Jane L. Hoxie.

A Kindergarten Story Book online

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"Oh, Drake Lake!"

"Who told you, Drake Lake?"

"Oh, Duck Luck!"

"Who told you, Duck Luck?"

"Oh, Cock Lock!"

"Who told you, Cock Lock?"

"Oh, Hen Ren!"

"Who told you, Hen Ren?"

"Oh, Chicker Ricker!"

"Who told you, Chicker Ricker?"

"Oh, Fox Lox!"

"Who told you, Fox Lox?"

"Oh, I heard it and I felt it and it came thump upon my crown! Run
down hill with me where you will be quite safe," said Fox Lox.

"That I will!" cried Dove Love.

So they ran and they ran and they ran; and when Chicker Ricker and Hen
Ren and Cock Lock and Duck Luck and Drake Lake and Goose Loose and
Gander Lander and Turk Lurk and Dove Love reached the bottom of the
hill, they were going so fast that they could not stop and they ran
straight into Fox Lox's hole.

"Now I have you! Now I have you!" cried Fox Lox. And he gobbled them
all up.




THE WEE, WEE WOMAN.

Once upon a time there was a wee, wee woman who lived all alone in a
wee, wee house.

One night this wee, wee woman lighted her wee, wee candle, crept softly
up her wee, wee stairs, got into her wee, wee bed, and fell fast
asleep. Soon this wee, wee woman was awakened by a noise. She jumped
out of her wee, wee bed, lighted her wee, wee candle and looked behind
her wee, wee door, but there was nothing there. Then she looked under
her wee, wee bed, but there was nothing there.

So this wee, wee woman took her wee, wee candle in her wee, wee hand,
crept softly down her wee, wee stairs and, when she reached the room
below, she looked under her wee, wee chair, but there was nothing
there. Then she looked into her wee, wee cupboard, but there was
nothing there. Then she looked behind her wee, wee stove, but there
was nothing there. Then she looked under her wee, wee table, but there
was nothing there.

So this wee, wee woman took her wee, wee candle in her wee, wee hand,
crept softly up her wee, wee stairs, got into her wee, wee bed and fell
fast asleep. Soon this wee, wee woman was awakened by a noise. She
jumped out of her wee, wee bed, lighted her wee, wee candle and looked
behind, her wee, wee door, but there was nothing there. Then she
looked under her wee, wee bed, but there was nothing there.

So this wee, wee woman took her wee, wee candle in her wee, wee hand,
crept softly down her wee, wee stairs, and, when she reached the room
below, she looked under her wee, wee chair, but there was nothing
there. Then she looked into her wee, wee cupboard, but there was
nothing there. Then she looked behind her wee, wee stove, but there
was nothing there. Then she looked under her wee, wee table, but there
was nothing there.

So this wee, wee woman took her wee, wee candle in her wee, wee hand,
crept softly up her wee, wee stairs, got into her wee, wee bed and fell
fast asleep. Soon this wee, wee woman was awakened by a noise. She
jumped out of her wee, wee bed, lighted her wee, wee candle and looked
behind her wee, wee door, but there was nothing there. Then she looked
under her wee, wee bed, but there was nothing there.

So this wee, wee woman took her wee, wee candle in her wee, wee hand,
crept softly down her wee, wee stairs, and, when she reached the room
below, she looked under her wee, wee chair, but there was nothing
there. Then she looked into her wee, wee cupboard, but there was
nothing there. Then she looked behind her wee, wee stove, but there
was nothing there. Then she looked under her wee, wee table and out
jumped - BOO!!!




THE LITTLE LONG TAIL.

As a cat and a mouse ran over a rail
The cat bit off the mouse's tail.

The little mouse cried, "Cat, Cat, give back my little long tail again!"

"That I will if you'll give me milk!" said Cat.

The little mouse ran to Cow and cried, "Cow, Cow, give me milk, that I
may give Cat milk, that Cat may give back my little long tail again!"

"That I will if you'll give me hay!" said Cow.

The little mouse ran to Barn and cried, "Barn, Barn, give me hay, that
I may give Cow hay, that Cow may give me milk, that I may give Cat
milk, that Cat may give back my little long tail again!"

"That I will if you'll give me key!" said Barn.

The little mouse ran to Smith and cried, "Smith, Smith, give me key,
that I may give Barn key, that Barn may give me hay, that I may give
Cow hay, that Cow may give me milk, that I may give Cat milk, that Cat
may give back my little long tail again!"

