A thing by the name of Fwip.
Red fur, grey eyes, and all different size,
Was this thing by the name of Fwip.
It burrowed in mud and slept in rain
With its hair all matted around.
This thing named Fwip was not germaine
Save to the place where it went to groud.
It had no effect, it ate nothing much,
Its tracks disappeared in a day.
Yet the forest it loved, and was loved by it,
In their own apathetic way.
Other creatures would it disregard
And by them would be disregarded.
No notice would it willfully snatch,
Nor would be willingly awarded.
Yet for some, like a squirrel with a nut,
Or a deer that was caught in some bramble,
Fwip was a thing that could help each out
As on its walks it did ramble.
A hiding place for seeds and things
Was often found where Fwip had lain.
And one bounce of its body could free the horns
Of a deer that would be otherwise slain.
Yet no thanks were ever offered,
Nor were thanks by Fwip ever wanted.
Its only wish to forever stay
In the forest that it haunted.
Its talents were few and its outlook was dim,
It had no great perceptions.
Yet the things in store for the odd creature Fwip
Would make of its life great corrections.
One drear, gloomy day in the forest of Fwip
Came the sounds and the scent of burning.
Silent trees shreiked and animals ran
And Fwip felt a curious yearning.
Never had "future" arrived in its brain
Never want nor hope nor despair.
But these all and more filled the heart of Fwip,
As smoke filtered out the clean air.
It waddled and wended its way to a stream
And beheld Fwip his life's first foe.
The flames roared and danced over the trees
And the wind began to blow.
Yet one thing Fwip saw, as his home burned quickly
Was the fire avoiding the water.
Without much ado, Fwip waded in
And began swimming about like an otter.
When its red fur was soaked with the dampness and wet
Fwip stood and moved toward the inferno.
The first words of its life came out of Fwip's mouth:
"It is now time for you to go."
The firestorm chuckled, and it evil gaze lingered
On the wet creature moving toward it.
"You'll never kill me, or even cross over
The fire's too deep to ford it!"
Fwip merely advanced, dripping drops as it went,
And wetting the ground before it.
Came a sizzle and spark, and smoke came dark,
And the fire felt fear, it was sure of it.
Soon to the core of the firestorm came
The odd little creature called Fwip.
And it danced and it played in the center of flame,
As water in fire a seam did rip.
Other creatures of the woods saw
And into the water they came splashing.
Out the other side of the stream went
Fox and deet and rabbit, all crashing
Into the fire! The smoke-eaten trees!
Spraying water with them as they went
'Til they came to the place where the creature Fwip was
The fire was nearly spent.
With the help of the animals the forest was saved
But Fwip was forever scarred.
It finally knew fear (which is losing what we want)
And from peace felt forever barred.
It went deep to the trees, where no flames had touched,
And against a wise tree Fwip leaned.
"What do I do, now that I'm done?"
Its heart in anguish screamed.
The tree bent its branches,
Its twigs and its leaves.
"Don't fret," the wind whispered,
"We know why hearts grieve."
"A hero is not one of infinite strength,
Nor of power or grace or light.
A hero is simply someone who keeps going,
Never giving up its fight."
Fwip's tears left trickles among the dark pines,
And the forest itself understood.
Too often unnoticed go the works of the brave,
While the many who followed are named good.
Fwip lived in the forest the rest of its days
Doing not much, and saying even less.
But it always recalled what its home had said,
When it felt that its life was a mess.
So remember, you few, who do what must be done,
When you are feeling diminished and small.
You were the hero; you kept going on,
Tenacity saves us all.
Hang in there, folks!
A poem by Manya Muffin!