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What happened to Charles

What happened to Charles 9 January 2015

What happened to Charles

The tale of Eva, the one-eared duck with two mouths

A farm horse named Charles was led to town one day by his owner, to be shod.

He would have been shod and brought back home without incident if it hadn't been for Eva, a duck, who was always hanging about the kitchen door of the farmhouse, eavesdropping, and never got anything quite right. Her farm-mates said of her that she had two mouths but only one ear.

On the day that Charles was led away to the smithy, Eva went quacking about the farm, excitedly telling the other animals that Charles had been taken to town to be shot....

The Sea and the Shore

The Sea and the Shore 9 January 2015

The Sea and the Shore

Excerpt: (click main title for full article)
By James Thurber

A pair of gibbous creatures, who had lived in the sea since time began, which hadn't been long before, were washed upon the shore one day and became the discoverers of land. "The light that never was!" exclaimed the female, lying on the sand in the sun.

"You're always seeing things that never were," grumbled the male. "You're always wanting things that aren't yet."

In the female, lying on the sand in the sun, a dim intuition and prescience began developing. She prefigured mistily things that would one day become rose-point lace and taffeta, sweet perfumes and jewelry. The male, who had a feeling only for wetness and wash, mumbled, "You're a little moist for things like that, a little moist and shapeless."

"I only need to lose a little amorphousness around the waist," she said. "It won't take more than a million years." And she began flobbering, almost imperceptibly, toward the scrubby brown growth beyond the sand and toward the sun. "Come on," she said. But the male had globbed back into the sea, and was gone....

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Butterfly, Ladybug, and Phoebe

9 January 2015

Butterfly, Ladybug, and Phoebe

Excerpt: (click main title for full article)
By James Thurber

A phoebe, bugwinner for a nestful of fledglings, flew out one day to provide dinner for his family, and came upon a ladybug in frantic flight.

"I know you can catch anything smaller than a golf ball and slower than sound," said the ladybug, "for you are the fastest of the fly-catchers, but my house is on fire and my children will burn unless I fly away home."

The phoebe, who had sometimes been guilty of wishing that his own house were on fire, let the ladybug fly away, and turned his attention to a beautiful butterfly.

"Is your house on fire and will your children burn?" the phoebe asked....

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