Thanks! But how is it that you are with us?
Ah, night brings out what daylight will not own to! I do not like the
Cock because the Dog does.—There you have it!
I do not like him, for the reason that having known him as a Chick I
cannot admit him as a Cock!
I do not like the Cock because, not being web-footed, he marks his
passage by a track of stars!
I do not like the Cock because I’m such a homely bird!
I do not like the Cock because he has his picture painted in purple on
all the plates!
I do not like the Cock because on all the steeples he has his statue in
[To a big overgrown CHICKEN.] Well, well!—And you, Capon?
[Dryly.] I do not like the Cock!
[Beginning to strike eight inside the house.] Cuckoo!
Let us go!
Silently cleave the blue air—
[Suddenly pushing up through the ground.]—the dark earth!
There comes the Mole!
[To the MOLE.] And you, why do you hate him?
I hate him because I have never seen him!
And you, Cuckoo, do you know why you hate him?
[On the last stroke.] Because he does not have to be wound up! Cuckoo!
And we do not love—
[Hurriedly.] We are keeping the others waiting—
—the Cock, because—[They fly off. Silence.]
[Coming slowly from behind the kennel.] I am beginning to love him!
THE MORNING OF THE COCK
Wild hillside, moss-grown and ferny, overlooking a valley with scattered villages and winding river. Ruined wall, fragment of some vanished terrace. Gigantic chestnut tree, rank hollies and foxgloves. Litter suggesting neglected corner of a park: gardening implements lying on the ground, fagots, broken flower-pots.
The NIGHT-BIRDS, of all sorts and sizes, form a great circle, perching in tiers on the branches, the briers, the stones; the CAT crouches in the grass; the BLACKBIRD hops hither and thither on a fagot.