Then the Decoration Day parade went on, and everyone said how brave Uncle Wiggily was. But he hadn’t yet found his fortune, and so in the story after this in case our front porch doesn’t run away, and take the back steps with it, so I have to sleep on the doormat, I’ll tell you about Uncle Wiggily in the fountain.
UNCLE WIGGILY IN THE FOUNTAIN
Well, after the Decoration Day parade, and the things that happened in it, such as the pony running away with Jimmie Wibblewobble, Uncle Wiggily Longears thought he’d like to go off to some quiet place and rest.
“Oh, can’t you come with me?” asked Percival, the old circus dog. “We’ll go to the Bow-Wows house, and have something to eat.”
“No, I’m afraid I can’t go,” replied the old gentleman rabbit. “You see I must travel on to seek my fortune, for I haven’t found it yet, and I still have the rheumatism.”
“Why don’t you try to lose that rheumatism somewhere?” asked Percival. “I would, if it’s such a bother.”
“Oh, I’ve tried and tried and tried, but I can’t seem to lose it,” replied Uncle Wiggily. “So I think I’ll travel on. I’m much obliged to you for letting me march in the parade.”
Then the old gentleman rabbit got his valise, and, with his crutch, he once more started off. He went on and on, up one hill and down another, over the fields where the horses and cows and sheep were pulling up the grass, and chewing it, so the man wouldn’t have to cut it with the lawn mower; on and on he went. Then Uncle Wiggily reached the woods, where the ferns and wild flowers grow.
“This is a fine place,” he said as he sat down on a flat stump. “I think I will eat my dinner,” so he opened the satchel, and took out a sandwich made of yellow carrots and red beets, and very pretty they looked on the white bread, let me tell you; very nice indeed!
Uncle Wiggily was eating away, and he was brushing the crumbs off his nose by wiggling his ears, when, all of a sudden, he heard a cat crying. Oh, such a loud cry as it was!
“Why, some poor kittie must be lost,” thought the old gentleman rabbit. “I’ll see if I can find it.”
Then the cry sounded again, and, in another moment, out of a tree flew a big bird.
“Oh, maybe that bird stuck his sharp beak in the kittie and made it cry,” thought Uncle Wiggily. “Bird, did you do that?” he asked, calling to the bird, who was flying around in the air.
“Did I do what?” asked the bird.
“Did you stick the kittie, and make it cry?”
“Oh, no,” answered the bird. “I made that cat-crying noise myself. I am a cat-bird, you know,” and surely enough that bird went “Mew! Mew! Mew!” three times, just like that, exactly as if a cat had cried under your window, when you were trying to go to sleep.
“Ha! That is very strange!” exclaimed the rabbit. “So you are a cat-bird.”