c 1I s ".
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Town or City
The Baldwin Library
Young Folk's Library of Choice Literature.
EDUCATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY
NEW YORK CHICAGO SAN FRANCISCO
By EDUCATIONAL PUBLISHING COMPANY.
Mother Nature's Workshop 7
The Wren's Nest 14
The Swallows. The Swallow's Nest 20
Mother Butterfly's Baby *. 21
All Things Beautiful 28
The Blue Lupine 29
The South Wind and the Dandelion 32
Dick's Story 35
Sir Robin ........39
Mrs. Willow's Awaking 41
The Little Tree's Dream 46
Trimming a Bird's Nest with Lace 47
The Easter Lily 49
The Brown Thrush 53
The Yellow Bird's Story 54
The Sumach 56
The Boy who Hated Trees 58
The Oriole's Nest 67
Jake and the Wheel 70
Edith's Choice of Flowers 73
Birds in Summer 75
Birds of the Air 78
The Willow Tree 81
The Little Spruce 82
The Horse Chestnuts 84
Out for a Frolic
An Umbrella Nest .
A Bird Kite
The O'Lincoln Family
A Caterpillar Story. .
The Mystery of the Seed .
The Lark and the Rook
The Old Oak Tree's Christmas Dream
Plant a Tree
What the Grasshopper said to Annie
The Oak Leaves .
The Fir Tree
The Bird's Housekeeping
Robert of Lincoln
How the Cloud-specks became Snowflakes
The Old Fence
The North Wind and the Snow Princess
A Child to a Rose
Being a Frog
Lady Bird, Lady Bird
Who Stole the Bird's Nest
A Boy that Loved Birds
Don't kill the Birds
The violet blooms with every Spring,
With every Spring the breezes blow,
And once again the robins sing
A song more sweet than June can know.
44 .: A
MOTHER NATURE'S WORKSHOP.
By GRACE GOODRIDGE.
Teddy had never been in so strange a place
before. He didn't just know how he happened
to be there now, but he didn't care much, it
was all so nice and pleasant. Just then he
spied a little old woman such a funny little
old woman bending over a table and working
away at tiny scraps of gray fur.
"How do you do?" said Teddy.
"Oh, how do you do?" answered the old
woman, looking up.
"Are you surprised to see me ?"
"Not a bit of it," said the old woman, laugh-
ing. Not nearly so surprised as you are to
be here. I saw you coming."
Did you? Could you tell me how I
"Tumbled," said the little woman.
Oh! Teddy felt himself all over, but he
wasn't hurt. Then he looked at the little
woman, who seemed to be working very hard
"Why don't you ask me who I am?" she
said. Well, never mind, I'll tell you. I'm
Mother Nature, and this is where I live and
take care of my children. You would call it
under the ground, but I call it my work-room.
Wait a bit till I finish these, and I'll show you
Teddy came very near and sat down.
"Would you please tell me what you are
making? he asked.
Jackets," promptly responded Mother Na-
ture. Jackets for my pussies. They are such
restless little creatures I can't keep them at
home a minute after they hear the first spring
Oh," said Teddy, delighted, I know all
about them. They're the Pussy Willows, and
these are their little fur coats. Oh, do let me
take one in my hand."
Be careful of it," said Mother Nature, as
she handed him one. They are very tender,
for all they are so warm."
"And now I remember," said Teddy. I
was off hunting for pussies when I tumbled
here." Are any of them out yet ? "
"Dear me, yes, I'm afraid so, and it is so
early. But my good friend, the Sun, looks
kindly upon them, and even the North Wind
has a soft spot in his breezy old heart for
"And we like them, too," said Teddy.
"They come so early, and sometimes it
freezes after they're out, but they don't seem
Oh, dear, no," said Mother Nature. Their
coats are so warm they don't feel it. But come,
now, and we'll look about a little."
So Mother Nature led the way and Teddy
trotted after her. They had not gone far when
they spied a shelf full of tiny pink bonnets.
What are those?" asked Teddy.
Those? Oh, those are my spring beauties.
They don't mind the snow nor feel the wind,
their little red stems have such warm blood in
them. So I let them go up almost as early as
my pussies. And then here are my ferns.
Just look at them!"
Mother Nature was delighted with the ferns,
which were all ready to push up through the
earth and unfold their broad green leaves.
But Teddy thought they looked like tiny
And you know we can find ferns any time,"
I know you can," said Mother Nature. I
never call them home after they once go up,
but these are the little new leaves for spring,
and I send them to waken their sisters who
sleep all winter under the leaves."
"What's in this room? asked Teddy, trying
to look through a little green door.
Mother Nature opened it just enough for
Teddy to peep in.
"Smell of them," she said.
"Oh-oo! cried Teddy, violets. How sweet
Not half so sweet as they will be before
they're ready for the world to see," said Mother
Nature; but they're dear, beautiful children
always, and I love them."
Now here is something nearly ready," said
Mother Nature, opening the very next door.
" These are my next care, and they're always in
a hurry. I do believe they would go this
minute if I would let them. Next to the
snow-drops which I can't keep home at all-
they are the most daring of my children. But
these must wait a week or so longer."
It will still be cold then," said Teddy.
I know it will," answered Mother Nature,
"but I don't worry very much, for their last
year's leaves are always there to keep them
Oh, do you mean hepaticas? asked Teddy.
You know them, do you? Mother
Nature smiled kindly on the boy. "I always
love those who love my children," she said.
Teddy was about to speak when he heard a
swift step as soft as the patter of rain. He
looked up, and there, running toward them, was
a little fairy-like creature with flying hair and
Spring! cried Mother Nature, delighted,
and holding out both hands in welcome.
Teddy was sure he had never seen any one
half so sweet before. Her curls were golden
like the sun, and her blue eyes seemed like bits
of sky. Her gown was soft and white as a
cloud, and she wore a fluttering green sash.
"Dearest Mother! she cried, as she came
running along, I am all ready to go up now.
Where are the pussies, and may I take the
arbutus ? "
My dear little girl!" Mother Nature
kissed her lovingly. Take the pussies and
run along, but let me keep the arbutus a while
longer. You will find quite enough to do, with
the trees to dress and the birds to welcome."
She kissed her again, and the little girl ran on
Spring is so eager," said Mother Nature.
"She looks very gentle," said Teddy."
She means to be so," said Mother Nature
watching her. Then she turned again to
Perhaps you'd better run along with her,"
she said. It's really a little late for a boy to
be down here." So Teddy said good-bye,"
and ran along with the little girl.
"I'm going up close by your home," said
Are you ? cried Teddy, clapping his hands.
" Then I shall see the inside-outs of my garden,
"We are right under it this minute," said
Spring, with a little laugh.
Teddy looked up -hut there was the blue
sky above him and the nodding branches of a
I must have been asleep," he said drowsily;
" but never mind, for Spring has come, and -
oh, goody! here are some pussies !"
THE WREN'S NEST.
By ALICE L. BECKWITH.
Such a lively set of boys and girls as were
gathered on the front porch you never saw.
It was Dolly's birthday, and about a dozen
children had been invited to take tea with her.
What can we play now? panted Dolly, as
she sank down on the steps all out of breath,
after chasing Jack Dickson upon the hay
"Oh, what do you think I've found?" called
little Tommy Schooner, dancing around the
Oh what? they all exclaimed. Guess "
" A penny, most likely," said Phil.
"No sir, come and see;" and Tommy led the
way, the rest following.
At one end of the back piazza was a long
bench covered with stone crocks or jars,
turned bottom side up. The crocks were
stacked one above another in big piles. One
stack was pushed slightly over the edge, so
that there was a hole up under them.
Tommy got down on the floor and looked
up under the stack.
Look there," he said in great satisfaction,
and three or four boys joined him.
Oh, don't you touch that," cried Dolly in
great alarm. "Be careful, Tommy. Come
"Pooh!" exclaimed one of the boys, "it's
nothing but a bird's nest."
"Well, you leave it alone," cried Dolly,
almost angry at the boys' heedlessness.
