AN EXCITING DAY FOR DANNY MEADOW MOUSE
ANNY MEADOW MOUSE started along one of his private little paths very
early one morning. He was on his way to get a supply of
a certain kind of grass-seed of which he is very fond.
He had been thinking about that seed for some time and
waiting for it to get ripe. Now it was just right, as
he had found out the day before by a visit to the place
where this particular grass grew. The only trouble was
it grew a long way from Danny's home, and to reach it
he had to cross an open place where the grass was so
short that he couldn't make a path under it.
"I feel it in my bones that this is going to be an
exciting day," said Danny to himself as he trotted
along. "I suppose that if I were really wise, I would
stay nearer home and do without that nice seed. But
nothing is really worth having unless it is worth
working for, and that seed will taste all the better if
I have hard work getting it."
So he trotted along his private little path, his ears
wide open, and his eyes wide open, and his little nose
carefully testing every Merry Little Breeze who
happened along for any scent of danger which it might
carry. Most of all he depended upon his ears, for the
grass was so tall that he couldn't see over it, even
when he sat up. He had gone only a little way when he
thought he heard a queer rustling behind him. He
stopped to listen. There it was again, and it certainly
was right in the path behind him! He didn't need to be
told who was making it. There was only one who could
make such a sound as that—Mr. Blacksnake.
Now Danny can run very fast along his private little
paths, but he knew that Mr. Blacksnake could run
faster. "If my legs can't save me, my wits must,"
thought Danny as he started to run as fast as ever he
could. "I must reach that fallen old hollow
He was almost out of breath when he reached the post
and scurried into the open end. He knew by the sound of
the rustling that Mr. Blacksnake was right at his
heels. Now the old post was hollow its whole length,
but half-way there was an old knot-hole just big enough
for Danny to squeeze through. Mr. Blacksnake didn't
know anything about that hole, and because it was dark
inside the old post, he didn't see Danny pop through
it. Danny ran back along the top of the log and was
just in time to see the tip of Mr. Blacksnake's tail
disappear inside. Then what do you think Danny did?
Why, he followed Mr. Blacksnake right into the old
post, but in doing it he didn't make the least little
bit of noise.
Mr. Blacksnake kept right on through the old post and
out the other end, for he was sure that that was the
way Danny had gone. He kept right on along the little
path. Now Danny knew that he wouldn't go very far
before he found out that he had been fooled, and of
course he would come back. So Danny waited only long
enough to get his breath and then ran back along the
path to where another little path branched off. For
just a minute he paused.
"If Mr. Blacksnake follows me, he will be sure to think
that of course I have taken this other little path,"
thought Danny, "so I won't do it."
Then he ran harder than ever, until he came to a place
where two little paths branched off, one to the right
and one to the left He took the latter and scampered
on, sure that by this time Mr. Blacksnake would be so
badly fooled that he would give up the chase. And Danny
"Brains are better far than speed
As wise men long ago agree,"
said Danny, as he trotted on his way for the grass-seed
he liked so well. "I felt it in my bones that this
would be an exciting day. I wonder what next."
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