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Sammy McSnake

As Sammy dozed on a warm tree limb,
He felt some eyes look up at him.
And so he quickly turned around,
Then calmly slithered to the ground.

Hid in a bush and heard loud noise,
The sounds of cheering girls and boys.
He saw the crowd that lined the street,
Crawled up front through human feet.

Oh what a sight, it made him sigh.
A great parade was passing by,
The drums went, boom, the cymbals, clang,
A rocket shot off with a bang.

Sammy Snake thought, "This is grand,
Fireworks and a marching band.
I think this is some holiday.
I'll ask mom, "What will she say?"

His mother sat the family down
And had the children gather round.
"Each year this day the green we wear.
In honor of a land so fair.

"A land that's far across the sea
A place that's dear to you and me.
This day folks sing and fine bands play.
Too bad it's called St. Patrick's Day.

"It's a special day for Ireland
And kids, that is our native land.
Your foresnakes left there long ago
And found this home that we love so.

"But little ones I'll tell you true
Old Ireland was special, too
Nice sunsets and glorious dawns,
The cutest little leprechauns.

"Great folks like Herrigan and Bailey
Each carrying a fine shillelagh,
White thatch-roof houses with green doors
And shamrocks spread across the moors.

"Among the snakes was not one frown
Until Sir Patrick came around.
Ireland, not his native land—
He ruled it with a firm iron hand.

One silly snake gave him a scare,
Crawled up into his underwear.
Patrick's anger followed fear
He yelled, "You snakes are out of here."

"Next day he posted this decree:
'All snakes must go into the sea.'
The leaving was a sorry sight,
They sneaked onto the boats at night.

"A thousand years they sailed the foam
Searching for a brand new home
But as each port came into sight
The snakes could tell it wasn't right.

"But when the ship was in the dock
At a famous place called Plymouth Rock
Snake cries of glee soon filled the air--
They saw the shamrocks growing there.

"A shout, 'We've found the promised land.
This place looks like our Ireland.'
Each happy snake made up his mind
To leave the smelly boat behind.

"They found an old aroma there
As they enjoyed the clean fresh air.
It was the smell of Irish beer,
They knew that Irish folks lived here.

"And so our snakes had found their dream
They toasted with some Irish Cream.
'To America a land that makes
Home for Irish and Irish snakes.

"Through many years things were so great
The Irish planned to celebrate.
Each year they'd keep it just the same
And the humans voted on a name.

"This celebration, I hate to say,
Is sadly called St. Patrick's day.
The name St. Patrick is a joke
But the day's big fun for Irish folk.

"The folks think Patrick is a Saint
But Irish snakes all know he ain't.
Don't let that spoil this happy scene.
Enjoy the wearin' of the green

"Remember Irish blood still flows
From your tail tip to pointed nose.
Put on green skin, wear your green wig
And dance the dance, wiggle the jig."

So Sammy danced the night away,
Wiggling the jig, folks heard him say,
"Tomorrow morn when I awake,
You can call me Sammy McSnake."

—Grandpa Tucker
Copyright ©1997 by Bob Tucker

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