Zebra Shepherdess

A shepherdess of zebras,
Zebras in a herding pen,
Stranded on an islet formed
By shore-floods pummeling.

You aimed a fledgeling flintlock,
A padlock by the bullet flouting;
You tamed the angles: direct shot!
And the terrible herd redoubted.

That zeal of equine, dark stampede,
Snorting snouts the swell I feared,
Before their loss where lobsters breed;
Into fury, disappeared.

Perilous storm-force seizing Lundy,
The foals and younger surely drown;
While elders by the waves outrunning,
Horses white held zebras down.

Yet you were calm beside me,
Discerning augur of the end;
The first, then all, burst through the water,
To where a winding river bends.

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