The Battle of Frogs and Mice Part, 6: A Murine Assembly Calls for War

In our last installment….
A mouse joined a frog upon a pond
But soon a snake appeared and then
Both frog and mouse were good as gone….


“As he said this he gasped in the water. And Plate-licker
Saw him as he at upon the luxuriant banks.
Then he wailed terribly, ran and informed the mice.
A dread wrath fell upon them as they learned his fate,
And they ordered their heralds to summon their kin
To the assembly at the home of Breadmuncher at dawn.
He was the pitiful father of Crumbthief who floated on the pond
high up in a corpse’s form, no longer still alive
on the banks but raised up in the middle of the sea.
And so they came hurrying at dawn and among them first
Breadmuncher rose enraged over his son to make this speech:


“Friends, even if I alone of the mice suffered these many evils
it would be still be a vile crime against us all.
I am wretched because I have lost three children:
A most hateful weasel snatched up the first and killed him
as she dragged him from his hole.
Harsh men dragged the second to his doom
once they designed a wooded trick with their newfangled arts
That thing they call the trap, the destroyer of mice.
[A mouse-eating great beast made my first son into dinner
As he chanced upon him spinning on his fat heel]
The third was beloved to me and his prized mother,
Bellowmouth drowned him once he dragged him to the deep.
Come, let us arm ourselves and go out to face them
Once we’ve arrayed our bodies in our well-worked arms.”



῝Ως εἰπὼν ἀπέπνευσεν ἐν ὕδασι· τὸν δὲ κατεῖδεν
Λειχοπίναξ ὄχθῃσιν ἐφεζόμενος μαλακῇσιν·
δεινὸν δ’ ἐξολόλυξε, δραμὼν δ’ ἤγγειλε μύεσσιν.
ὡς δ’ ἔμαθον τὴν μοῖραν ἔδυ χόλος αἰνὸς ἅπαντας.
καὶ τότε κηρύκεσσιν ἑοῖς ἐκέλευσαν ὑπ’ ὄρθρον
κηρύσσειν ἀγορήνδ’ ἐς δώματα Τρωξάρταο,
πατρὸς δυστήνου Ψιχάρπαγος, ὃς κατὰ λίμνην
ὕπτιος ἐξήπλωτο νεκρὸν δέμας, οὐδὲ παρ’ ὄχθαις
ἦν ἤδη τλήμων, μέσσῳ δ’ ἐπενήχετο πόντῳ.
ὡς δ’ ἦλθον σπεύδοντες ἅμ’ ἠοῖ, πρῶτος ἀνέστη
Τρωξάρτης ἐπὶ παιδὶ χολούμενος, εἶπέ τε μῦθον·
῏Ω φίλοι εἰ καὶ μοῦνος ἐγὼ κακὰ πολλὰ πέπονθα
ἐκ βατράχων, ἡ πεῖρα κακὴ πάντεσσι τέτυκται.
εἰμὶ δ’ ἐγὼ δύστηνος ἐπεὶ τρεῖς παῖδας ὄλεσσα.
καὶ τὸν μὲν πρῶτόν γε κατέκτανεν ἁρπάξασα
ἔχθιστος γαλέη, τρώγλης ἔκτοσθεν ἑλοῦσα.
τὸν δ’ ἄλλον πάλιν ἄνδρες ἀπηνέες ἐς μόρον εἷλξαν
καινοτέραις τέχναις ξύλινον δόλον ἐξευρόντες,
ἤν παγίδα κλείουσι, μυῶν ὀλέτειραν ἐοῦσαν
ὃ τρίτος ἦν ἀγαπητὸς ἐμοὶ καὶ μητέρι κεδνῇ,
τοῦτον ἀπέπνιξεν Φυσίγναθος ἐς βυθὸν ἄξας.
ἀλλ’ ἄγεθ’ ὁπλίζεσθε καὶ ἐξέλθωμεν ἐπ’ αὐτοὺς
σώματα κοσμήσαντες ἐν ἔντεσι δαιδαλέοισιν.

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