"That's. my wrens' nest. They built it when
I had the measles in April. Oh, they were so
cunning! I used to sit by the window and
watch them. They brought straws four or
five times as long as they were themselves to
put into the nest. Dear little fellows, they
worked so hard I Sometimes they would get
a straw nearly up to the crock, and the wind
would blow it away, and they would have to
try over again.
Mamma put some little bits of worsted
out there on purpose for them, and they put
those in, and rags, and chicken feathers, and
grass, and lots of things. They made it with
a roof, so that when Mamma Wren is inside,
all you can see is her bill.
One day, when I got better, I looked in and
there were six little mites of eggs kind of
white with little specks of red and brown."
Why didn't you keep 'em ? asked Bob.
The idea! cried Susie. I should think
you'd be ashamed, Bob Jenkins !"
"Why, of course I wouldn't touch them for
anything," said Dolly. And one day I saw
the Papa Wren keep flying out of the nest
with something in his mouth that he would
drop under that tree. I went out to see what it
was, he went so many times, and I found lots
of little pieces of egg shells; and when I
looked in the nest, instead of eggs there were
six little birds about as big as two little grains
of corn, one grain for the head and another
for the body."
Oh, let's see 'em," said Phil. Let's lift
the crock up."
The mother bird's in their now," said
Tommy. I saw her fly in."
"Come away and let it be still here and
perhaps she will come out," said Dolly. So
they went back to the front lawn.
On the carpet here we stand,"
sang the children's voices, as one after another
was called into the ring;, and all was quiet on
the back piazza.
Mamma Wren peeped shyly out, and,
finding the coast clear, started off in search of
This was what Algernon Fitzgerald had
been waiting for. Now was his chance, and
he stole noiselessly across the grass, climbed
upon the bench, and began a search for those
birds. He had said nothing while the children
were talking, but he had made up his mind to
have the first peep.
Come, Phil, its your turn to call some one
into the ring," said Nan, when,- what was
that ?- Such a cry as came from the back of
0, my!" cried Dolly, her face growing
pale, my birds! and they all followed her to
the spot where a fierce battle was taking
It seems Algernon, surprised by the unex-
pected return of Mamma Wren, had lost his
balance and fallen to the floor; and before
he could scramble to his feet, Mamma Wren
flew at him. What a fuss that mite of a
bird did make! Up and down, back and
forth, around his head she went, until Papa
Wren, hearing the alarm, joined in the fray.
How they did scream at him and scold him!
Neither of them touched him, but they flew so
near him that he crouched there, big coward
that he was, acting as if he expected any
minute to have his eyes pecked right out of
It was the funniest kind of a sight, the birds
were so tiny, and Algernon was so big.
Why Algernon Fitzgerald Fremont," cried
Dolly, stamping her foot, "you are the
wickedest boy that ever lived, and you shan't
have a bit of supper to-night."
Come, children, tea is ready," called Mrs.
Fremont, and Algernon Fitzgerald took this
occasion to slink off to the barn with drooping
Papa lifted the crock very gently after
supper, so that all the children could look
inside and see the curious nest.
The wren stayed there until the little ones
were fully grown, and though they came back
the next year and built another nest in the
very same place, Algernon was never known
to molest them. He would sometimes sit
near by, and open his eyes as he heard the
chirping of the birds while they were being
fed, but the memory of that May battle kept
him at a safe distance.
\ -- -
lBy EDWIN ARNOLD.
Gallant and gay in their doublets gray,
All at a flash like the darting of flame,
Chattering Arabic, African, Indian-
Certain of springtime, the swallows came !
Doublets of gray silk and surcoats of purple,
And ruffs of russet round each little throat,
Wearing such garb they had crossed the waters,
Mariners sailing with never a boat.
THE SWALLOW'S NEST.
By EDu\IN ARNOLD.
Day after day her nest she moulded,
Building with magic, love and mud,
A gray cup made by a thousand journeys,
And the tiny beak was trowel and hod.
MOTHER BUTTERFLY'S BABY.
By KATE WHITING PATCH.
Mother Butterfly was hunting about for a
green cradle in which to lay her baby. The
baby was still asleep, curled up in the tiniest
of tiny egg shells. At last Mother Butterfly
alighted upon a tender green birch leaf that
was swaying gently in the summer breeze.
This will be a beautiful cradle," she said,
"for the breezes will rock my baby when he is
sleepy, and the leaf, so young and tender, it is
just the food he will need."
So Mother Butterfly laid the tiny, tiny egg
on the very tip of the young birch leaf, and
then she flew away, knowing that Mother
Nature would take care of her baby. -
Several days passed, and then a tiny baby
caterpillar crawled out of the little egg. The
very first thing he did was to eat every bit of
his egg shell.
Mother Nature told him that he must not
leave any of it lying about, lest some bigger
creature, who likes to eat baby caterpillars,
should see the shell and know that he was
The egg shell was not enough to satisfy his
hunger, however, and he soon began nibbling
the edges of the green leaf.
It tasted very good, and so he nibbled and
nibbled, and finally he had eaten away the tip
of the leaf on both sides of the long rib that
runs down the middle-the back-bone of the
Little caterpillar was careful to leave that, for
Mother Nature had told him that the mid-rib
of the leaf would be the very nicest place for
him to lie upon when he wanted rest after his
He was just about the same color as the leaf,
and no one would be likely to see him there.
The birch'leaf was a very pleasant cradle,
and the baby caterpillar was rocked to sleep
every night by the breezes and was bathed
every morning with the sweet dew.
He was a very hungry baby, and spent much
of his time nibbling the green leaf, and of
course he slept a great deal, too, and grew
bigger every day.
I must tell you of one funny thing he did.
Out of bits of leaves and spun silk he made
tiny soft balls, which he always rolled close
to the eaten edge of the leaves, and then left
them there when he went down to the tip of the
mid-rib to take his nap.
Perhaps he thought that the hungry creatures
who wanted to find him would look at these
balls instead; perhaps he made them to hide
behind when he was eating. Maybe they
were just his playthings. All babies like balls.
By and by, he had grown so much bigger that
Mother Nature thought he needed a new suit
of clothes, and so he crawled out of his first
baby dress, and then, when he had rested a little,
what do you think he did? Why, he ate up
his old clothes -yes, every bit, just as he had
eaten his egg shell.
Before the little caterpillar had grown a
great deal bigger, the nights began to be chilly,
and the leaves of the birch tree on which he
lived were slowly turning yellow.
Winter is coming," whispered Mother
Nature. "You cannot stay out in the sun-
shine much longer, little caterpillar. Come,
build your house and crawl into it."
So the little caterpillar began to build his
winter home. He had been born on the tip of
the birch leaf; this leaf had been his cradle
and his dinner table, and now out of it he is
going to build his house.
He carefully ate away until all that was left
of the leaf were two small flaps on either side
of the mid-rib, near the stem; then the little
caterpillar stopped eating and began to spin.
He traveled slowly over the flaps of green,
and pretty soon they were covered with a thick
carpet of soft, brown silk.
When this was done, he carefully drew the
flaps together until they met overhead, and then
bound them round and round with soft threads
of silk, that fastened them firmly to the mid-rib.
Then little caterpillar stood on the porch of
his little house and looked into it. He
thought it so nice and soft and warm that he
would like to take a nap in it that minute.
The air was getting chilly too; so he just
glanced about at the big world once, crawled
head first into his cozy house, with its silken
carpet and hangings, and then closed the
door behind him.
He heard the breezes whispering outside,
but they only made him more sleepy, and he
was soon ready for his winter nap.
He knew that when the cold winds came they
could not get into his snug dwelling; and per-
haps the snow would drift up about it, like a
soft, woolly blanket, and keep him warmer
Perhaps, too, through his long winter sleep,
little caterpillar will dream of the springtime,
when he can open the door of his tiny home
and creep out on to his sunny porch again.
Then Mother Nature will give him another
suit of clothes, and before long he will spin
himself another silken nest and hide away
again; but after that he will not be a furry
caterpillar any more.
When he comes out of that second silken
cradle and feels the warm sunshine touching
him tenderly, he will have two beautiful, great
wings to lift him from the earth and carry him
above the nodding flowers and grasses.
