Wednesday, November 18, 2009

"To a Maus"

My favorite Robert Burns poem is "To a Mouse" that he wrote after ploughing up a mouse nest.Wee, sleekit, cow'rin', tim'rous beastie,
O, what a panic's in thy breastie!
Thou need na start awa sae hasty,
Wi' bickering brattle!
I wad be laith to rin an' chase thee,
Wi' murd'ring pattle!

That poem came to mind the other day as we found we had a mouse resident in our tractor. Every time we turned on the engine she scurried out of the engine compartment and onto either the loader or the central console by the gear shift. She is a deer mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus, with big Mickey Mouse ears and a dove white belly. All in all a lovely beast but not in my tractor where she can strip my wiring for bedding and generally cause havoc. So yesterday she was "relocated" to the back field. I hope she knows the back field dialect.

Mankind gripes about wildlife invading our space but it was us that invaded theirs. As much as possible we try to amicably coexist with wildlife but draw the line with the skunk in the garage... and the mouse in the tractor.


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