"That I will if you'll give me coal!" said Smith.

The little mouse ran to Miner and cried, "Miner, Miner, give me coal,
that I may give Smith coal, that Smith may give me key, that I may give
Barn key, that Barn may give me hay, that I may give Cow hay, that Cow
may give me milk, that I may give Cat milk, that Cat may give back my
little long tail again!"

"That I will!" cried Miner, and he gave the mouse coal. The mouse gave
Smith coal and Smith gave him key. The mouse gave Barn key and Barn
gave him hay. The mouse gave Cow hay and Cow gave him milk. The mouse
gave Cat milk and Cat gave back his little long tail again.




THE BROWNIES.

ADAPTED FROM MRS. EWING.

Such wonderful stories as grandmother told Johnnie and Tommy! Stories
of ghosts and hob-goblins, of dwarfs and fairies; and once she told
them about a brownie that was said to have lived in their own family,
long ago, - a brownie who did all manner of wonderful and useful things.
He was a little fellow no larger than Tommy, she said, but very active
and very shy. He slept by the kitchen fire, and no one ever saw him;
but, early in the morning, when all the family were in their beds, this
brownie would get up, sweep the room, build the fire, spread the table,
milk the cow, churn the cream, bring the water, scrub and dust, until
there was not a speck of dirt anywhere to be seen.

The children liked this story very much, and oh! how they did wish such
a brownie would come to live in their house now! Over and over again
they said: "Was there really and truly a brownie, grandmother, and did
he really help all the people as you say? How we wish he would come
back again! Why, he could mind the baby and tidy the room and bring in
the wood and wait on you, grandmother! Can't we do something to get
him back again?"

"I don't know, my dears," said the grandmother; "but they used to say,
in my young days, that if one set a bowl of bread and milk or even a
pan of clear water for him over night he would be sure to come, and
would do all the work just for that."

"Oh! let us try it!" said both the boys; and one ran to get a pan, and
the other to fetch fresh water from the well, for they knew, poor
hungry lads, that there was no bread or milk in the house. Their
father, who was a poor tailor, could scarcely earn money enough to buy
food for them all. His wife had died when the baby was born and he
could not make as many coats as before, for he must now do all the work
of the house. Johnnie and Tommy were idle and lazy and too thoughtless
to help their father, although they were fine grown lads of five and
seven.

One night Tommy had a wonderful dream. He thought he went down in the
meadow by the old mill pond, and there he saw an owl who shook her
feathers, rolled her great eyes, and called: "Tuwhit, tuwhoo! Tuwhoo,
whoo-o-o-o! Tommy, what are you doing way down here this time of
night?"

"Please, I came to find the brownies," said Tommy; "can you tell me
where they live, ma'am?"

"Tuwhoo, tuwhoo!" screamed the old owl; "so it's the brownies you are
after, is it? Tuwhoo, tuwhoo! Go look in the mill pond. Tuwhoo,
tuwhoo! Go look in the water at midnight, and you'll see one. By the
light of the moon a brownie you'll see, to be sure, but such a lazy
one! Tuwhoo, tuwhoo!" screamed the old owl; and, flapping her wings,
she went sailing away in the moonlight.

"The mill pond, at midnight, by moonlight," thought Tommy. What could
the old owl mean? It was midnight then, and moonlight, too; and there
he was right down by the water. "Silly old thing," said Tommy,
"brownies don't live in the water." But for all that Tommy went to the
bank and peeped in. The moon was shining as bright as day; and what do
you suppose he saw? Why, just a picture of himself in the water, and
that was all. "Humph! I'm no brownie," said he to himself; but the
longer he looked the harder he thought. At last he said:

"Am I a brownie? Perhaps I am one, after all. Grandmother said they
are about as large as I, and the old owl said that I would see a very
lazy one if I looked in the water. Am I lazy? That must be what she
meant. I am the brownie myself." The longer he thought about it the
surer he was that he must be a brownie. "Why," he said, "if I am one,
Johnnie must be another; then there are two of us. I'll go home and
tell Johnnie all about it."

Off he ran as fast as his legs could carry him, and just as he was
calling, "Johnnie, Johnnie! We are brownies! The old owl told me!" he
found himself wide awake, sitting up in bed, rubbing his eyes, while
Johnnie lay fast asleep by his side. The first faint rays of morning
light were just creeping in at their chamber window. "Johnnie,
Johnnie, wake up! I have something to tell you!"

