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Childrens
 
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JIM
Who ran away from his nurse
and was eaten by a lion.
by
Hillaire Belloc

Belloc

There was a boy whose name was Jim
His friends were very good to him
They gave him tea and cakes and jam
And slices of delicious ham
And chocolate with pink inside
And little tricycles to ride
They read him stories through and through
And even took him to the zoo
But there it was the awful fate
Befell him, which I now relate
You know (at least you ought to know
For I have often told you so)
That children never are allowed
To leave their nurses in a crowd
Now this was Jim's especial foible
He ran away when he was able
And on this inauspicious day
He slipped his hand and ran away
He hadn't gone a yard when BANG
With open jaws a lion sprang
And hungrily began to eat
The boy, beginning at his feet
Now just imagine how it feels
When first your toes and then your heels
And then by varying degrees
Your shins and ankles, calves and knees
Are slowly eaten bit by bit
No wonder Jim detested it
No wonder that he shouted "Ai"
The honest keeper heard his cry
Though very fat, he almost ran
To help the little gentleman
"Ponto," he ordered as he came
For Ponto was the lion's name
"Ponto," he said with angry frown
"Down sir, let go, put it down!"
The lion made a sudden stop
He let the dainty morsel drop
And slunk reluctant to his cage
Snarling with disappointed rage
But when he bent him over, Jim
The honest keeper's eyes grew dim
The lion having reached his head
The miserable boy was dead
When nurse informed his parents they
Were more concerned than I can say
His mother as she dried her eyes
Said "It gives me no surprise
He would not do as he was told."
His father who was self-controlled
Bade all the children round attend
To James's miserable end.
And always keep ahold of nurse
For fear of finding something worse.
 
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