Virgil the Hound by Tere Albanese
Virgil is a royally bred foxhound. However, he refuses to hunt foxes or anything else for that matter. The Master of Hounds treats him quite cruelly. Virgil takes it in stride and stays true to himself. On one particular hunt, Virgil did what he always does. The hounds went one way and Virgil went the opposite way. The Mater of Hounds sends one of the huntsmen after Virgil and tells him to tie his whip to Virgil’s collar and drag him back. But when the huntsman finds him, Virgil teaches the huntsman a valuable lesson about compassion for all living things. This is a children’s book for all ages.
Targeted Age Group:: This a children's book.
Heat/Violence Level: Heat Level 1 – G Rated Clean Read
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
When I was a child I foxhunted. Virgil was a real hound that I knew and that inspired me to write the original poem.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
The characters are all real, as well as myself.
If you are curious, gather ‘round.
I’ll tell you the tale of Virgil the Hound.
Born a foxhound, his bloodlines true blue.
But sweet Virgil saw a different view.
A true story this is, and I play a part.
A whip I carried close to my heart.
I would whirl it and crack it
to make the hounds heed,
following the chase on Kelly, my steed.
The huntsman, who is leader of the pack,
would use my help to keep the hounds on track.
When some had strayed or lost the scent,
off to find them Kelly, and I went.
Chasing some varmint gone to ground,
up come their heads, they quickly turn ‘round.
When they hear me call the fox hunting song,
the lyrics they obey are,
“Come, come, come along.”
That was my part, but enough about me.
Now let us begin our fabled story.
Back in time, we will travel for the start,
to the beginning, the logical part.
It was a cloudy morn in the month of May.
This tale begins with what happened that day.
Grey clouds opened, pouring rain through the night.
The thirsty winter grass turned green and bright.
Springtime, when Mother Nature gives birth
to all life that awaits their arrival on Earth.
Fox and raccoon pups, deer and honey bees,
and baby birds singing in the blooming trees.
Vera, the pride of hunt clubs throughout the nation,
birthed her first pups
to the Hunt Club’s proud elation.
But with this great joy a task also came.
All these pups must be given a name.
A rule was followed to remember the mother
and sisters and brothers of each other.
Their names must begin, as is customary,
as their mother’s and start with a “V.”
And so they arrived one by one.
Venus and Vesta, Victoria and Vaun,
Viceroy and Venture, Vail and Vagabond,
Valor and Violet, then Vick came along.
Now, Vera had worked very hard and very long.
She rested a bit ‘til Mother Nature pushed her on.
Then she drew in a breath, and next came Vanity.
“Twelve!” cried the huntsman.
“An even dozen it shall be.”
Vera, by now, certainly should have been done.
But little did we know,
one more pup was yet to come.
That’s when number thirteen showed up.
And so arrived the last born pup.
“A name!” cried the huntsman frantically.
“We need one more name that starts with ‘V.’
Superstition would deem being born thirteen,
he could be unlucky is what that might mean.”
“A praiseworthy name is what we need.”
A serious task this was indeed.
Names were whispered from one to another.
But none was quite right for the last born brother.
Then was whispered a desirable name.
A flawless title with noteworthy fame.
“Virgil!” cried the huntsman.
“The Roman poet from the past!
We’ll call him Virgil. The perfect name at last.”
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