A little hen’s
Along the fens:
A little key!
A little cock
With puffed-out breast
A little chest!
Inside the chest,
all stiff and dead;
A little tail
With fur of red!
Yes, it’s a short tale.
It’s not a tale at all! It stops just as it was getting interesting!
Well, what do you think happens next?
What do I think happens next? What about what happened before?! Someone had to have a reason to lock up that tail and toss the key somewhere else. Maybe no one was supposed to find that chest, maybe opening it let out some kind of evil!
That’s an interesting possibility.
And what happened to the chickens when they opened it up? Did they die of fright? Did the tail jump out at them and chase them around the woodlands? Maybe it was the devil’s tail!
All of these are equally plausible, little one.
I don’t like this tale, it cheats.
“The Short Tale,” story number 250 from The Complete Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm translated by Jack Zipes, as reinterpreted by me, David Elzey. Part of
a complete breakfast an ongoing project to reinterpret the Grimm tales over the course of many, many Thursdays.
The original of this story is 43 words long and makes just as much sense as my rhymed verses. Two birds, a key, a chest, and a little red fur inside, the end. Woe to the child who was gyped at bedtime with this tale.