Peewee’s Lesson

In a large farmyard, Peewee lived with his mother. Peewee was a soft, downy little chicken; his feet were yellow, and his eyes sparkled so that they made you want to look at them all the time; they were so bright. And then he had such a cunning way of winking and of keeping one eye shut for a long time while he looked all around with the other. Peewee had a good mother who loved her little chicken very dearly and watched closely that everything was comfortable for her chick. When the little fellow was awakened by the crowing of the king of the farmyard, he would take a peep from under his mother’s wings and watch the great sun grow smaller the higher up it came in the sky, and then he would look at the grass so refreshed after its night’s bath.

“Everything is so lovely in this world,” thought Peewee while eating his good breakfast. “Is there any other chicken so happy as I am?”

One day some new neighbors, very young people with their mother, came to live close by. They were noisy but so good-natured that Peewee longed to meet them; he was certain that he would like them. The mothers soon were friends; and although one was a duck, their friendship, as well as that of their children, was a good one. They would have long talks and many pleasant walks together, and all went well until one warm morning they came to a pool of water. The little ducks, with their mother, jumped in and were soon floating gracefully on the top of the water. Peewee wanted to join in too; he knew he couldn’t swim, but he ran along to the water’s edge, and putting his wee feet in, enjoyed the coolness. But the ground on which he stood sloped very gently, and it must have been a little slippery, for Peewee felt himself sliding very slowly but surely toward the deep water. Poor frightened little Peewee! He could only call a few times, “Peep, peep!” and when his mother turned to look, she saw her baby certainly going to his death. Oh! how fast she ran to the water’s edge, flapping her wings and crying piteously. Mother Duck, seeing the trouble, swam quickly to the spot and gave Peewee a push toward the bank with her broad beak, which sent him up on the dry grass. Peewee followed his mother home, walking very quietly and very slowly. He couldn’t walk fast, for he was water-soaked and stiff. I think the old hen knew this, for she was a most thoughtful mother, and I think too she was sorry for her child, who never uttered a peep the whole way. As they neared home, the mother turned and said, “Never forget, my child, that some are made to go on the water, and some to stay on dry land.”

When dinner was finished, our little friend stood, thinking and winking. The feathered people were all going to bed; first one hen and then another, with a loud cluck, cluck, would fly to a bar of her own choosing, and settle herself for the night. The flowers in the distance seemed tired too; some had even closed their cups, and the summer breeze was rocking them gently to sleep. The buzzing insects were gone, and the sun was fast going. Still little Peewee stood there, his face toward the sunset.

“It is bedtime,” said his mother, “but tell me first what my little chick is thinking of?”

Peewee went slowly to his mother, and just before hiding himself under her sheltering wing, he said, “I was thinking, dear mother, that some are made to go on the water, and some to stay on dry land.”

His mother smiled and replied, “That is true, my dear. Each of us has our own strengths and abilities, and we should always embrace them and use them to our advantage.”

Peewee snuggled up close to his mother and drifted off to sleep, feeling safe and loved. As he dreamed, he imagined all the different adventures he could have on dry land and all the new friends he could make. He knew that he was just as special as any other animal in the farmyard and that his mother would always be there to support him.

The next morning, Peewee woke up feeling excited and ready to explore. He looked out at the world with his bright, sparkly eyes and knew that anything was possible. With a happy cluck, he hopped out from under his mother’s wing and began to explore his home, eager to see what the day would bring.