How beautiful it must be for a drowsy little
caterpillar to dream of the hour when he will
become a great, free, glorious butterfly!
ALL THINGS BEAUTIFUL.
lyv MRS. C. F. AI.EXANDI"jR.
All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.
Each little flower that opens,
Each little bird that sings,
He made their glowing colors,
He made their tiny wings.
The purple-headed mountain,
The river running by,
The morning, and the sunset
That lighteth up the sky.
The tall trees in the greenwood,
The pleasant summer sun,
The ripe fruits in the garden,
He made them every one.
He gave us eyes to see them,
And lips that we might tell,
How great is God Almighty,
Who hath made all things well.
THE BLUE LUPINE.
By 0. S. (;iLlUELr.
"Oh, dear!" said Dame Nature one day,
"that strange creature, man, is always doing
something that he calls useful. He has cut
here through one of my pretty hills to lay an
ugly looking railroad track. In place of the
beautiful slope of the hill, there is nothing now
but this sandy bank. What shall I do with
it? Come, children," she said, I need you.
How can you help me to bring back some
beauty to this bare looking place ? "
Well, mother," said the sturdy Poplar, I
don't care a bit where I live, so I'll cling just as
hard as I can to this steep bank. My strong
roots will keep the sand from washing away,
and make the bank firm."
I'm not very pretty," said the Sweet Fern
softly waving his sweet-smelling leaves, but
I'll grow and spread all I can. Perhaps my
dark green coat will add a little beauty here."
One by one the plain green things offered
We'll do our very best, mother, and try to
spread our green leaves all over this sandy
I am quite sure you will," replied the good
Dame, but I want something more. I wonder
if some of my flower children wouldn't make a
little brightness and color."
Dear me! "said the Rose, my place is in
the garden where there is rich, moist earth. I
couldn't grow, or even live here; so I cannot
The Lily drooped her pure white head,
saying; I am so sorry, but I, too, need a
I'll go," said a faint little voice that seemed
made up of many tones. I'll go and do the
best I can."
All the other flowers looked to see who had
"Why, it's only little Blue Lupine," they
said; the idea of her offering to help."
The little flower trembled in every tiny bell,
but she found courage to say, I am not very
beautiful, I know, but I'll just grow and be as
cheery as I can."
And so the sandy bank became a most beau.
tiful place; for it was all covered with fresh
green leaves, and among them sweetly smiled
the blue-eyed Lupine.
A traveler, looking out of the car window
one day, saw all this beauty and it seemed to
teach this lesson: always to do our best and
try to grow good and sweet even in a hard
place. This was the way the little Lupine
helped, and she never knew all the good she
THE SOUTH WIND AND THE
By MARA I,. PRATT.
The South Wind lay rocking in his soft
cloud-hammock under the southern sky.
The air was very soft and warm, the sun
shining brightly on the earth.
The South Wind looked away towards the
north. It was very beautiful there, for the
grass was just beginning to grow green, and
the sky was very blue.
But what is that beautiful yellow flower
among the green grass?" the South Wind
said. I do not remember of ever seeing that
And the South Wind looked and looked.
How bright and beautiful!" he sighed.
" Surely I will go and gather those yellow
But the South Wind was very lazy. He
liked to stretch out in his hammock and look
up at the soft sky.
Each morning he said, I will go to those
bright golden flowers to-day;" but the days
went by, and still the South Wind lay swing-
ing in his hammock.
At last, one morning the South Wind said,
"To-day I will go to my beautiful golden
flowers! How lazy I have been! And there
are no flowers in all the earth so rich and
yellow. I will surely go to-day.
But alas! when the South Wind turned his
face towards the north and rose to go to the
flowers, behold they were all gone.
Not a yellow flower was to be seen in all the
fields of the north.
But in their places stood flowers with crowns
of shining white.
What had happened? The South Wind
could not tell.
"Are these the golden flowers turned
white?" he asked.
Or are they different flowers ?
"Or has my brother, the North Wind,
breathed his frost upon them ? "
Then the South Wind sighed and sighed.
His sighs reached away up to the fields where
the golden flowers had bloomed.
And what do you suppose happened then?
Why, the little white crowns rose in the air,
and scattered themselves like feathers over the
"See the dandelion seeds! the children
But the South Wind never understood; but
all summer long he sighed, and said, Those
beautiful golden flowers shall never escape me
again! It was very strange! "
-s "k" '
I am only a canary. All day long I used to
hang in a window where the sun never came.
Such a narrow cage had I that I could not
turn about without rumpling my plumage; and
it was so dirty!
In the daytime the kitchen stove, which was
near me, made the room so hot that I often
grew faint and dizzy and almost fell from my
In the night I grew cold and trembled; for
there was no fire there, and the cold winds and
damp came in through the loose window-
My only solace was my song, but even that
they would stop, sometimes, by covering my
cage, or carrying me away to a cold, dark room,
because I sang so loud.
You will hardly think any one could be so
cruel; but what I say is true.
One night I took cold and could sing no
more. I had been very hungry; for the seeds
in my dish were so old and hard that I could
only crack one now and then, but now I could
I tucked my head under my wing, and I
wished I could die, but nobody seemed to care.
All at once I heard a voice say," Why, what is
the matter with your Dicky? "
I looked up and saw a strange face close to
my cage; but I was not afraid, for there were
big tears in those eyes, and I thought they
flashed a little when they saw the dirty floor of
Then a hand lifted me gently down, wrapped
a shawl round my cage, and carried me over
the fields to a new home.
Oh, what a bright room I saw! full of
sunshine and flowers, and birds! Birds and
I had not seen one, except a little sparrow who
used to come outside my window, for a long,
long time. They all chirped a" Good-morning"
to me, but I was too weak to answer.
My new mistress took me out of my dirty
prison and set me in the sun among the plants.
She came back soon with a clean, roomy cage,
set me carefully and tenderly on one of the
clean perches, and hung me up between two
bright little birds.
I wonder how she came by so many.
There were bright, clean seeds and fresh
water in the dishes, and a warm paper, sprinkled
with fresh sand, at the bottom of the cage.
You don't know, children, how pleased I was
with them all. I could not eat the seed, though;
so she brought a bit of warm, hard-boiled egg
and held it out to me. I was a little afraid, but
it looked so good that I crept across my perch
and took a wee bit. It tasted good and did not
hurt my throat as the hard seeds did; so I took
another bite, and then another.
I cannot think why the lady should cry at.
that, I am sure, but cry she did; I saw her.
When I grew tired of the egg, she brought me
other dainties, till I grew stronger and felt
better, and could crack the nice seeds.
One day, when the sun was brighter than
usual, and the air in the room was fresh and
sweet, I tried to sing. The notes quavered a
good deal, but I found I had not forgotten
Mistress praised me a good deal and said,
" Now you can be this little birdie's music
teacher." So she hung us opposite each other,
and every day we would practise together.
Now he can sing as well as I, and we have
Sometimes mistress plays just below us, and
we both try to make ourselves heard above the
I am not at all afraid of mistress now, and I
have great frolics chasing her finger around
Sometimes, when she can stop work, I sit on
her finger and dress my feathers; and when
she kisses my wing, as she often does, I peck
her lips and face.
I am a happy bird now; but I often fear that
my brothers and sisters in other homes are
suffering as I did. Will you please look
out for them, children ?
Rollicking robin is here again.
What does he care for the April rain?
Care for it? Glad of it. Doesn't he know
That the April rain carries off the snow,
And coaxes out leaves to shadow his nest,
And washes his pretty red Easter vest,
And makes the juice of the cherry sweet,
For his hungry little robins to eat?
Ha! ha! ha! hear the jolly bird laugh,
That isn't the best of the story by half! "
Gentleman Robin, he walks up and down,
Dressed in his orange-tawny and black and brown.
Though his eye is so proud and his step so firm,
He can always stoop to pick up a worm.
With a twist of his head, and a strut and a hop,
To his Robin-wife in the peach-tree top,
Chirping her heart out, he calls: My dear,
You don't earn your living! Come here! Come here!
