bound,
And they hopped the whole world three times round;
In “The Wild Duck,” a play by Henrik Ibsen, there is a duck and a son who leaves home yet returns after 15 years away. Ibsen’s play is a masterpiece; it is not silly at all. We will begin reading THE WILD DUCK in THE GLOBAL READIN GROUP-THE ANNEX, a virtual literary salon. It is free and open to all. Come join us! You can find out more here: https://alicecatherinej.com/the-global-reading-group-a-virtual-literary-salon/
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