Snipe Hunting

(or: Short Stories in Sonnet Form I)

It started one day in January.
Larry and I were out hunting snipe when suddenly a little, grubby gnome appeared.
Obviously, when a gnome appears the chances of finding snipe increase dramatically, so Larry and I approached said gnome and asked the fellow his name.
“Vallery Von Vellenvronvrock I am,” he grumbled with an odd sort of smile, then asked: “vhat are you boys doing out so late in my voods?”.
Even though gnomes are a good sign in snipe hunting terms, a gnome with a Germanic accent tends to throw one off, so it took us a second to respond.
“You know,” said Larry at last, “we’re hoping to hunt some snipe in your woods if you don’t mind.”
“Oranges.” declared the gnome, “Unless you bring me Oranges you may not hunt here.”
Useless as it is to reject a grubby gnome’s terms, I requested a moment to consider the matter and pulled Larry aside.
“Dunno about you,” I said, “but I don’t have any oranges. ”
“Just a moment,” Larry said, “I’m pretty sure I packed some in my bag.”
“Enough to appease his grubbiness?” I asked as he checked his bag.
“A feast and a half,” he said, “I’ll bet the little fellow can smell them.”
Not wanting to keep the gnome waiting too long we turned back to the gnome, accepted his terms, relinquished our oranges, then continued our night of snipe hunting.
Eventually, as the sun started rising, we saw a snipe some 30 yards away but were so struck by its rugged beauty that we couldn’t bear to shoot it, and we went home empty handed.


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