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jy PALMER COX
AUTHOR OF THE BROWNIES
STORES BY r-i
THE FAIRYTALES AUTHORESS.
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THEY were rivals-the Gobbler and the Gander.
Their home was at the Brookside Farm, and it would be
hard to find a prettier home than this. It was a big old
fashioned house and it had stood for years and years. The
brook ran along on one side and day after day it babbled
as it flowed, and the little daisies lifted up their pretty
heads to listen to its merry songs, and when night came
their drowsy heads dropped as the brook murmured a low
The gander had been enjoying the cool, clear waters of
the brook. He had thought himself a very beautiful bird,
as he sailed gracefully up and down, arching his long white
neck with a perfect air of contentment. The other geese
at the farm were quite young, some of them so young that
they looked like little lumps of yellow gold as they plunged
boldly into the water. And why should they fear, for the
brook had murmured coaxingly-" Come little baby bird!
Come bathe in my waters, I will not hurt you, I will sing
you low pretty songs." The gander remembered when
the brook had gently called to him, and he smiled as he
thought how long ago.
His swim over, he had come on shore and once more
donned his cap and trousers, and even better satisfied than
ever had started home for his dinner.
"Ha! Ha! Ha!" he heard behind him, and again
"Ha! Ha! Ha!" Turning around whom should he see
but the Gobbler rigged in his very best, his tail spread out
just as wide as he could get it, and looking very grand in-
deed, even the gander had to admit as much as his eyes
rested upon him.
"Don't you think you are a sight! said the Gobbler,
Go look at yourself in the brook over yonder, you'll surely
agree with me that a more ridiculous bird than yourself
Ridiculous, indeed !" replied the angry Gander, If
you but knew what a sight you were, never again would
you strut around the barn yard!"
"Strut do you call it!" exclaimed the Gobbler,
"I pride myself that my walk is most elegant. Now
if I waddled as you do I'd hang my head with shame."
"'Tis but your jealously that makes you talk so," said
the Gander, "you think because you are tall and your legs
are long that you'll be much admired and praised-but
people do not notice you when I am sailing on the waters,
then it is that you must stand in the background, and my
short legs and broad web feet serve me as your feet and
legs never can you.
Word followed word, and these foolish birds grew
angrier all the time. The rooster stopped the quarrel for
their loud words had attracted the other birds. Do you
know," said he, "you have kept up this foolish nonsense
so long, that now you have lost your dinner. 'Tis an
hour ago since Ann came with her shining tin pan full
of corn, but you paid no attention to her. To-day's loss is
a small loss, but it might have been much greater. Do
hereafter remember your positions, and try to act more
like grown up fowls, than like two tiny newly hatched
birds. Remember that the little folks of the barn yard
look to you as an example."
THE DISSATISFIED OWL.
BLINKY WINKY was a little gray owl that lived in the
plum tree at the meeting of the cross roads. He slept all
day, and at night perched on one of the branches and
greeted the wagons as-they went by with a low "Whoo!
SWhoo He did not mean to be inquisitive, only pleasant
and friendly, at least that is what he used to do, but now
he has grown very quiet and solemn, and heeds not the
the wagons as they go rumbling by.
The lark had been the cause of all the trouble. In
the early spring she had come to live across the road from
Blinky, and her song so sweet and clear filled his whole
heart with wonder and awe. "If the lark can sing,"
thought Blinky, "why can't I?" and he tried to throw
back his head and pour forth the same sweet tones, but
this was impossible with his short, fat neck, and his
mightiest effort was of no avail. So day by day Blinky
grew sadder and sadder, but still the lark sang on, not
knowing what unhappiness she brought to poor silly
One night he left his home, more miserable than ever,
and perched himself upon the fence rail to brood over his
troubles. It was a bright moonlight night and the owl
family that lived in the apple tree saw Blinky Winky
sitting all alone, and started off one after the other to bring
him home with them. Such a doleful bird as they found.
It was a long while before Blinky would tell them his
secret but once started he poured forth his whole sad tale.
