short stories Archive

SISTER HEN AND THE CROCODILE HE Crocodile is one of the hungriest bodies that ever lived. When he is looking for a dinner he will eat almost anything that comes within reach. Sometimes the greedy fellow swallows great stones and chunks of wood, in his hurry mistaking them for something more digestible. And when he is smacking his great jaws over his food he makes such a greedy, terrible noise that the other animals steal away nervously and hide until it shall be Master Crocodile’s sleepy-time. He is too lazy to waddle in search of a dinner far from the river where he lives. But any animal or even a man-swimmer had best be careful how he ventures into the water near the Crocodile’s haunts. [&hellip

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THE FOWLS ON PILGRIMAGE NCE upon a time old Lady Fox was very hungry, but she had nothing to eat, and there was no sign of a dinner to be had anywhere. “What shall I do, what shall I do?” whined the Fox. “I am so faint and hungry, but all the birds and all the fowls are afraid of me and will not venture near enough for me to consult them about a dinner. I have so bad a name that no one will trust me. What can I do to win back the respect of the community and earn a square meal? Ah, I have it! I will turn pious and go upon a pilgrimage. That ought to make me popular once more.” [&hellip

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THE DOVE WHO SPOKE TRUTH HE Dove and the wrinkled little Bat once went on a journey together. When it came towards night a storm arose, and the two companions sought everywhere for a shelter. But all the birds were sound asleep in their nests and the animals in their holes and dens. They could find no welcome anywhere until they came to the hollow tree where old Master Owl lived, wide awake in the dark. “Let us knock here,” said the shrewd Bat, “I know the old fellow is not asleep. This is his prowling hour, and but that it is a stormy night he would be abroad hunting.—What ho, Master Owl!” he squeaked, “will you let in two storm-tossed travelers for a night’s [&hellip

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HOW THE BLACKBIRD SPOILED HIS COAT NCE upon a time, our friend Blackbird, who comes first of the feathered brothers in the spring, was not black at all. No, indeed; he was white—white as feather-snow new fallen in the meadow. There are very few birds who have been thought worthy to dress all in beautiful white, for that is the greatest honor which a bird can have. So, like the Swan and the Dove, Master Whitebird—for that is what they called him then—was very proud of his spotless coat. He was very proud and happy, and he sang all day long, the jolliest songs. But you see he did not really deserve this honor, because he was at heart a greedy bird; and therefore a [&hellip

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THE INQUISITIVE WOMAN HERE was once a woman who was so very inquisitive that she wished to know everything. She was never happy unless she was poking her nose into some mystery, and the less a matter concerned her the more curious she was about it. One day the Lord gathered together all the insects in the world, all the beetles, bugs, bees, mosquitoes, ants, locusts, grasshoppers, and other creatures who fly or hop or crawl, and shut them up in a huge sack well tied at the end. What a queer, squirming, muffled-buzzing bundle it made, to be sure! Then the Lord called the woman to him and said, “Woman, I would have you take this sack and throw it into the sea. But [&hellip

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THE ROBIN WHO WAS AN INDIAN HE name of Robin makes us think at once of the jolliest and most sociable of all our little brother birds. In every land the name is a favorite, and wherever he goes he brings happiness and kind feeling. The American Robin is not the same bird as his English cousin, though both have red breasts. It was in a different manner that our little American friend came to have the ruddy waistcoat which we know so well. There was a time, so the Indians say, a very early time, long, long before Columbus discovered America,—even before histories began to be written,—when there were no Robins. In those days in the land of the Ojibways, which is far in [&hellip

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