The Star in the Orchard
A European folk tale. There are many variants of little red house with no windows and no doors, and a star inside, wherre either a boy or a girl is the seeker. I have a fondness for sparrows, so this is the version you get here.
The Star in the Orchard
Two little sparrows were sitting on the limb of a tree, as sparrows do, and one of the little sparrows said, “The robin told me that if I looked hard enough in the forest, I would find a little red house with a tiny brown chimney, with the most magnificent star inside.”
“I have never seen anything like that,” the other sparrow said, ruffling his feathers, as sparrows do.
“Well, I am going to find it,” the first sparrow said, and hopped off the tree limb, spreading his wings to glide and swoop through the trees. The little bird came upon a raccoon in the forest, and perched on a nearby rock.
“Mr. Raccoon,” the little bird said, “Where can I find a little red house with a brown chimney and a wonderful star inside?”
“I don’t know,” said the raccoon, “go ask the rabbit,” and he scampered away, as raccoons do.
Then the little bird found a rabbit and asked, “Mrs. Rabbit, where can I find a little red house with a brown chimney and a wonderful star inside?”
The rabbit twitched its nose, as rabbits do, and said, “I do not know, why don’t you ask the wise old owl?” So the little bird flew high in the trees, chirping and flapping its wings to wake the wise old owl, who, as you know, sleeps during the daytime.
“Why are you waking me up?” hooted the owl.
The little bird said, “I am sorry Mr. Owl, but I am searching the forest to find a little red house with a tiny brown chimney, and a stupendous star inside.”
Mr. Owl said, “I know what you are looking for, but you can’t find it in the forest, you have to look in the orchard.” Mr. Owl yawned and added, “But you won’t find it in a cherry tree, or a pear tree, or…” and Mr. Owl fell asleep.
So the little bird flew out of the forest and through the valley until he found an orchard. He flew past some cherry trees, then pear trees, and finally came across a farmer who was out picking some apples. The little bird asked the farmer, “I am looking for a little red house with a tiny brown chimney and a wonderful star inside.”
The farmer laughed and said, “I think I know what you are looking for,” and picked a ripe red apple from the tree. “Doesn’t this look like a little red house, and the stem, a tiny brown chimney?” asked the farmer. “Now, if you look inside,” said the farmer, as he took his pocket knife and cut across the center of the apple. “Here is the star,” and the farmer showed the little bird the center of the apple.
“Oh, I see,” said the little bird.