Peafowl

The Peacock  is undoubtedly the most showy of the feathered race. It is a native of the southern part of Asia, and is still found wild in the islands of Java and Ceylon, and some parts of the interior of Africa. They are an ornament to the farm premises, and are useful in destroying reptiles, insects, and garbage; but they are quarrelsome in the poultry-yard, and destructive in the garden. Their flesh is coarse and dark, and they are worthless as layers. The brilliant silvery green and their ever-varying colors give place to an entire white, in one of the varieties.

The Peacock

P

ROUD bird! I watched thee stalking by,
With stately step and slow,
As though thou fain would'st charm each eye
With glittering pomp and show:

And truly thou art brave to see,
In heaven's hues arrayed,
And plainer birds at sight of thee
Might shrink and be dismayed:

Yet, pampered bird! there still are those
I value higher far,
Albeit their garb nor glints nor glows
With many a jeweled star.

I love them for their gentle ways,
Their voices soft and sweet
In summer chorus, that repays
Right well their winter's meat.

For what is outward form at best
But accident of birth?
That form in splendid raiment drest
Is still but common earth.

And yet 'tis he whose painted plumes
Shine fairest in the sun,
Who haughtiest look of pride assumes,
As though by him 'twere done.

We smile to see yon bird strut by,
Thus proud of his array;
But human friends we may espy
As foolish every day.

Not beauty's form nor grand attire
Upon the wise will tell,
But acts  of those who e'er aspire
To do their DUTY well.