They pitied and they scolded him, and their scolding did
him good for when morning dawned and it was time to go
home they had led him to see the folly of his ways and to
resolve to try to be satisfied with himself and not aim to
be like somebody else. He learned, after spending many
unhappy days and weary nights, that God had not made
his little throat in such a manner that he could sing. It
was a good lesson for him and all his brothers and sisters.
Perhaps little boys and girls can learn something from this
story of the dissatisfied owl, and it is this. Don't think
you can do everything you see other people doing."
THE Bear family lived together in as pretty a place as
you could well find. The trees grew tall and large and
spread their branches over the earth, leaving only room
enough for the sun to creep gently through by day, and for
the little stars to twinkle brightly through at night. Ferns
tall and stately grew in this place, and delicate, pale green
ferns with the gentle blue eyed violet peeping from their
midst, helped to beautify the Bear family's dwelling place.
The Bruin household would'have been just as happy
as Bears could be if it had not been -for troublesome
Peter. He was the oldest Bruin cub and just as full of
naughtiness as was possible, and his greatest fault was
his meddlesome ways. There was nothing into which he
would not poke his paws.
One day, while out on a ramble he spied a bright
shinning steel trap. Now Peter had never seen one before
and quick as a flash he grabbed it up to learn all about
it, and he soon found out to his sorrow. Snap went the
spring and poor Peter howled with pain. Fate was
good to Peter this time, for as he jumped around in his
fury the spring gave away and off came the trap leaving
young Bruin however with as sore a paw as ever you
Now one would think that this experience would
prove a good lesson to Peter but no sooner had
his paw gotten well than he had forgotten' all
about his encounter with the trap and was
at mischief again. Mother Bruin
coaxed, Father Bruin scolded.
Peter always tried to do better
but his memory usually
proved too short and
promises went for
day /1' uII .lo
started off through the woods to hunt for fun, as he
called these foolish pranks with which he was constantly
dealing. He chased the butterflies, hurled stones at 'the
hop toads, and then sat down on the ground to eat the wild
cherries that had fallen from the thickly ladened boughs.
Now Peter's eyes were always wandering restlessly
around, and all of a sudden they rested on a big hollow in
a tree close by. "That's a squirrel's house," thought
Peter, I wonder if the little fellow has any nuts left over
from last winter, I'll go see, I guess." With Peter to
think was to act, and he thrust his paw away down deep
in the hollow. Peter had found something, but not nuts.
The bees had discovered this place first and were using it
as their store house for honey. Now Peter's intrusion
was not to their liking and their sharp little stings, soon
told him so. They swarmed all around him, until he felt
as if he were covered with them, and the faster he ran, the
more they chased him. He could neither run away nor
hide from them. Not until he was well punished did they
leave him, tingling with pain, but resolved we hope, to
once more try to do better, and not to meddle.
POOR, SICK BRUIN.
ONCE upon a time when Jack Frost had commenced
to shake the leaves from the trees after first painting them
in bright crimson and glowing yellow, and some in
dull russet brown, Mr. Bruin fell sick. He had been to
a dance in the Kingston Woods. Miss Bunny had invited
him, and old Bruin had thought her the brightest, cunning-
est little creature he had met for many a long day. Of
course she was too tiny for him to dance with, but he sat
and chatted with her, which he really thought was much
pleasanter, at least he had thought so at the time, but now
he was paying for his frolic. The ground had been too
damp and cold and the chill winds had gotten into his
bones, and he was the most miserable fellow you could
possibly find. O dear," thought he, why was I so silly.
