Subscribe for ad free access & additional features for teachers. Authors: 267, Books: 3,607, Poems & Short Stories: 4,435, Forum Members: 71,154, Forum Posts: 1,238,602, Quizzes: 344

The Swine of the Gods

A few years ago a friend of mine told me of something that happened to
him when he was a. young man and out drilling with some Connaught
Fenians. They were but a car-full, and drove along a hillside until
they came to a quiet place. They left the car and went further up the
hill with their rifles, and drilled for a while. As they were coming
down again they saw a very thin, long-legged pig of the old Irish sort,
and the pig began to follow them. One of them cried out as a joke that
it was a fairy pig, and they all began to run to keep up the joke. The
pig ran too, and presently, how nobody knew, this mock terror became
real terror, and they ran as for their lives. When they got to the car
they made the horse gallop as fast as possible, but the pig still
followed. Then one of them put up his rifle to fire, but when he looked
along the barrel he could see nothing. Presently they turned a corner
and came to a village. They told the people of the village what had
happened, and the people of the village took pitchforks and spades and
the like, and went along the road with them to drive the pig away. When
they turned the comer they could not find anything.


1902.

William Butler Yeats