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The Trial of Toad

from The Wind in the Willows by GreenMatthews



“In dealing with a crime so grave” the judge said to the clerk
“The law’s bite must be seen to be quite equal to its bark.
The prisoner’s guilt is proved, so pray consult the penal code.
What is the stiffest sentence we can give to this loathsome Toad?”

The clerk considered briefly “Well, there are three counts, m’ lud.
The first of theft, the second one of peril to public good.
The third one is most serious and one we can’t let pass -
Of calling an officer of the law a fat and impertinent ass.”

The court broke into uproar then and several ladies fainted.
The judge called out for order and gazed down at the attainted.
“We find you guilty, cringing wretch, of these offences three.
Now hearken while I sentence you to penal custody.”

“For theft you shall serve one year and for furious driving four.
As for gratuitous insults to an officer of the law
Which is the most egregious crime so fourteen years seems plenty.
Which makes nineteen, but to be neat - we’ll round it up to twenty.”

And so the minions of the law fell on the hapless Toad.
They girded him with iron chains and saw him safely stowed
Down in a dungeon dark and dank by burly warders manned.
The stoutest, strongest prison ever built in Old England.


from The Wind in the Willows, released June 28, 2021


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GreenMatthews Coventry, UK

Chris Green and Sophie Matthews play English traditional songs and tunes in a thoroughly 21st-century kick-ass style. Using a blend of ancient instruments such as cittern, English bagpipes and shawm as well as modern folk instruments such as guitar, flute and piano accordion, they breathe new life into material from hundreds of years ago, making it fresh and relevant for a modern audience. ... more


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