A Question

A poem by Ellis Parker Butler

Whene’er I feed the barnyard folk
My gentle soul is vexed;
My sensibilities are torn
And I am sore perplexed.

The rooster so politely stands
While waiting for his food,
But when I feed him, what a change!
He then is rough and rude.

He crowds his gentle wives aside
Or pecks them on the head;
Sometimes I think it would be best
If he were never fed.

And so I often stand for hours
Deciding which is right—
To impolitely have enough,
Or starve and be polite.

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