Well might I have known what folly it was to leave my
good warm home, and spend all those hours out in the chill
night air." But it was too late to sit and grumble over
follies that had been committed, so Bruin wrapped him-
self in a green plaid shawl, tied up his head in a red and
white handkerchief and sat down to wait for Dr. Wolf to
pass along. Dr. Wolf had been called upon to pay a visit
to a little sick guinea pig, and his way led him past old
Bruin's house. Bruin saw him, called to him and the doctor
came trotting in. He took off his tall black hat, laid it on
the table, put on his glasses and prepared to examine his
patient. The doctor felt his pulse, shook his head and
then looked at his tongue. Oh ho! my friend," said he
" you have caught a cold, that is certain, but my good fel-
low, I am afraid there is something more. I fear that you
feast too much upon the dainties of the land. Your larder
seems well filled with tempting food, but if you take my
advice you will leave this alone for awhile, and content
yourself with a good big bowl of mush and milk. You
have a very high fever, and if you eat of such rich food you
will surely die. I am going to put you to bed, and you
must not get up for a week, you are getting along in years,
so you must take extra care of yourself. I shall leave you
some pills to take every hour, unless you are asleep. I
shall be passing here again in the morning, and will drop
in to see you. I hope to find you much better." Then
the doctor went away, leaving Bruin a sadder and wiser
bear and resolved in the future to try to live more simply,
and to let his poorer neighbors share the dainties that
had proved his foe.
THE SQUIRREL'S VISITOR.
IN the Maple woods, just outside the town, lived an
old gray squirrel. He was a big squirrel and just as fat
as butter. One time, long ago, he had been caught in a
rat-trap, and his leg pretty badly torn. A bright-eyed,
red-cheeked bby had found him, and carefully and gently
had lifted the heavy wire frame and had taken Frisk out.
The poor little squirrel was hurt, and frightened, and the
boy felt sorry for him. He carried him home in his arms
and then wrapped him in a soft warm blanket and put
him in a basket. He meant to doctor his wounded leg
and keep him for a pet. Frisk, however did not like
this notion, and in the morning when the boy came to
find his prize, the basket was empty and Frisk had hop-
ped away on three legs.
Frisk was so frightened that he never got over it. He
lived in a hollow tree all by himself, and each night when
he put his night cap on, he slipped his pistol under his pil-
low. One night when the wind blew furiously and the
rain came dashing against the tree, Frisk sat all alone,
thinking how good it was to have such a nice warm
house and so many delicious nuts stored away, when
tap! tap! tap! came against the side of the house. Frisk
was frightened, but he grabbed his pistol and peeped cau-
tiously out of the door. Not a sign of any one could
he see, so he went quietly back. Tap! tap! tap! came
again. Once more Frisk looked out, and there stood a
poor, drenched wood-pecker. He had been out hunting
worms for his wife's supper, while she stayed home upon
the eggs. He had been overtaken by the storm and now
sought shelter with Frisky. How they laughed when
Frisky showed him his pistol and told him how frighten-
ed he was and that he had thought him a burglar.
Frisky insisted on his friend's coming in, and resting
with him in his comfortable snug little house until the
storm was over. Then he filled his friend's basket with.
the choicest bits his store-house afforded, and sent him
THE WOLF'S FIRST PARTY.
THI- Wolf had been invited to a party, and his head
was almost turned by this piece of good fortune, as he,
thought it. The Fox had sent him the invitation written
in big round letters on a piece of birch bark. Miss Fox
requests the presence of Mr. Wolf at a party in the hol-
low," the invitation read, and the Wolf felt as though he
had some standing in the world now, for never before had
any one called him Mr. Wolf.
He got up bright and early the morning of the event-
ful day, and hurried from among the leaf covered trees to
hunt for the sun, that was just showing her smiling face
above the hill, behind which she had hidden all through
the night. The Wolf gave her a friendly nod, and gazed
at the blue sky with feelings of the greatest pleasure. He
felt he could scarcely bear it if the rain should fall, for he
had almost reached the limit of his patience in waiting for
the party, and the rain would mean that he must wait still
longer. But on this bright spring morning there were
certainly no signs of rain. Early in the afternoon the
Wolf began getting ready. He washed his face and
hands in the little brook that
danced over the stones, and then
splashed and sang as it
as it grew broader, flowed
gently and silently along. The brook was the Wolf's
mirror too, and a pine cone served him for a comb. The
poor silly Wolf was ready hours before it was time to
start and he wondered if one always felt so anxious over
their entrance into society. He wondered too, if he were
really not more nervous than little Miss Fox.
