Wednesday, January 04, 2006
One For The Pot - You May Never
In the early 1950's we lived up country in Kenya and my father provided us with meat from the game on the plains outside Kericho. We had no refrigeration, just a fly proof meat safe with double screen doors. A Thompson’s Gazelle could provide us and our staff with food for a week. I shot my first buck from the back of a green Ford pick up truck in 1952.
You may never have stood and looked down the sight
At the tommy buck out on the in the breeze
With the barrel on the side of the truck
As your father says, “Gently now, squeeze.”
You may never have felt the kick of the butt,
Then heard the report with a crack,
Or seen the buck just scatter away,
Leaping this way and that.
You may never have smelt the smell of the air
After a fire on the plain
When fresh grass shoot are pushing through
With mushrooms, after the rain.
You may never have heard the kru kroo of a dove
When at dusk to its mate it is calling,
As shadows are lengthening out to the east
And the African night is falling.
You may never have felt the pump of your heart
As you slam the truck cab door
Then lurch on the seat as you cross the plain
To the prey when your only four.
You may never have ridden with game in the back
As rain clouds blacken the sky,
Or heard the clank of the tail-gate chains
And, never again shall I!
Neil Stewart McLeod 11.4.2005