Farmer's Scarecrow Protects A Corn-field

: Daddy's Bedtime Bird Stories

"To-night," said daddy, "we are going to have the story of the meeting

of the brownies, crows, and old Mr. Scarecrow. The crows had been giving

feasts in a corn-field almost every morning bright and early before any

of the big people who lived in the nearby farm-house were up. Such

feasts as they did have! And one day they asked the brownies if they

wouldn't come to their next one.

"'Caw-caw,' said the cr
ws together.

"'Where are we going?' asked one of the brownies teasingly, for they had

been going around and around in circles and hadn't reached any place.

"'I don't quite know,' said Black Crown Crow, 'it's a question which is

very hard to decide.'

"'But we thought you had chosen a special spot,' said one of the


"Black Crown Crow looked very sad, and his black wings seemed to droop.

'It's that guest I never asked. He's causing all the trouble. How very

rude it is of folks to come to a feast who aren't invited, and to arrive

before us, too. It's very e-x-a-s-p-e-r-a-t-i-n-g!'

"'Who is he?' shouted the brownies, for every little while Black Crown

Crow had gone ahead and then had come back. In these little trips he had

seen right in the center of the corn-field a man--a real man, he

thought, with a hat and a coat and trousers and boots--and carrying

something which he couldn't quite make out. It was either a great huge

stick--or worse still--it was a gun. He shivered whenever he thought of

that awful word gun.

"'Caw-caw,' again shrieked Black Crown Crow, 'it's a man and he has a

gun--I'm sure it's a gun. Now the rudeness of him! As if we wanted a

man and a gun at our corn feast!'

"'Oh, it was to have been a corn feast, and now the man has stopped it,'

laughed one of the brownies. 'Well, such a joke! But to show you how

nice we'll be when we're here ready for a party which can't take place,

we'll give a nice party ourselves.'

"And the brownies scampered about a little grove near the corn-field,

and there they made a bonfire over which they cooked some corn-meal

which they had carried with them in their bags. They knew all along,

ever since they'd started, where the crows wanted them to go for the

feast, and they also knew that the farmer had made that scarecrow in his

corn-field to frighten off Black Crown Crow and his followers.

"The brownies made a fine feast, but how they did chuckle among

themselves that the pole dressed up as a man had succeeded in saving

the corn for the people of the farm-house."