But at last the time of departure arrived and the
Wolf started off. He most have something to carry for
he did not know what to do with his hands, so remember-
ing that some one had told him that you had better have
an umbrella and not want it, than to want it and not have
it, he carried his big green sun shade.
He was the first to arrive, and Miss Fox was so
pleasant and made him so welcome that he never felt so
happy before. Nor did this happiness end, for when all
the guests had taken leave, the Wolf remained to tell Miss
Fox that this had been the best and brightest time in all
his life. For many days he thought about the fine times
he had had at his first party, and wondered if he would
always have such fun, and if all the ladies were as nice
as Miss Fox.
DID you ever notice a number of black objects flying
through the air or perhaps assembled in a flock hunting
for worms, or caterpillars or grubs or maybe feasting on
some fallen grains? These are Crows, and if you could
examine them closely you would see how beautifully their
glossy, black wings are tinged with dull blue and brown
and purple. They are very shy and cunning and very
fearful of the farmer's gun, with which they seem to be
well acquainted. One of them serves as watchman, and
when he sees danger approaching he sounds the alarm,
and all the crows within hearing distance fly up and away.
The eggs of the crow are laid in nests made of sticks woven
with grasses and lined with soft roots, feathers, or wool.
Both the father and mother bird sit on the eggs, and
watch with great care over their young. The crow can
fly very swiftly, and sometimes to great heights, and it
can also fly long distances. Have you ever noticed one
perched on a cow or perhaps a sheep's back? It has
perched itself there to pick the worm out from the skin:
Their cry of Caw! Caw! Caw! is very ugly, and what a
din they make when they gather together in little parties
early in the morning to go in search of food, or else at
night when they are hunting for some pleasant roosting
place. The crow is a very brave bird and is not afraid to
attack the hawk that sometimes comes swooping down
upon it. Its sharp, black eyes are of great service in its
search for food-indeed it is upon this sense that it de-
pends and not upon the sense of smell. Its keen sight
also protects it from the attack of the enemy. Sometimes
you come across a crow that is perfectly white, but this
is not the case often. The crow makes a very amusing
and interesting pet, except that it has the bad habit of
stealing. Thousands of crows are killed every year by
traps or the farmer's gun, and often and often the poorlittle
young" ones are killed in their nests by the hands of cruel
and naughty boys. The crow does steal the farmer's grain
and pull up the young seedlings, but he would be less
merciless to the poor bird, if he only saw how much good
he does in destroying the worms and bugs, the mice and
moles, which really eat up lots and lots more than- the
much abused, black crow. Sometimes the farmers set up
" scare-crows in the fields to frighten the thieves away,
but they soon learn that it is only a make-believe man,
and are not afraid.
JACK FROST was raging around in all his fury; great
white flakes fell thick and fast and settled one above the
other upon the ground, making a blanket soft and warm
for the little plants that lay hidden under the earth. The
trees moaned and shook their boughs as the wind went
whistling through them, and the little snow birds hopped
gracefully from limb to limb hoping to find a stray worm
or bug to satisfy their hungry little selves.
Bruin had started bright and early that morning to
visit his cousin, a brown bear who lived in the woods be-
yond the school-house. It was a long journey, but Bruin
cared little for that for he knew the way, and. knew also
the good times that he and Cousin Bear enjoyed together.
Well he remembered his last visit. What sport they had
playing ten pins, with sticks for pins and stones for balls.
How they enjoyed the game of catch with the big horse
chestnuts that fell from their prickly coverings and lay
scattered on the ground. The snow had put a stop to
ten pins and catch, but it had brought sport of its own,
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for what better fun could two young bears want than a
3olly game of snow-ball or a ride on the school-house hill.
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lolly game of snow-ball~or a ride on the school-house hill.
With all these good times dancing in his head Bruin
started off. Mother Nature had given him him a thick
furry coat, but old Jack Frost did his best to pierce
through this heavy brown covering, and'make him hurry
along to keep good and warm. The school-house came
in sight as he turned the last corner, and Cousin Bear's
home was soon reached.
