Adventures With Bears (Poem by James McIntyre)

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Adventures With Bears

By James McIntyre


I bought of land two miles square,
I knew not it contained a bear,
I never thought there would be any,
But alas, I found many;
The bush was thick and mat and tangle,
It made it a perfect jungle,
But one mile square of good dry land
Was enough for me to take in hand;
Swamp I could reach but when frozen,
Then I saw bears by the dozen,
Thick as monkies in Africa,
And many a strange trick I saw,
Gamboling with the greatest ease,
High up the trunks of the big trees,
While some were swinging from branches
And hanging on them with their haunches;
But quietly I then tilled my farm,
The bears at first done me no harm,
Till one night I was roused by dogs,
And found a bear was at my hogs,
He threw a pig across each shoulder
And there I was a sad beholder,
But to the house I quickly run
For to procure my loaded gun,
And as he could not run but slow,
So heavy laden through the snow,
I him full soon did overtake,
And his courage quick I did shake,
For by the leg my good bold dog
He bravely caught the thievish rogue,
And this move made him soon fork o'er
To me at once the largest porker,
For moment squeeze it did pig stun,
But up he rose and quick he run,
The bear now scared his only hope,
To let at once the other pig drop,
I shot the bear right through the eyes
And secured a valued prize,
There's nothing I love so to eat
In winter time as the bear's meat,
So a victory I soon won
And sold for high price grease and skin;
The bears on honey love to thrive,
One morn was wrecked my best beehive,
That day I was to sell the honey
For to raise some ready money,
But bear my views he did despise
And proudly carried off the prize;
That night I set a good spring gun,
With rails I built for him a run,
Open all way to hive of bees,
He tried again a hive to seize,
But all his efforts were in vain,
He sprung the gun and he was slain,
O'er the fact I felt quite funny
It well repaid me for my honey;
One bear was playing on me joke,
Carrying off all my young stock,
I set my trap, built round it fence,
Resolved he ne'er would get from thence,
But at the first he did me hoax,
For he was cunning as a fox,
He dug under and stole my bait,
But I next sunk trap and sealed his fate,
My good iron trap again it caught
A great bear but it came to naught,
Breakfast he had at my expense
And he then showed wondrous sense,
Trap he picked up with greatest ease
And dashed it to pieces on the trees,
But blacksmith soon did it repair
For I was bound to have that bear,
I attached to trap a heavy clog,
It was like lifting a small log,
I drove in it some sharp iron spikes
Which would cut deep each time he strikes,
He tried again to steal my bait
And break my trap at the old rate,
But he soon dashed out his own brains,
His carcass it brought me great gains;
A neighbour man who would not work
I thought that he did steal my pork,
But at last I found long black hairs,
Then I knew it was the bears,
I put through barrels rods of iron
So they a bear neck would environ,
And rods together they would snap,
I found him choked quite dead in trap,
Since then my strife with bears did cease,
Now many years I've lived in peace.

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