FEDERAL WRITERS' PROJECT American Guide, (Negro Writers' Unit) Martin Richardson, Field Worker Greenwood, Florida March 18, 1937 BILL AUSTIN Bill Austin--he says his name is NOT Williams--is an ex-slave who gained his freedom becaus... Read more of Bill Austin at Martin Luther King.caInformational Site Network Informational
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Jack Frost

from Keep-well Stories For Little Folks





Children, do you know who Jack Frost is? Well, he is a frisky little
fellow. He never seems to lose his youth and freshness, although he is
as old as time itself.

When the days grow shorter and the nights get longer, Jack Frost is a
regular busybody--he is here, there, and everywhere. Jack does not make
long visits in the Sunny Southland. The warm sunshine and balmy winds
chase him back to the North, his native land.

Jim lives in the North where Jack Frost makes long visits, sometimes
remaining from early autumn until late in the spring. Jim says he likes
Jack Frost and the gay times and sports he brings with him for the
little boys and girls of the North. Jim loves to skate and sleigh ride.

Jack Frost is a mischievous little elf; he skips gaily around while you
are asleep. He peeps into your windows to see if you are tucked snugly
in bed. He dances on the window panes, and covers them with beautiful
crystals that he must have brought from fairyland.

He goes whistling down the street on the wind in the early morning. He
gleefully snips at the noses of the old gentlemen as they step briskly
along to their business.

Jack gives these old folks a bit of his youth as they feel his
frolicsome touch. He makes them think of the days when they were boys,
how they used to run out to meet him with a jump and a skip. He reminds
them of the days long ago, when they made a snow man in the school-yard,
and when they played snowball on the way to and from school. As they
think of these frolics with Jack Frost, each one seems to quicken his
step. Could you look into their eyes you would see how they sparkle with
the memories of youth that Jack Frost has recalled.

He frolics about among the trees. As he touches them with his wand,
their bright green coat is changed to a soft brown one. He tells the
little sleeping buds to lie still. They must not even peep out while he
is in the air.

Jack waves his wand and covers brown Mother Earth with sparkling frost
or downy snow. The little seed babies snuggle close, and whisper to each
other of how good Jack Frost is to cover them from the biting winter
wind with this beautiful warm blanket of snow. This blanket is finer and
warmer than any ever woven by man.

Even after the snow has melted, Jack Frost tells the little seed babies
not to lift their heads from under their blanket of leaves until the
warm spring days wake them.

He shows to the children of the Southland only a few of his pranks; now
and then a beautiful frost that is soon chased back to the North by the
warm sun; sometimes a wonderful snow-storm from the Northwest. How
joyous these children of the Sunny South are when Jack does give them a
touch of old King Winter! There are many children here as old as you,
who have never seen one of Jacks beautiful white blankets.

In the Northland Jack is a very terrible old fellow. There are ice and
snow on the ground for many months. The people build very warm houses to
keep Jack Frost out.

Did you ever think of the little Eskimo boys and girls in their cold
country? They wear clothes made of skins and furs. They live in snow
houses, but they manage to keep warm. The little Eskimo children are
used to the cold, for Jack Frost plays his pranks all the year round in
the land of the long, long nights.

They have great sport going here and there on their snow-shoes, and in
their sleds drawn by their faithful dogs.

In our own Northland, Jack is a very frisky fellow. He touches the lakes
and rivers with his magic wand and covers them with ice. Ah! now comes
the best of fun, for now old Jack Frost is ready for you to have the
finest of sports. You must put on warm clothes and high, heavy shoes and
run out to play with him.

Children who have colds and sore throats can not play. So he says, "Wrap
up warm, come out into the fresh air." Let the pure frosty air get into
your lungs, and sweep out old disease germs that may have hidden there.
Come with me to the pond. The ice is thick and smooth. Put on your
skates and let us go skimming over the ice. You will feel the warm red
blood, made clean and pure by the frosty air, tingling all over your
body. I tell you, Jack Frost is a good friend.

Jack Frost often hurts the poor, pinching too hard their fingers and
toes. So, while you are warmly clad and prepared for a frolic with him,
you must remember there are some children to whom Jack Frost is not such
a welcome friend.

He nips with his cold fingers the insects that do our plants harm. With
his icy breath, he kills many of the germs that would hurt you.

Jack Frost helps to give you health, and health means joy, strength,
happiness and success.


QUESTIONS

1. Who is Jack Frost, where does he come from?

2. What does he bring?

3. What does he say to the little seed babies and
buds?

4. What does he say to the young folks?

5. Who are the Eskimos, where do they live?

6. Of what, and how, do they build their houses?

7. What does Jack Frost do to some of the disease
germs?

8. Can you tell me something of the games the
children play in the lands where Jack Frost
visits? In the land where he never comes?





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