Was She Lonely?

Illustration:  The Curious Book of Birds.  Written by Abbie Farwell Brown.  Illustrations by E. Boyd Smith.  Houghton, Mifflin & Company:  Boston & New York. 1903.

Mr. Stork and Miss Heron

. . . “a nice dry house which I should be glad to have you share with me. Come, Miss Heron!  Here I am a lonely old bachelor, and here you are a lonely old maid” –

“Lonely old maid, indeed!” screamed the Heron interrupting him.  “I don’t know what it is to be lonely.  Go along with you!” and she splashed water on him with her wings, she was so indignant.

Poor Mr. Stork felt very crestfallen at this reception of his well-meaning invitation.  He turned about and stalked away towards the nest upon the roof, without so much as saying good-by to the lady.

But no sooner was he out of sight than Miss Heron began to think.  He had said that she was lonely; was she lonely?  Well, perhaps he ought to know better than she, for he was a very wise bird.  Perhaps she was lonely, now that she came to think of it.  However, there was no reason why she should go to live in that stupid, dry, old nest on the house-top.  Why could he not come to dwell in her lovely, mushy-squshy, wady-shady swamp?  That would be pleasant, for he was a good sort of fellow with nice long legs; and there were fish enough in the water for two.  Besides, he could then do the fishing for the family; and, moreover, there would then be two to admire her reflection in the water.  Yes; her mind was made up.  She would invite him.  She glanced down at her reflection and settled some of the feathers which her fit of temper had ruffled out of order.  Then off she started in pursuit of Mr. Stork.

The Curious Book of Birds.

Written by Abbie Farwell Brown.

Illustrations by E. Boyd Smith.

Houghton, Mifflin & Company: Boston & New York. 1903.

5 thoughts on “Was She Lonely?

    1. Dear Claudia,

      Well, the end is a bit sad – she catches up with him . . . they argue about where to live . . .
      “In the end . . . if you are not asleep . . . You may go on just as long as you can keep awake. For the tale has no end, no end at all. It is still going on to this very day. The Stork still lives lonely on his house-top, and the Heron still lives lonely in her marsh, growing lonlier and lonlier, both of them. But because they have no tact, they are never able to agree to the same thing at the same time. And they keep flying back and forth saying the same things over, and over, and over and over . . .” The End (Sorry it is not a happy ending)

  1. That stork is very reminiscent of the bag-bird from W. Heath Robinson’s Adventures of Uncle Lubin. A very worthwhile if you can manage to get your hands on a copy.

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