Ha! ha! ha! Life is lovely and sweet;
But what would it be if we'd nothing to eat? "
Robin, Sir Robin, gay, red-vested knight,
Now you have come to us, summer's in sight.
You never dream of the wonders you bring, -
Visions that follow the flash of your wing.
How all the beautiful By-and-by
Around you and after you seems to fly!
Sing on, or eat on, as pleases your mind !
Well have you earned every morsel you find.
"Ay! Ha! ha! ha! whistles robin, My dear,
Let us all take our own choice of good cheer! "
MRS. WILLOW'S AWAKING.
By MARY S. CAMPBELI..
Where are you going ?" asked West Wind
as she met South Wind flying gaily along.
Come with me," said South Wind, I can't
stop to talk now, for this is my busy time. I
am going to the swamp to waken Mrs.
May I help you?" said West Wind.
So they took hold of hands and away they
flew, frolicking and dancing over wood and
meadow, till they reached the edge of the
Wake up, wake up! Mrs. Willow," said
South Wind, you've slept long enough."
But Mrs. Willow did not stir. Then West
Wind helped South Wind to shake her, and
together they waved her branches to and fro
till she began to bestir herself and said
sleepily, What's the matter?"
Time to get awake, that's all," said South
Wind. Mother Earth sent me to tell you she
thought you had slept long enough," and as
Mrs. Willow felt his warm breath, she said:-
"Thank you for waking me so gently, dear
South Wind, but is it March already? "
Then she began to stretch out her arms to
let her sap blood flow through them.
It is good to get awake again," she said to
the two winds who were still hovering gently
about her. I've had such a long sound sleep
that now I am glad to go to work."
Then some merry little sunbeams came
dancing along, and said, "Good day! Mrs.
Willow, we've tried to wake you many times,
but our kisses did not arouse you. May we
help to waken your children?"
"Thank you!" she said, they are still
warmly wrapped in their winter blankets and
you shall help me to uncover them."
South Wind and West Wind saw that Mrs.
Willow was wide awake; so they bade her a
cheery good-bye and flew off to awaken some
more of her family.
The little sunbeam nurse-maids went to
work and touched each tiny blanket with their
soft, warm fingers, while Mrs. Willow was kept
very busy sending her sap food to the babies.
It was not many days before South Wind came
blowing that way again.
Why Mrs. Willow," he exclaimed, who
ever would have recognized you ?" And sure
enough, she had all her children awake and
each branch was covered with little pussies
in soft, silvery gray coats.
You see, dear South Wind," she said, I
cannot take off their fur coats quite yet, for
North Wind still visits us, and he is so rough
with my tender darlings that I keep them well
Then South Wind and the little sunny
nurse-maids had a frolic with the pussies,"
and they grew so warm in their play that they
had to throw off their gray coats; and when
Mother Willow saw them dressed in their pale
yellow gowns, she said, It is too soon, dear
South Wind; my babies will surely die."
But South Wind only laughed and said,
"Mother Earth told me you were too careful
of your children, and that it was high time
they were out of the nursery."
So Mrs. Willow knew the time had come
when she must let her babies go. She felt
sorry, for their gray coats had been so pretty.
I am very thirsty, dear South Wind," said
Mrs. Willow; but she told her that she had been
blowing a little cloud along just ahead of her-
self, and she would ask it to lend her a shower.
So away she flew. Soon all the pussies"
began to wonder what was hitting them so
hard, and they were frightened; but their
mother told them it was only some rain drops
come to play with them.
Then being no longer afraid, they nodded
to the raindrops, and a fine play they had
together, till so many raindrops joined in the
frolic that the pussies were nearly drowned.
But Mrs. Willow was very happy; she took long
drinks with her roots and felt much better.
Soon the kind cloud floated away, and the
little sun nursemaids had to dry and warm all
the wet little pussies," and South Wind came
back and blew on them gently with his warm
breath, and soon they were all frolicking with
him again as if nothing had happened.
Then Mrs. Willow dressed them all alike in
yellow gowns; and how gay she looked as she
held them all up on her branches.
She spied her friend, Song Sparrow, and
called to him, Can't you stop Song Sparrow
to see my children in their new spring gowns ? "
So he rested awhile; and he told Mrs. Willow
how glad he was that the long, cold winter was
over, and thanked her for waking so soon to
cheer him. Then away he flew to tell his
wife the good news.
THE LITTLE TREE'S DREAM.
By CORA S. DAY.
A pretty little maple
That grew upon a hill,
Where sun and wind and shower
Had played with it at will,
Fell fast asleep one evening,
Beneath the moon's pale light,
And while asleep it had a dream
That gave it such a fright!
It dreamed it saw an army,
All armed with shovels there,
Come marching up the hillside
And lay its rootlets bare.
And then they raised it softly,
Out of its earthy bed,
And down the hill they carried it,
With light and joyous tread.
It wakened in the sunlight,
And found its dream was true;
For there within a school-yard,
Where storm winds never blew,
It found itself surrounded
By the children bright and gay,
Who carefully had planted it
Upon their Arbor Day.
TRIMMING A BIRD'S NEST WITH
By M. L. P.
Miss Margaret had
some fine, beautiful
lace. The lace was
very old and soft and
yellow. It was her
mother's once and
Margaret was very
proud of it. She
would not trust the
servants to wash it
even, she was so
afraid they might
harm it. So she
washed it herself, most carefully, and spread
it on the fresh, green grass to dry. In a few
minutes, Margaret went out to look at it;
when behold! one piece was gone. Margaret
looked everywhere for the thief, but no one
could be seen.
She sat down on the piazza to think. The
tears came in her eyes. What was she to do?
She turned to speak with some one about it,
and, behold! another piece had disappeared.
This was strange indeed. No person had
come and taken it this time, she was sure.
She sat down again to watch. Soon the
mystery was solved. A fine big robin came
hopping along. He picked up a piece of the
lace and away he flew.
Margaret watched him fly straight up into
the big elm tree. That was where her lace
She called John, the gardener, who, climbing
the tree, soon found the robin's nest. There
were five little eggs in it; and all around the
edge was draped the soft, yellow lace.
It looked very pretty, and though Margaret
thought it very nice in Mr. Robin to want to
make his home beautiful, she told him he
must be content with decorations not quite so
expensive as fine old yellow lace.
THE EASTER LILY.
By MARA L. PRATT.
0 dear!" Elsie sighed. I do wish my
Easter lilies would keep themselves white and
clean. I wonder why they will spill their
pollen all over their petals so."
Why, doesn't this little girl know how my
pollen gets on my petals?" the lily thought.
"It is strange. Now, I would not have it
different for anything."
It was just at twilight when Elsie said this;
the darkness was shutting down fast and the
soft dew was falling.
I half believe these lilies grow sweeter as
the night comes on," she said, again breathing
in a long deep breath.
Why, of course," said the lily to a big-eyed
night-flyer moth over the fence, who sat
patiently waiting for Elsie to go away.
Did you hear what that little girl said ?"
asked the lily of her friend.
Yes, indeed," said the night-flyer.
Strange she cannot see what is so plain to
Do you mean my tongue ?" said the moth,
uncoiling it to look.
It is long enough, I am sure," answered
the lily sweetly.
That is because you hide your nectar away
down in the bottom of your cup. How could I
reach it if I had not this long tongue?"
If you weren't such a flighty creature,
stopping only a second or two at each flower,
perhaps I should not have to hide my honey
so far from you," said the lily.
The moth wriggled his antennae, and stared
with his big eyes at the little girl. He didn't
care to answer the lily's last remark. He pre-
tended not to hear it. He knew well enough
he was a giddy moth, and that he should take
very little pollen from the lily if she did not
force him to push his head down into the cup
and so get it covered with heavy pollen. So
he turned himself around and made believe
look at the rose-bush outside the gate.
Dear me!" said the lily; is night-flyer
going away? He must not. I have loads of
pollen ready for him. It is just ripe enough.