After telling his brother all about his strange dream, Tommy said: "Let
us play we really are brownies, John, even if we are not; it will be
such fun for once to surprise father and grandmother. We will keep out
of sight and tell about it afterwards. Oh, do come! It will be such
fun!"

So these two brownies put on their clothes in a great hurry and crept
softly down to the kitchen, where at first there seemed enough work for
a dozen brownies to do. Tommy built up a blazing fire, and, while the
kettle was boiling, swept the untidy floor, while Johnnie dusted,
placed his grandmother's chair, got the cradle ready for the baby and
spread the table. Just as everything was in order they heard their
father's footstep on the stairs. "Run!" whispered Tommy, "or he will
see us." So the boys scampered away to their bed in the loft and
pretended to be fast asleep when their father called them to breakfast.

The poor tailor was fairly beside himself with delight and
astonishment, and believed that the brownie he had heard so much about
in his childhood had really come back again. The old grandmother was
delighted, too, and said: "What did I tell you, son Thomas? I always
knew there were real brownies."

Although being brownies was fun for the boys, it was hard work, too,
and they sometimes thought they would leave off; but then they would
think of their hard-working father and would grow quite ashamed.
Things were so much better at home than they used to be. The tailor
never scolded now, the grandmother was more cheerful than of old, the
baby was less fretful, the house was always tidy; and because the
tailor had more time for his work, now that the brownies helped, he
could make more coats and could get more money, and the boys did not go
hungry to bed as they used to do; but there was always bread and milk
enough, and a great bowlful to spare that they set each night for the
brownie.

At last the tailor said, "I am going to do something for that brownie.
He has done so much for us all." So he cut and stitched the neatest
little coat you ever saw; for he said: "I have always heard that a
brownie's clothes are ragged, so our brownie will need this, I know."
When the coat was done it just fitted Tommy and was very fine to see,
all stitched with gold thread and covered with brave brass buttons.

That night the little coat was placed by the bowl of milk set for the
brownie and, when the early morning came, the tailor was awakened by
the sound of laughter and scuffling in the kitchen. "It's the
brownie," thought he; and getting out of bed he crept softly down the
stairs.

But when he reached the kitchen, instead of the brownie, he saw Johnnie
and Tommy sweeping and making the fire and dusting and setting the
table. Tommy had put on the coat that the tailor had made for the
brownie, and was skipping about in it laughing and calling to Johnnie
to see how fine he looked, but saying: "I wish he had made it to fit
you, John."

"Boys, what does all this mean?" cried the tailor. "Tommy, why have
you put on that coat?"

When the boys saw their father they ran to him and tried to tell him
all about it. "There is no brownie, father," they cried, "but we have
done the work. And O father! we are sorry that we were lazy and idle
so long; but we mean to be brownies now, real brownies, and help you
till we grow to be big men." The poor tailor was so happy that he knew
not what to say, and there were tears in his eyes as he kissed each
little son.

Tommy and Johnnie kept their promise and continued being brownies until
they went away to homes of their own. But their little sister grew to
be the best brownie of all; and she kept her father's house so bright
and clean with mop and brush and broom and dustpan that not a speck of
dirt was anywhere to be seen.




THE FAIRY SHOES.

ADAPTED FROM MRS. EWING.

Once upon a time a baby boy was born in a little brown house, far away
in a country village, and everybody was invited to his christening and
everybody was glad to come.

Now the baby's mother had a fairy godmother of whom she was very fond.
This fairy was rich and all the people said, "Surely she will bring a
present to the baby on his christening-day, that is worth a great deal
of money." But, at last when the time came, what do you suppose she
really brought? - a pair of stout little leather shoes with copper toes.

In spite of the disappointment at the fairy's present the festivities
went merrily on and, when the party was over and the fairy bade her
god-daughter good-bye, she said: "My little present is not quite as
shabby as it looks. Those shoes will never wear out and, besides, the
little feet that have them on can never go wrong. When your baby has
grown large enough to wear those shoes, if you send him on an errand,
and tell him to come back quickly, and he forgets and stops to play,
those little shoes will help him to remember by pinching his feet and
pulling and twitching at his ankles until he will be glad to go on
again. They will remind him to go straight to school and to come
straight home again as you have bidden him. Indeed, wherever he is
sent he will be quite sure to go, and he will come back again at just
the right moment and, by the time his feet have grown too large to wear
the little shoes, he will no longer need their help."

