by Mary Austin

I know very well what I'd rather be
If I didn't always have to be me!
I'd rather be an owl,
A downy feathered owl,
A wink-ity, blink-ity, yellow-eyed owl
In a hole in a hollow tree.
I'd take my dinner in chipmunk town,
And wouldn't I gobble the field mice down,
If I were a wink-ity, blink-ity owl,
And didn't always have to be me!

I know very well what I'd like to do
If I didn't have to do what I do!
I'd go and be a woodpecker,
A rap-ity, tap-ity, red-headed woodpecker
In the top of a tall old tree.
And I'd never take a look
At a lesson or a book,
And I'd scold like a pirate on the sea,
If I only had to do what I like to do,
And didn't always have to be me!

Or else I'd be an antelope,
A pronghorned antelope,
With lots of other antelope
Skimming like a cloud on a wire-grass plian.
A bounding, bouncing antelope,
You'd never get me back to my desk again!

Or I might be a puma,
A singe-colored puma,
A slinking, sly-foot puma
As fierce as fierce could be!
And I'd wait by the waterholes where antelope drink
In the cool of the morning
And I do
That ever any antelope could get away from me.

But if I were a hunter,
A red Indian hunter -
I'd like to be a hunter, -
I'd have a bow made of juniper wood
From a lightning-blasted tree,
And I'd creep and I'd creep on that puma asleep
A flint tipped arrow,
An eagle feathered arrow,
For a puma kills calves and a puma kills sheep,
And he'd never eat any more antelope
If he once met up with me!