He must come and ge( "t. I wonder if he can
see me. It is rather dark, still I have made
myself as white as I can," and the lily called to
the soft breezes to lift her sweet face toward
That little girl has stayed so long," said
the night-flyer. I can see in the dark, to be
sure; still, I would rather fly about in the
Now, dear wind," said the lily, please
waft this sweet odor to the 'moth. He will
come for that, I am sure, for it will remind
him of the nectar."
So the wind came; the air grew heavy with
the lily's sweetness. The night-flyer wiggled
his antennae again--this time with delight;
for it did remind him of the nectar; and be-
sides that, it helped to guide him in the dark-
ness straight to the lily bell.
"Thank you! Thank you !" whispered the
moth, when he had drank his fill. "And now
good-bye till another night."
Thank you," said the lily; for she saw that
his fuzzy little head was covered with the yellow
pollen and that he would be sure to drop it
somewhere in good time and in the right place.
THE BROWN THRUSH.
By Lucy LARCOM.
There's a merry brown thrush sitting up in a tree;
"He's singing to me he's singing to me "
And what does he say, little girl, little boy?
Oh, the world's running over with joy !
Don't you hear? Don't you see?
Hush! look! In my tree
I'm as happy as happy can be "
And the brown thrush keeps singing, "A nest do you see
And five eggs hid by me in the juniper tree?
Don't meddle don't touch little girl, little boy,
Or the world will lose some of its joy!
Now I'm glad now I'm free !
And I always shall be,
If you never bring sorrow to me."
So the merry brown thrush sings away in the tree,
To you and to me, to you and to me;
And he sings all the day, little girl, little boy,
Oh, the world's running over with joy !
But long it won't be,
Don't you know? Don't you see?
Unless we're as good as can be."
THE YELLOW BIRD'S STORY.
I wonder if you children know how much
we prize our freedom.
Jack Frost came early in the season one
night last year, and when morning came I
was too stiff to fly very high.
Now my swamp is not far from the road;
so I hopped into it just as some children were
Oh," cried one, here is our lost canary;
let us take him to the house."
Oh, how they changed me about from one to
another, and how my heart did beat! Into a
house I was carried at last. A lady took me
up tenderly; but I was so anxious to get
away that I struggled out of her hand and
dashed my head against the hard wall.
The next I remember, I was in a prison
with wires all around me.
I was so unhappy, and tried to thrust
myself between the wires, but could not.
They frightened me, too, by thrusting water and
food into my prison, but I could touch
I know," said the lady at last, that you are
a little wild bird, and long for your own dear
home in the alder bushes."
With that, she took my prison away out in
the fields, where no children could see me,
opened the door, and away I darted over the
pastures and down into the swamp. You may
be sure I sang then as I never had sung before.
She was a trim little Maple tree, and had
stood by the pasture wall just two short years.
All summer long her leaves had been fresh
and green, and she had been on the very best
terms with the Sumach bush that stood near by.
But one September morning she awoke to
find her pretty green leaves turning to a most
gorgeous red and yellow.
How, beautiful! cried the children as they
ran by to school. "The very first of the
Now, the little Maple didn't know what the
" first of the season meant, but she did know
that the children had called her beautiful.
And because she was so very young she
began to grow vain. What a pity," she said
to the Sumach, "that your berries are not
richly colored like my leaves."
Perhaps they will be sometime," answered
O, no, they couldn't be," answered the
By and by, the Maple was surprised to find
her leaves beginning to fall; and in a few days,
she stood bare against the beautiful blue sky.
Then the Sumach berries began to grow rich
Was there ever such a lovely crimson!"
said the school children.
But all this time the Maple had said never a
word. O, what a silly thing I have been," she
thought to herself. I wonder every Sumach
bush in the pasture doesn't laugh at me." And
every bough and branch of the tree blushed in
the red sunset light to think how foolish she
THE BOY WHO HATED TREES.
By ALICE L. BECKWITH.
"Good-night! Dick. Remember now to wake
up with the robins so that you may be ready to
help me set out our new trees."
"Good night! answered Dick in a sulky
tone; for Dick was decidedly cross.
"Trees, trees, trees!" he mumbled to him-
self as he began to undress. I'm so sick of
hearing about trees. Miss Morrell has talked
'trees' for a week at school, and now father
has bought some old twigs to set out to-
morrow, and I wanted to go fishing.
I just wish I lived in a land where there
are no trees. We could get along well
enough without them;" and with this thought
he jumped into bed.
Perhaps Dick had been asleep an hour or
more, when he heard the queerest rustling
noise, and then a voice called out, Here he is
- the boy who hates trees!"
He sat bolt upright in bed, and there was
the strangest procession coming toward him.
It was made up of trees.
The Pine and the Elm came first, looking
statelier than ever. The Maple and the Oak
followed; and the Maple's leaves were flushed
scarlet, she was so excited. The Willow was
weeping, and the Poplar trembled all over, she
was so nervous.
Next came all the fruit trees, led by the
Cherry, while the Walnut, the White Birch, and
the Palm were behind.
What did it all mean ? Dick was frightened
for a moment. It seemed as if every tree he
had ever heard of was there, and he wondered
how the room could hold them all.
When they had all grown quiet the Pine
said, My dear brothers and sisters, here is a
boy who hates trees; he cannot see that we
are of any use. It is more than I can stand,
and I have called this meeting to see what can
be done about it. Has anyone anything to say?"
The Cherry looked very sour. I cannot
see that boys are of any use," she said. Many
years ago, when cherry trees were scarce in
this country, a boy named George cut down
my great-grandfather just to try his new
hatchet. It would be better if there were no
Yes," answered the White Birch, boys
know so little always hacking me with
knives, and taking off my coat, no matter how
cold the weather is!
"I loved a boy once, but it was many
years ago. He was a little Indian boy. He
loved trees. I remember how he stood beside
me one warm day and said:
'Give me of your bark, O Birch Tree!
For the summer-time is coming,
And the sun is warm in heaven,
And you need no white skin wrapper.
Then he took off my bark so carefully that he
did not hurt me a bit. But he is not living
now. This boy is not like him."
If it had not been for boys I should not be
so crooked," spoke up the Apple. "When I
was a child, boys used to lean on me and bend
me to the ground. My back was weak and it
hurt my spine.
One day a boy climbed up into my
branches and broke off one of my limbs. He
was a very silly boy, for he wanted green
apples. Had my fruit been ripe, I would have
tossed him down one. How happy we should
be if it were not for boys!"
The Maple was very indignant. This boy
here said we were of no use, but it was only
this morning that I heard him tease his
grandma for a cake of maple sugar."
He ate it as though he liked it too,"
answered the Palm. I saw him; he was
fanning himself with one of my leaves."
The Willow wiped her eyes. Boys, boys,
boys!" she said. I'm so sick of boys! This
same boy made a whistle out of one of my
children this very night when he went for the
Then a queer tree in the corner spoke in a
thick voice. "Ah, we are of no use are we?
If it were not for me, where would he get the
tires for his bicycle? There are his rubber
boots, too. Why, he uses me every day about
something; even on his fishing tackle you will
find me. But I've thought of a plan."
The trees crowded around him, talking very
excitedly. But how shall we do it ? he
heard them say.
Oh," said the Elm, the wind will help us;
she is always our friend."
Before Dick could cry out, he found himself
being wafted away by the wind.
"Where am I going?" he called.
"To the land of no trees," they answered;
and they bowed and smiled and clapped their
hands. Even the Willow held up her head
long enough to call, Good-by! good-by and
then home and trees were left far behind.
How fast the wind traveled! On and on
they went, until suddenly the wind dropped
him and went whistling away.
Dick felt really scared now, for he found
himself all alone.
Oh, I'm so hot! he exclaimed. I wonder
where I am." Certainly he had never been in
such a place before.
There were no trees or green grass any-
where in sight. As far as he could see there
was only sand ; white sand that was so hot and
"It seems to me I've seen pictures in the
geography like this," he said to himself. I
guess it must be a desert. Oh, I was never so
hot before. I can't sit here. What shall I
He thought of the willow trees on the wide
lawn at home. If he could only sit in their
cool shades for one little minute! He could
see the long shadows they threw on the grass
and hear the rustle of the wind in their tops.
If he were only there!