Days passed by, months passed by. The boy was no longer a baby, but
had grown large enough to wear the fairy's shoes and, just as she had
said, they always helped him to go the right way.

Months sped and years sped and another baby boy came to stay in the
little brown house, and then another and another and another, until the
mother had nine boys. Each one in turn wore the little shoes and, just
as the fairy had said, they never wore out. At last they descended to
the ninth and youngest boy and became Timothy's shoes.

Now the eighth little boy had rather small feet and had worn the shoes
longer than the others, besides Timothy was the baby and, for one
reason and another like these, his mother hated to put the rough little
shoes upon him. For a long time Timothy had gone his own way, which
was rarely the right way. At last he played truant from school so
often and was late to dinner so many times, that his mother said she
could bear it no longer, he must wear the fairy shoes. So she had them
freshly blackened and the copper tips newly polished and, one morning,
she brought them out and told Timothy to put them on.

"Now, Tim dear," she said, "go straight to school this morning. If you
don't these little shoes will pinch your feet terribly."

But Timothy did not mind. It was a bright, sunny morning in May and,
if he had loitered on the way when the cold March winds blew up his
jacket sleeves and made him shiver, and when the snow lay in great
drifts by the roadside, how could he help wishing to linger now when
every bush held a bird and every bank a flower?

Once or twice Timothy stopped to pick spring flowers, but the shoes
pinched his feet and he ran on again. At last he reached the bank
overlooking the swamp and, gazing down, he saw great clumps of
cowslips, with their dark green leaves and crowns of beautiful yellow
flowers.

Then Timothy forgot all about school, forgot what his mother had said,
forgot the shoes and their pinches and thought only of the cowslips.
Oh, he must have some!

In a moment away went his satchel on the grass and away went the
flowers he had picked and he began scrambling down the bank toward the
swamp as fast as he could go. But the little shoes, they meant to go
another way. They meant to go to school and they pinched Timothy's
feet and pulled and twitched at his ankles, trying to make him turn
about and go in the right way, until he thought his feet would be
wrenched off. Timothy was very determined, the harder the little shoes
pinched the more he was bound to have the bright yellow flowers; so, in
spite of the pain, he kept on going down toward the swamp.

When at last this little boy reached the foot of the bank and came to
the edge of the swamp he found that the cowslips were all out of reach.
Still he would have them. Round and round the swamp he went, the shoes
pinching and pulling harder at every step, till at last he grew quite
desperate and, giving a big jump, he landed right out in the swamp in
the very middle of a large clump of the flowers. Then something
strange happened, his feet sank down, down into the mud and water until
the little shoes were soaked right off. Poor, wayward Timothy's best
friends were gone, but he did not know that. He just waded around in
the swamp and picked cowslips to his heart's content.

At last, however, Timothy grew very tired. He hurt his foot on a sharp
stick. A great green frog jumped into his face and startled him. He
had more flowers than he could carry. Suddenly he remembered school
and his lost shoes and thought of what his mother had told him. Oh!
how he did wish now that he had done just as she asked him to do.

"What shall I say to the teacher?" he thought. "Oh, what shall I do?
How I wish I had gone straight to school as the little shoes tried to
have me go!"

Weary and sad Timothy climbed the bank. Wiping the mud from his
clothes with his handkerchief and taking his satchel, he started slowly
for school again, all the time wondering what he should say to the
teacher about being late. At last he reached the door and prepared to
tiptoe quietly in, but he had no sooner put his head inside and
commenced to make an excuse than all the children began to laugh.
Timothy was very much ashamed. He looked to find, what they were
laughing at and saw - What do you suppose he saw? Standing in the
middle of the floor, in the place in the class where he himself should
have stood, were his little shoes, very muddy indeed and with a cowslip
in each one of them.

"You have been in the swamp, Timothy," said the teacher. "Put on your
shoes."

When his lessons and his punishment were over, Timothy was very glad to
let the little shoes take him quickly home. And always after that he
tried to do what his mother and the little shoes wished him to do.




PICCIOLA.

ADAPTED FROM "SAINTINE."

