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Put Out the Fires!
by R. Mark McKenna
A brave man whose name is Clyde
seeks out adventure, while others hide.
He’s not a hero yet, as you may have guessed,
but let’s see how he does when put to the test.
Eager to prove he is worthy of praise,
Clyde grows tired of his boring days,
so he picks up his sword
and sticks out his chest
and starts down the road to an epic quest.
It doesn’t take long as he roams through the land
to find someone in need of his helping hand,
for in less than an hour as he enters a town…
he sees burning buildings with flames all around!
“To the rescue!” he yells as he runs to the creek,
scooping up water with expert technique.
He throws a few buckets, but the flames rise higher.
Put out the fire, Clyde! Put out the fire!
He doubles his efforts and soon it is done.
Putting out fires is really quite fun!
The people in town clap and cheer.
How lucky they are that Clyde was near.
He sits a while to enjoy his glory,
but his break is now done.
He must continue his story.
With sword in hand Clyde walks down the road.
(This man is clearly in hero mode.)
As he enters the next town he hears a shout.
Put it out, Clyde! Put it out!
He scoops up more water with hardly a strain…
and soon hot coals are all that remain.
Wow! Two fires in just one day?
Clyde marvels at his own gallant display.
How many? Count them: one and two!
After so much success, what's a hero to do?
Carry on, of course, and continue the streak!
So he picks up his bucket and follows the creek.
Sure enough, before too long
he finds another town with fire blazing strong,
and just like before, with the skill of a master,
he puts out the fire… but this time even faster!
Fighting these fires makes Clyde feel good.
If he could do this all day, trust me, he would.
He now starts to feel like his life has purpose.
His extinguishing talent has come to the surface!
With a skip in his step, dreaming of fires to smother,
he leaves the third town in search of another.
As he enters the fourth town, steady and bold,
his bucket is ready to throw on the...
Clyde looks around—no flames in sight.
If there are no fires, what will he fight?
He stands there thinking, one hand on his hip,
when a woman approaches to offer a tip.
"Are you the brave man," she says with a frown,
"who puts out the fires in every town?”
Clyde proudly responds, "Yes, ma'am. That's me!
I’ve made our land safer, you have to agree.
I am the hero who never tires.
I am Sir Clyde, Master of the Fires.”
"That's great," says the woman, "but what a waste of skill.
Why put out fires when there's a dragon to kill?”
Clyde takes a step back and shakes his head.
Should he have been fighting a dragon instead?
He sets off at once to fix his error…
once firefighter, now dragon slayer.
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