All at once he noticed a tiny speck far
away in the distance. Now it looked larger!
He brushed something away that looked
very much like a tear, though he told himself
that it was only because he was so warm.
Yes, it surely moved and was coming nearer.
What if it were a bear! "There is no tree
to climb, and I couldn't run, I am so tired and
it is so hot."
Nearer and nearer it came, moving so slowly.
Dick watched it with a beating heart. Now
he saw that it was not a single animal but a
great many in a line.
Oh, they are camels!" he cried. "Yes, I
know they are. I saw some once at a circus
that looked just like them, but what queer
looking men are on them!"
They were now very near him, and one of the
men beckoned with his hand and said some-
thing. I can't understand him," murmured
Dick, "but I guess he means he'll give me a
ride." The man helped him on to a camel and
they journeyed on. The day wore away and
Dick grew very tired.
"The camel joggles me so," he said, and I
am so thirsty I shall die. If they would only
stop a minute! What was the trouble?
What were they saying? Each man was
bowing himself towards the ground, waving
his hands and shouting.
I don't see what they are making all that
fuss about. I can't see anything, the sun hurts
my eyes so;" and Dick covered his eyes with
Suddenly there was a shout and the camels
stood still. Dick lifted his head. Could he
believe his eyes? Right before him was a
little spot of green grass, a spring of cool
water, and one of those things he hated--a
Hate a tree! He had never seen anything
so beautiful in all his lIfe. He fairly tumbled
off the camel in his haste to reach it.
The tears ran down his face as he threw his
arms around its trunk. Dear tree! he cried.
Dick, Dick, are you going to help me plant
the new trees ? called his father.
Opening his eyes Dick found himself in his
own little room, both hands clasping his
Dick was soon dressed and down stairs, and
so anxious was he to plant trees that he could
hardly eat his breakfast.
A week later Miss Morrell said to the
grammar school teacher, I think the trees we
planted on Arbor Day will grow if good care
has anything to do with it. Dick Hawkins
has appointed himself a committee of one
to look after all of them.
No one is allowed to lean against them -
hardly to touch them, and he looks at them
every night to see if they need water." Miss
Morrell did not know of Dick's trip.
And how in one night he learned to see
The wonderful beauty there is in a tree.
THE ORIOLE'S NEST.
By L. F' A.
Mr. and Mrs. Oriole had built a pretty nest
in the elm tree. It was skilfully woven, and
so fastened to the tip of a long branch that
the slightest breeze rocked it to and fro.
The tree was just across the street from a
What should we do without boys?" said
Mr. Oriole; he was then working on his
house, and was flying from the school-yard
with a piece of string in his bill. "They
always have strings in their pockets, and often
drop some of them."
And here is a pretty blue ribbon that I
found there," said his wife. It must have
once belonged to one of those dear little girls.
Hbw pretty it will look in our nest!"
The horse-hair woven into it came from the
horse owned by Joe's father, who lived near
"There couldn't be a prettier place for a
home," they said when all was completed.
"To be sure, the little girl, named Elsie, who
lives near here, has a cat that keeps watching
us. But our nest is out of her reach, I am
sure. She could never walk out to the end of
this slender branch."
The days passed by and the happy couple
enjoyed their home. The school children
often watched them. When the long summer
vacation came, the birds missed their happy
laughter; but when school began again, they
were glad to hear them at their play.
When the cold days came the birds flew
away. Nearly all winter the empty nest hung
there. But one stormy day it was blown
down. Eddie spied it as he was going home
and took it to his teacher.
She showed it to the children. "This is
the nest we have often seen," she said. See
how nicely it was made, and what a deep, safe
cradle for baby birds to swing in."
Why, that is the top-string that I lost,"
said Leonard. I know it by the button on
it." Sure enough, there it was, woven into
And I think that is my blue hair-ribbon,"
said Grace. "But I don't care if they did
take it; it makes their nest look so pretty."
The nest was hung up in the school-room.
The children enjoyed looking at it, for they
had contributed some of the material of which
it was built.
Day after day her nest she moulded,
Building with magic, love and mud,
A gray cup made by a thousand journeys,
And the tiny beak was trowel and hod.
JAKE AND THE WHEEL.
By ALICE L. BiEcKI'' tI.
I cannot tell which Sydney thought the more
of, his bicycle or Jake.
The bicycle he bought with his own money,
and Jake was a lovely gray squirrel which an
old Scotch gentleman gave him on his last
He had found him in the hollow of an old
oak tree while chopping in the woods one day;
and as winter was coming on, and the little
fellow might be cold, he carried him home to
Sydney taught him many tricks. He would
say, Jake, let me see you crack this nut," and
Jake would set up on his hind legs and hold
it in his paws and crack it with his teeth.
Then he would roll over, shake hands, and
do ever so many other things.
But there was nothing he loved so much as
to perch himself on Sydney's shoulder, with
Sydney on the wheel, and go skating through
the streets of the village like the wind.
How his little bead eyes would dance with
delight as he lay low on his master's shoulder,
his silky coat pressed smooth by the rushing
If Sydney rode slowly, then Jake would sit
upright with his long plumey tail curled up
in front of him, or he would change from
shoulder to shoulder, and sometimes would
skip down to the handle bars and ride there.
One morning in the spring, Sydney came
into the house and called "Jake!" No answer.
" Jake, Jake, you rascal! Grandma will scold
you if she finds you in her bonnet box. A
nice place to take a nap! Do you want to
take a ride?"
Jake was wide awake in an instant and,
jumping out of the box, ran out of the door
and seated himself on the wheel, as much as
to say, If you please." Sydney laughed
heartily and off they started. A fine time
they had until the middle of a hill was
reached, when Sydney took a "header." He
was not hurt a bit, but when he scrambled
to his feet Jake was nowhere to be found.
Up and down the street Sydney looked,
whistling and calling, but no squirrel appeared.
Then he looked up in the trees nearby, down
in the gutter, and finally went down a side
street and got Bob Jones to join in the search.
It was the strangest thing, how he could have
disappeared so suddenly!
For nearly an hour they searched, several
other boys joining in the quest, but it was of
no use, and Sydney at last rode sadly home.
A happy thought came! Perhaps he would
find him at the house; but neither mamma
nor sister Flora had seen anything of him.
He must have gone back to the woods,"
said Sydney in a husky voice, as he plunged
his hand into his pocket for his handkerchief.
How he jumped as he touched something
soft and furry, and then- dear me!-Jake
sprang right out of the pocket on to the table,
and sat there blinking his funny little eyes, as
much as to say, What in the world is all
this fuss about? Such a header as that,
Master Sydney, was too much for me. I
jumped into your pocket and it has taken
me all this time to get over that tumble."
EDITH'S CHOICE OF FLOWERS.
By M. L. P.
Edith's home had been made very beautiful,
for Edith's mamma was going to give a party.
There were great red roses in the drawing
rooms, there were tall white lilies in the halls,
and real smilax up and down the staircase.
All these had been sent out from the city for
Edith's mamma's party.
Oh dear!" said Mamma. "There aren't
half flowers enough. Just see how bare the
blue room looks !"
I'll get you some flowers," said Edith; and
away she ran with a basket out into the big
Here they are! called Edith; and in she
ran, basket and apron full of big white daisies,
and golden buttercups.
Mamma and papa looked at each other.
They didn't like to hurt the little girl's feelings
when she had tried to help; so they took the
daisies and buttercups and decorated the blue
room with them.
I don't know what rich Mrs. Van Dyke
will think," whispered mamma to papa. Or
Mrs. King-or Mrs. Le Baron. We shall
have to tell them it was to please Edith."
And what do you suppose these rich ladies
said? They said it was the sweetest room in
the whole house. And Mrs. Van Dyke-the
tears came in her eyes when she saw all the
daisies and buttercups. She said they reminded
her of the time when she was a little girl; and
that to her these simple wild flowers were
lovelier than all the hot house flowers in the
"We will let Edith choose all the flowers
for the next party," said papa.
BIRDS IN SUMMER.
By MARY IIowITr.
