Gerard Manley Hopkins rewrites Three Blind Mice

Ah, see, see! the sightless, the flight fleet
Of squealing squeakers, a wisp-whiskered trinity:
How needless, heedless of wife's knife's vicinity,
Throat-threatening, they run than rather retreat!
Now tails trimmed, a timorous trio's feet
Come tip-tumbling in marvellous, mewling affinity
Of mice! In a trice, with One-in-Three divinity,
They chase the chopper, which lightly lopped each seat!

And what harvester, reaper, weeps not at such horrible halving,
When lengths, limp, lie strength-ended, and behind
Is bare, each stropped, stripped, cropped by her carving?
How hard is the farm-mistress' arm to their harmless kind:
For the fast-footed, fated field-mice, parlour-bent, were
starving,
Thieving for a cheese, for a rind, yet ah! were all blind!



From Send-Up