The Names of the Hare

The Names of the Hare

Translated from middle English by Seamus Heaney

 

The hare, call him scotart,
big-fellow, bouchart,
the O’Hare, the jumper,
the rascal, the racer.

The wimount, the messer,
the skidaddler, the nibbler,
the ill-met, the slabber.

The quick-scut, the dew-flirt,
the grass-biter, the goibert,
the home-late, the do-the-dirt.

The starer, the wood-cat,
the purblind, the furze cat,
the skulker, the bleary-eyed,
the wall-eyed, the glance-aside
and also the hedge-springer.

The stubble-stag, the long lugs,
the stook-deer, the frisky legs,
the wild one, the skipper,
the hug-the-ground, the lurker,
the race-the-wind, the skiver,
the shadow-shifter, the hedge-squatter,
the dew-hammer, the dew-hoppper,
the sit-tight, the grass-bounder,
the jig-foot, the earth-sitter,
the light-foot, the fern-sitter,
the kail-stag, the herb-cropper.

The creep-along, the sitter-still,
the pintail, the ring-the-hill,
the sudden start, the shake-the-heart,
the belly-white, the lambs-in-flight.

The snuff-the-ground, the baldy skull,
(his chief name is scoundrel!)

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