Long, long ago a good man was thrown into prison by a great king. The
prison was dark and cold and still; for the gray stone walls and the
stone roof and floor shut out the sunlight and all the beautiful sights
and sounds of the world. There was no one for the man to talk to, and
there was no work for him to do. There was one little window to let in
the air, but it was so high up beyond his reach that he could not even
get a glimpse of the blue sky. Here he was kept for weeks and months
and years, and was not allowed to know anything about his family,
friends or home. At last a door was opened into another part of the
prison. The walls of this part were high and strong, and the floor was
paved with the same great, gray stones, but there was no roof overhead.
Here the wind could come in and the rain and the sunlight. He was
allowed to walk here just for one short hour each day, and then he had
to go back to his dark cell and the door was shut upon him.

Once while walking here the prisoner saw a little mound of earth rising
between two of the great stones of the floor. At first he thought that
some tiny worm or insect was trying to build a house for itself.
Looking closer he saw that it was only the home of a little plant. The
stray seed had been brought by the wind, and it was now sending its
roots down into the crevice between the stones. "Poor little plant!"
said the prisoner, "what a sad home you have found! Shall I not crush
you? No! Perhaps you have come to comfort me in this terrible place."
Hurrying to his cell, he brought his cup of precious water. "Drink!
little one," he cried, as he poured the water out around it. "Drink!
and lift up your head."

The next day he watched it again and watered it, and the next day, and
the next. How bravely it seemed to struggle to push its head up and
its roots down, to open its leaves and to catch, the dull light. At
last the little plant became a dear friend and companion to the man.
He would bend over it the whole hour each day and talk softly to it.
He called it Picciola, - his Picciola, - his little one, and as the plant
grew and put on new beauty he forgot his wrongs and his heart was
filled with love and gentleness.

Once there was a storm, and great hailstones beat down upon Picciola.
"Ah, my poor little one will be killed!" cried the prisoner. And he
bent over her and sheltered her and the cruel hail fell upon his own
head until the storm was past. Fearing that other storms might come
when he was shut away from her, he built a little house around her with
the wood that was given him to keep him warm, and made a roof over her
with a mat which he wove from the straw of his own bed. This made him
happy; for, though he could be with his Picciola for but one short hour
each day, he felt that she was safe. So the little plant grew and
grew, and opened her flowers and sent out her perfume to make glad the
heart of her lonely friend.

But, alas! the day came when Picciola began to droop and wither. She
seemed about to die. The poor prisoner was frantic with grief and
cried, "Is my little one, my joy, my hope, the only thing for which I
live, to be taken from me?" Searching, he found that as Picciola had
grown taller her stem had had grown larger, and now there was not room
enough for it in the crevice between the stones. Her sap, - her life
blood, - was running away, as the rough edges of the stones cut into her
delicate stem. Nothing could save her but to lift those cruel stones.
The prisoner tore at them with his weak hands. Weeping, he begged the
jailer to raise them, but the jailer could do nothing. No one but the
king could cause them to be lifted. But how could the prisoner ask the
king? The king was far away. The prisoner must send a letter to him,
but he had no pen, ink or paper; so he wrote on his handkerchief with a
bit of charred wood and begged, not for his own life, but for the life
of Picciola, - that the king would cause the stones that were killing
her to be raised.

When the king read the prisoner's letter he said, "No man who is really
wicked could care so much for a little, simple flower. I will not only
have the stones raised that are killing his Picciola, but I will pardon
him. He shall be free because of the love he bears his plant."

So the prisoner left his lonely cell carrying with him his
Picciola, - his little one whom he had saved and who in turn had set him
free.




CINDERELLA.

The room was dark, the fire was out and a little girl sat crying all
alone in the ashes. "I want to go to the party too!" she sobbed. "I
want to dance and wear a pretty dress, but my dress is ragged. My
sisters have gone and left me. Nobody wants me. It's so dark here I'm
afraid. Oh! I'm so cold." The tears ran down the face of this forlorn
little girl and fell in the ashes at her feet. Poor child! Poor
little maid! She had to wash and scrub and dust, while her sisters did
nothing but wear pretty clothes and go to all the parties. They never
thought of taking her with them. She was only fit to blacken their
boots and to mend their dresses. Because her hands and her hair were
sometimes gray and dusty from tending the fire and sweeping the hearth,


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Online LibraryJane L. HoxieA Kindergarten Story Book → online text (page 3 of 5)