How glad Cousin Bear was to see him. They chatted
away as busy as beavers, for there was so much to tell
and so much to hear, but all was told at last, and then
arose the question-what next to do. Snow balling was
fun for awhile, but their paws got too cold. They could
not go up on the hill for all the school children were out
with their sleds, and there certainly was not room for them
"Let's have game of hide and seek," said Cousin Bear.
Bruin liked that idea and cheerfully consented.
Cousin Bear shut his eyes and Bruin hurried off to find
some good hiding place. First he tried one and then
another, but nothing suited him until at last the very
thing met his gaze. Time had worn a great hole in an
old oak tree. There it stood bending its leafless limbs as
though beckoning Bruin to crawl inside. Such a splendid
chance could not be missed. My! how good and warm it
was. Bruin was tired, and before he knew it he had gone
sound asleep. How long he slept he did not know, but
when he opened his eyes the shadows had crept heavily
over the woods and night was coming on apace. Cousin
Bear started in surprise when Bruin rushed breathlessly
into his house, for as he could not find him he thought he
had gone home, and then how he laughed when Bruin
told of his hiding place, and they both thought it a great
joke that Bruin had fallen asleep, while he was playing.
He said he would remember to look there for him next
time they had a game.
Bruin warmed himself by the bright fire, and then
said he must be going. Cousin Bear would.not hear a
a word to his leaving until they had had supper. So he
set out the very best his store house afforded, and they
both had a very merry time, eating the turkey, and fat
little lamb which the bear had stolen the night before.
When they had cleared the table and washed the dishes,
Bruin trotted off towards his home, as fast as he could.
It was dark before he reached his own woods, but he was
not afraid for he knew every step of the way. He was
pretty well tired out when he got home, and it did not
take him very long to get ready for bed. As he curled
himself up for a good long sleep, he felt satisfied over a
very happy day.
THE STORK'S SUIT.
THE earth had put on a carpet of the softest green, and
cowslips, daffodils and the bright eyed crocuses popped
up their little heads from beneath this new covering. A
misty veil covered the trees, and the song of the birds
seemed to be saying to all nature, Waken! Waken, for
spring is here again !"
The maids at the great house must have heard their
song for the whole place seemed to be in a quiver of ex-
citement. What a commotion it was after the dullness of
of winter, everything had been so quiet-but now windows
were thrown open and air and sunshine both entered the
rooms and bobbed in and out of the darkest corners.
Maybe you have guessed what all this flurry meant-
'twas nothing more nor less than the bustle of spring
One morning one of the maids stretched a long line
between two of the trees on the lawn, and then began
hanging up numberless clothes-the suits of winter to be
sure-getting them ready to pack in the strong cedar
Perhaps Jane thought she was not being watched,
but she was much mistaken if she did, for the stork that
lives in the park close by had seen it all, and a plan had
been growing in his brain.
The stork was a vain bird, he had been much admired
by the people who visited the park, and the desire to own
a suit of clothes had taken full possession of him. Now
was his chance, he thought, so when Jane left the lawn
he stole quietly in through the gate and with his long
beak drew the pegs from the clothes, tucked them under
his wing and started back again. 'Twas Father's dress
coat and Fred's bicycle trousers he had taken, but that
made no difference to the stork. He had hard work get-
ting into his rig, but as he gazed at himself in the shining
waters in the lake, he felt well satisfied with his appear.
Of course he could not see his back and so did not
know just how funny he did look. He called all his
friends and neighbors to see his new treasure, thinking
they would all envy him because of his good fortune.
He was greatly displeased and mortified when they
all began to criticize and poke fun at him. Each one had
a suggestion to make as to how the clothes might be made
to fit better, and he, willing to please all, began to take in
here, and let out there, until he thought he had it just
about right. Then he put the suit on once more. Oh,
my, how they all did laugh, and what sport they made of
him. They made so much fun of him that he got out of
the clothes much faster than he got into them, and sorrow-
fully and humbly made up his mind to be satisfied with
what nature had given him, rather than strive to be some-
thing different from what he was.
Surely this was a wise thing to do, for his pretty
feathers were much more becoming than the borrowed
finery he had put on.