The Pied Piper of Hamelin

by Robert Browning

Into the street the Piper stept,
Smiling first a little smile,
As if he knew what magic slept
In his quiet pipe the while;
Then, like a musical adept,
To blow the pipe his lips he wrinkled,
And green and blue his sharp eyes twinkled,
Like a candle-flame where salt is sprinkled;
And ere three shrill notes the pipe uttered,
You heard as if an army muttered;
And the muttering grew to a grumbling;
And the grumbling grew to a mighty rumbling;
And out of the houses the rats came tumbling.
Great rats, small rats, lean rats, brawny rats,
Brown rats, black rats, grey rats, tawny rats,
Grave old plodders, gay young friskers,
Fathers, mothers, uncles, cousins,
Cocking tails and pricking whiskers,
Families by tens and dozens,
Brothers, sisters, husbands, wives--
Followed the Piper for their lives.
From street to street he piped advancing,
And step for step they followed dancing,
Until they came to the river Weser
Wherein all plunged and perished!


This is an excerpt from the "Pied Piper of Hamelin". The verse version by the Victorian poet Robert Browning, copied from Storynory.

The Disciple ...

Is a student; a follower. Often, parents tell their children to be leaders not followers, but, conversely, a good leader is also a good follower. Nonetheless, we are all followers of something or someone. The danger isn't so much in the following, as it is in the 'who' or 'what' we choose to follow. What "music" seduces you? Who are you listening to? Who or What are you a disciple of?