The Music of Mary Crowell
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Shifty Screavy

© 2007 by Mary Crowell and Simon Crowell.

Shifty Screavy was a rat,
And a shifty little rat was he.
Fast as you could kick a can
He would change into a man;
Blink an eye and back a rodent be.

Shifty Screavy liked to walk
In the shadows with his friends at night.
And he had a walking stick
That could see through every trick,
Knock in doors, and also win a fight.

Shifty Screavy wandered far,
Found the way to plumb the Dragon’s Well.
He recovered treasures there
Lost within the dragon’s lair.
Came back home with lot’s of stuff to sell.

Shifty’s the king of the wererats.
‘Has a slight case of ly-can-thro-py.
All of his brothers, oh they love a fight!
Nip and Tuck, Concealer, and he.

Nip and Tuck were ratty twins –
The pranksters of the wererat crew.
They excelled at swapping lies,
Were the Masters of Diguise,
And could cook a batch of zombie stew.

Concealer hid the Pack away,
‘Had a cape that let them disappear.
With the tiniest of sniffs
He could find all traps and glyphs
That were hidden in the Dragon’s lair.


The Zombie Lord (he) smelled a rat,
And a shifty little rat he smelled.
He was full of firm belief
That our sneaky little thief
Could tell him where the Dragon dwelled.

The Zombie Lord (he) laid in wait
In the shadows by Ol’ Shifty’s lair.
Well, it really hurt his pride
That he had to wait outside.
He couldn’t cross the warding there.


[Well, the Zombie Lord, he had some words to say. And he said]

[Well, that didn’t make a whole lot of sense to you or me. And it didn’t make much sense to Screavy. Luckily the stick could translate.]

“Shifty Screavy, Tell me where
All your brothers go to get that gear.
There’s no need to be a pain --
I just want to pick your brain.”
Said the rat, “And also eat it, I fear.”

“Shifty Screavy, tell me now.
Stop your jokes; you’re having no more fun.
Or you’ll never blow a breath
For my wand will be your death.
Said the Rat, “Oh, you mean this one?”


Shifty Screavy raised the wand
And prepared to blast the King Undead.
But before the blast be planned
Could commence, it left his hand.
And it floated there beside his head.

Concealer murmured, “Use your brain”
“Or better yet, Why don’t we use our swords?”
As really anyone can see
This old wand – it is the key.
‘Turns the living into Zombie Hordes.

[Remember Shifty’s magic stick? It could see through any trick—even Concealer’s!]

Shifty smiled ‘cause he could see
All around him with the magic stick.
Nip and Tuck were there beside (him)
With Concealer as their guide.
Said the rats, “We’ve got some butt to kick!”


The rats and zombies fought all night,
And the zombies never seemed to tire.
“I’m afraid we’re getting beat,”
“Lads, I think it’s time to cheat.”
And the wererats lit the wand on fire.

The Zombie Lord he screamed aloud
“ARRRRGH” was all he could respond.
“No translation,” said the stick.
“’Cause he’s angry at your trick,”
“For his soul is there inside that wand.”

All the zombies fell down dead --
Started turning into zombie sludge.
Nip and Tuck began a stew,
Or maybe zombie cordon bleu
How it tasted you can be the judge.


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