How pleasant the life of a bird must be,
Flitting about in each leafy tree;
In the leafy trees so broad and tall,
Like a green and beautiful palace hall,
With its airy chambers, light and boon,
That open to sun, and stars, and moon;
That open unto the bright blue sky,
And the frolicsome winds as they wander by!
They have left their nests in the forest bough;
Those homes of delight they-need not now;
And the young and old they wander out,
And traverse the green world round about;
And hark at the top of this leafy hall.
How, one to another, they lovingly call!
" Come up, come up they seem to say,
"Where the topmost twigs in the breezes play "
" Come up, come up, for the world is fail
Where the merry leaves dance in the summer air!"
And the birds below give back the cry,
" We come, we come to the branches high "
How pleasant the life of the birds must be,
Living above in a leafy tree!
And away through the air what joy to go,
And to look on the green, bright earth below!
How pleasant the life of a bird must be,
Skimming about on the breezy sea,
Cresting the billows like silvery foam,
And then wheeling away to its cliff-built home!
What joy it must be to sail, upborne,
By a strong free wing, through the rosy morn,
To meet the young sun, face to face,
And pierce, like a shaft, the boundless space!
How pleasant the life of a bird must be,
Wherever it listeth, there to flee;
To go, when a joyful fancy calls,
Dashing down, amongg the waterfalls;
Then wheeling about, with its mate at play,
Above and below, and among the spray,
Hither and thither, with screams as wild
As the laughing mirth of a rosy child !
What joy it must be, like a living breeze,
To flutter among the flowering trees;
Lightly to soar, and to see beneath,
The wastes of the blossoming purple heath,
And the yellow furze, like fields of gold,
That gladden some fairy region old!
On mountain tops, on billowy sea,
On the leafy stems of the forest tree,
How pleasant the life of a bird must be!
He prayeth best who loveth best
Both man and bird and beast."
BIRDS OF THE AIR.
Some birds love to gather breakfasts while
flying about in the air. All the swallows,
those who build far up among the cobwebbed
rafters of the barn (barn swallows), in the
wide chimneys of the farmhouses, (chimney
swallows), in the trunks of the trees, under
the eaves of buildings or the cliffs or rocks,
have this habit, and are called, Birds of the
air." The martins and peewees belong to
this class too; and that slender, delicate little
fellow, the humming bird, he prefers honey
to insects. But, I do not blame him, do
Farmer Gruff one day declared that he would
not allow the swallows in his barn. His little
daughter pleaded hard for them, but in vain;
every nest was torn down, the birds driven
out, and the boys ordered to shoot every one
The swallows, frightened and grieving for
their lost homes, flew away to find new
I suppose the robins and sparrows must
have been frightened, too, by the noise of
the gun, or, perhaps, the swallows told them
something about matters; at any rate, I know
that hardly a bird was to be seen about the
place for many weeks.
Now this same farmer had a lot set out to
fine fruit trees. May had been among them
and decked them all out in pink and white,
promises of delicious pears and peaches; but
one day in August, Farmer Gruff came into
the house with a long face.
"Wife," said he, "there ain't a whole leaf
in the nursery and the fruit is all, dropping off;
I shan't get a cent from those trees this year! "
Foolish man!" twittered all the swallows;
"he might have had a fine crop had he allowed
us to stay. 'Twas the insects that did the mis-
chief; we would have gathered them all up and
eaten them as they climbed the trees, while
the robins and other birds would have pecked
off the grubs and worms from the leaves."
But the swallows all agreed that they were
not very sorry for him ; are you?
THE WILLOW TREE.
Elsie lived away out in the country. She
had to walk a whole long mile to reach a house.
So it happened that Elsie had no little boys
and girls to play with.
Indeed, she seldom saw any, except on
Sunday when her papa took her to the village
Are you not lonesome all the week ? the
little girls would say to her sometimes.
O, no," Elsie would say. You see I have
my Willow tree."
What do you suppose Elsie meant ?
Well, she meant this: In front of her home
stood a big Willow tree.
It was the very first tree on the farm to turn
yellowish in the spring.
Then, by and by, when the warm spring days
came, Elsie could make baskets from the
Willow branches. She had made a nice one
for her mother's clothes-pins.
She could make lovely whistles from the
Willow, too; and sometimes she called her
father up from the meadow to his dinner with
The Willow trunk is very low; so Elsie could
climb it easily, and up in the branches she had
a little seat where she could sit and read.
There was a swing, too, on one of the biggest
boughs; and birds' nests in the highest ones.
Do you see now why Elsie was not lonesome
while she had her Willow tree?
THE LITTLE SPRUCE.
You wouldn't think anything so beautiful as
a Spruce tree would fret, would you ?
But it did one day; and for such a foolish
You see, the trees all about were playing
great capers with the autumn wind, and were
throwing their leaves at him. And, such a
time as they were having, racing across the
fields and up and down the roads.
The little Spruce tried to throw her leaves,
too; but alas, not one of them would shake
itself from the branches.
And so the foolish little Spruce fretted. I
don't know why I should have to keep my
leaves on all winter," it said.
One day two ladies came. Oh, here is just
the tree," said one of them; and down they both
sat beside the Spruce.
They had with them a pretty bag, in which
were wrought in red floss the letters, Sweet
One lady held the bag open; and the other
lady- what do you think? She took the little
tree, branch by branch, and scaled every tiny
needle from it.
And was the little Spruce glad to find itself
leafless? Certainly it ought to have been,
after fretting and longing to be like other trees;
but, strange to say, it was not.
THE HORSE CHESTNUTS.
Willis had his pockets full of beautiful
brown Horse Chestnuts. Where did you get
them ?" asked his little brother Fred.
Why, they grew up in the big Horse
Chestnut tree," answered Willis.
Then Fred ran down to the old tree at the
foot of the lane and looked up into the big
It was such a sweet, round little face, and it
was so very earnest, the soft green burrs
among the trees could not help smiling down at
I don't see any brown Horse Chestnuts up
in the tree," said Fred to himself. Willis
was fooling me. I think they grow on the
This was too funny-so the Horse Chestnuts
thought; and they shook and shook until they
burst themselves laughing, as boys and girls
sometimes say. And the oddest of it all was,
that just then down came a whole shower of
the loveliest Horse Chestnuts about Fred's
You were hiding up there, I believe," he
said, as he filled his pockets full.
OUT FOR A FROLIC.
I'm out for a frolic, little trees," laughed the
bold March Wind. So, look out! look out!
I may like to push you over just for fun; or
tear you up by the roots, as I did a big Oak on
the river bank last night."
Frolic as you please," said the little
Birches; we know you will not harm us."
Let's see who is the strongest," laughed the
Wind. And he ran up into a hilltop, took a
long, deep breath, then, with a great cry, rushed
down the hillside across the plain, straight into
the little group of Birches.
The little Birches bent low, every one, as the
wind bore down upon them.
There, little Birches," laughed the Wind.
"You see I could bear you down to the earth
and break you every one." But just then the
Wind turned back; when lo! every Birch stood
as erect and firm as ever.
That is very strange," whistled the Wind.
"Are those Birches stronger than that great
Oak? I do not understand." And away he
hurried down the valley, for he thought he saw
the Birches laughing at him.
By ANNIE CHASE.
Mr. Chipmunk found some acorns
In the wall. Ho ho! said he,
"I'll not tell my little wife,
She does eat so greedily."
So he took them from his pockets,
Hid them safely in the dark;
Then sat a moment, blinking,
On a bit of fallen bark.
Mr. Chipmunk came to dinner
Next day without his wife;
Cried, Now where are those acorns?
I can't think, to save my life "
Then the little acorns laughed
Till they split their sides with glee;
"Ha! ha! he'll never find us,
We shall each become a tree."
AN UMBRELLA NEST.
By M. L. P.
Dear, dear! is it not. rather warm for this
time of the year?" said a little Bird to her
I think it is," said the other Bird, and
I'm really afraid these tiny eggs of ours will
get a sunstroke."
What can we do!" thought Mother Bird.
" I am so worried for our little ones. It is
nearly time for them to peep out of these
shells. I am watching every day!"
Father Bird blinked his wise little eyes, and
looked down anxiously at the little eggs.
