LITTLE JACK RABBIT





COUSIN CHATTERBOX

Little Jack Rabbit loved the snow that covered the ground with a soft white carpet. His feet never grew cold. No siree, they didn’t. All the little Forest Folk liked the snow, for Loving Mother Nature had given them warm fur, and warm fur laughs at cold just as love laughs at troubles.

Even Mrs. Grouse was happy. And if you’ve forgotten why, I’ll tell you again. It was because dear Mother Nature had given her a pair of snow-shoes. Yes, indeed. The skin had grown out between her toes until she could walk as nicely as you please over the snow. And what is more, Loving Mother Nature had taught her to dive into a snowbank where she could stay for the night as snug and warm as you please, when Old Mr. North Wind blew upon his chilly horn.

Neither did Squirrel Nutcracker care that the ground was covered with snow, and he could find no more nuts. He had a supply hidden safely away in the old hollow chestnut tree. But he did mind having other people take them. And when his cousin, Chatterbox, in his red fur coat, tried to break into his storehouse, Squirrel Nutcracker was as mad as mad could be.

“Whoever steals a nut from me
From out my storehouse in this tree,
A friend of mine shall be no more,
So let him stay outside my store.”

Chatterbox grew very angry as he peeped down from the chestnut tree and saw Little Jack Rabbit with a big smile on his face. It told the naughty red squirrel that the little rabbit knew whom the little gray squirrel meant.

But when Little Jack Rabbit opened his knapsack and took out a lemon lollypop, you should have seen those two squirrels forget all about their quarrel and scramble down the big chestnut tree. Yes, sir. Squirrel Nutcracker forgot that Chatterbox wanted to steal his nuts, and Chatterbox forgot that he had been caught! And now that I come to think it over, perhaps that is the reason the little bunny laughed just before he opened his knapsack! I guess he knew how quickly those two little squirrels would forget everything when they saw a lemon lollypop!

“Now promise me one thing today,
You little squirrels, red and gray,
That you will quarrel nevermore
Nor steal a nut from any store.
For he who steals will always end
In having neither love nor friend.”

Now don’t you think it wonderful that the little rabbit could make up such lovely poetry? Well, I do, but the two little squirrels thought what he does in the next story even more wonderful.

But you must not impatient get,
If mother says, it’s growing late.
Just wait until another time,
And kiss goodnight your Auntie Kate.



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