I have noticed," said he, "that men and
women who walk always on the ground carry
umbrellas when the sun is very warm."
And I have noticed that they draw down
awnings over the windows of their houses,"
added Mother Bird.
Just the thing! cried Father Bird. "We
will do that, too!"
And he set at once to work, pulling down
the little bough above the nest, and fastening
the leaves to the edges of it.
How cool and nice!" fluttered Mother
Bird; now the eggs 'are sheltered from the
sun, and I am sure we shall have a fine brood
of little ones in a day or two.
A BIRD KITE.
The postman whistled, and the little brown
sparrow up in the tree flew down to watch.
Was the sparrow expecting a letter? No,
not quite that; but it had made a discovery,
and so watched every day for the blue-coated
You see, it was like this: Mr. Postman
always tied his letters up in packages. There
was one for each street on his route. Around
these packages he tied a strong hemp string.
Now, our wise little sparrow had learned
that each morning when the postman came
around the corner, he untied a bundle of
letters. Then he threw away the string.
"Just the kind of string I like!" said Birdie
- for you see Birdie was building a nest for
himself. That was why he was looking for
I can bind my nest firmly to the bough of
the tree with that string," he said.
So down he flew, picked up the postman's
string, and away he went- up, up, up, into the
big elm tree.
It was a very windy day, and the string was
It blew away out behind the little bird like
a long kite tail.
0 see! cried Ethel. See the little kite!
a bird kite!" and she watched the little
sparrow till he had flown in among the
branches of the trees,
THE O'LINCOLN FAMILY.
By WILSON FLAGG.
A flock of merry singing-birds were sporting in the grove;
Some were warbling cheerily, and some were making love;
There were Bobolincon, Wadolincon, Winterseeble, Con-
A livelier set was never led by tabor, pipe, or fiddle -
Crying, "-Phew, shew, Wadolincon, see, see, Bobolincon,
Down among the tickletops, hiding in the buttercups!
I know the saucy chap; I see his shining cap
Bobbing in the clover there- see, see, see! "
Up flies Bobolincon, perching on an apple-tree,
Startled by his rival's song, quickened by his raillery.
Soon he spies the rogue afloat, curveting in the air,
And merrily he turns about, and warns him to beware!
" 'Tis you that would a-wooing go, down among the rushes !
But wait a week, till flowers are cheery -wait a week,
and ere you marry,
Be sure of a house wherein to tarry!
Wadolink, Whiskodink, Tom Denny, wait, wait, wait!"
Every one's a funny fellow; every one's a little mellow;
Follow, follow, follow, follow, o'er the hill and in the hollow
Merrily, merrily, there they hie; now they rise and now
They cross and turn, and in and out, and down in the
middle, and wheel about-
With a Phew, shew, Wadolincon! listen to me, Bobo-
Happy's the wooing that's speedily doing, that's speedily
That's merry and over with the bloom of the clover.
Bobolincon, Wadolincon, Winterseeble, follow, follow me!"
A CATERPILLAR STORY.
"Dear me! dear me!" said Mrs. Green
Caterpillar to young Mrs. Brown Caterpillar.
" What a strange noise! It is quite alarming! "
Mrs. Green Caterpillar was all of a tremble
as she stood almost upright on the slender
branch of a maple-tree.
Mrs. Brown Caterpillar was far below on a
Do not worry, my dear Mrs. Green Cater-
pillar; nothing can possibly harm you in that
dress, for you look so very like a leaf that I
need to strain my eyes to find you."
It is different with me. These bright red
spots are so attractive," said Mrs. Brown
"Caw! caw! caw! came sharply just
over their heads, and a large, black bird swept
down to a swaying twig not far from Mrs.
Green Caterpillar's hiding-place.
Just as Mr. Crow had been about to venture
into the field, he spied pretty little Mrs.
Green Caterpillar, who was doing her best to
hide beneath a twig.
Mr. Crow decided at once that the fat little
lady would make a dainty meal. So he hopped
along on the twig.
Mrs. Green Caterpillar's eyes were very
bright. Indeed, she had so many eyes that
it would have been strange had she not seen
Mr. Crow; but just at the very moment that
his sharp bill was open to eat her, she dropped
to the ground with a dull little thud.
A burdock leaf hid her from Mr. Crow, who
flew away with a spiteful little "caw! caw! caw!"
By and by Mrs. Brown Caterpillar began to
feel very sleepy. But she had a strange
feeling that she ought to keep awake. Aside
from their one great delight of trimming the
leaves neatly, and eating the softer parts so
nicely that there were no crumbs left, the lady
caterpillars could spin.
They were wonderful spinners
indeed, but each in an entirely
different way. Mrs. Brown Caterpillar made a
dainty lining in a queer little basket, which
looked all the world like a little shell.
It was slender and tapered at each end.
When the basket was finished, Mrs. Brown
Caterpillar went to sleep inside.
Mrs. Green Caterpillar wove about her
plump body the most delicate silken threads,
until she looked like a caterpillar bride in a
dainty bridal veil. Within this pretty silken
network, called a cocoon, she too went to sleep.
Mrs. Brown Caterpillar's winter home was
under the top board of the fence, and all
winter long the branch rocked the little cradle
in the tree-top.
Mrs. Green Caterpillar was not troubled by
frosts and cold winds. She did not waken
until the March winds had long ceased and the
June days were at hand.
One rare June day a beautiful brown moth
crept slowly out of the brown silken cocoon.
On the same day a gorgeous black-and-gold
butterfly came from the slender twig-trimmed
cradle. The brown moth fluttered to the ground
not far from the black-and-gold butterfly.
"Why, how do you do?" said the moth.
" Don't you remember me? I was Mrs. Green
Caterpillar but yesterday. I have changed my
dress. How sleepy I was "
Yesterday, yesterday!" piped a sly little
wren. "Why, you silly insects, you went to
sleep last summer, and this is spring."
Well, well, well! said the moth and the
butterfly in one breath.
But see! said the butterfly with a flutter
of her wings toward a milkweed leaf. There
were dozens of little round, white eggs on the
Oh, I have some eggs too, up there in the
tree," said the moth. "How delightful it will be
when the baby moths and butterflies come out!"
"Ha-ha ha, ha-ha ha!" laughed the wren.
"Do you suppose your eggs will hatch out
into baby moths and butterflies? No, indeed,
Mrs. Moth. No, indeed, Mrs. Butterfly."
But the butterfly was dancing away across
the fields of clover. Mrs. Moth, too, disap-
peared. She did not see that her round, white
little eggs became hungry little caterpillars,
which began to eat and grow as rapidly as
Mrs. Brown Caterpillar and Mrs.Green Cater-
pillar had done.
It had been a wonderful year for the Maple
leaves. They could remember nothing like it.
First, there had been the spring festival,
when all the first flowers had met together
after their long winter sleep beneath the snow.
The Snowdrop had told the Violet and the
Saxifrage, the Anemone and the Hepatica all
about that snow; for, you see, she had pushed
her head up through the white covering and
had seen it herself.
The tiny Maple leaves had listened to the
Snowdrop's story, and had tried to think how
fine the fields and hills must have looked all
white and shining.
By and by came the June festival; then the
Daisies and the Buttercups and the Dandelions
had made the fields gorgeous.
This was a greater festival than the first, so
the Maple leaves thought, because there were
so many flower people present.
Later still, came an August festival. If the
Maple leaves had thought the June festival a
great affair, what did they think now?
For, dear me! the fields were a hundred
times more gorgeous than ever! Red and
gold were everywhere.
In the fields, the Golden-rod; among the
grasses, the Yellow Arnica; along the rivers,
the burning Cardinal.
In the gardens the Salvia, the Marigolds, the
Dahlias; and everywhere the blue Chicory, the
pink Hardhack, the purple Aster, the Meadow
Sweet and the Clematis.
Now, never before, in all the year, had the
Maple leaves wished to change places with the
They liked their home away up in the branches
where the breezes blow.
But when the August festival came, they
began to grow restless. "Our leaves are
getting old and dry," said one branch.
We have lost that delicate green we had in
the spring," said another.