"The Cob Will Have Nowhere To Live" Children's Chapter Book
"The Cob Will Have Nowhere To Live" ( for Children of all ages..... )
"The Story Begins"
If the swoosh hadn't happened
and the thought hadn't been felt by the heart
If curiosity hadn't helped courage to explore
then the Cob and all the Adventures and Friendships that followed
would still be asleep on Daddy's shoulder
"This" he thought, "is grand...wonderful...absolutely the most excellent ride I have taken to date."
He hung from his silk, swinging back and forth. A warm breeze lifted him ever so slightly higher.
He breathed in deeply and sighed, a long sigh. "Ahhhhhhhhh"
Looking up, he saw the sun twinkling behind the leaves of his birch tree. They made shadows on each other.
"A most amazing effect" he thought...out loud. "When the sky peeks through the spaces between each leaf, it is indeed, the most beautiful, sun glistened, blue and green place. I couldn't imagine anything more wonderful. I am indeed a happy lad" he said, content with it all. This place, was his space, his home.
You see, "He" is one inch long and apple green, an eight footed creature of the caterpillar family, a silk weaving inchworm, who swings in birch trees, just enjoying the days as they pass. He is The Cob.
On this particular morning, he closed his eyes. Birds sang. He smiled and spoke.
"This is it...here I am, drifting, dreamily in the breeze, listening and..." Suddenly, startled, he exclaimed.
"Oh...Oh...Oh...My goodness..Oh My Word...Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!"
A very big gust of wind blew him way, way up into the air. Alarmed, he squeezed his eyes tightly shut, and let out his silk, as fast as he could manage it.
And so he did.
And down he went.
And down again.
"Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhooooooooooooo...... ..... ..... .... ... ... .. .. . . .
His voice faded. Another gust of wind blew...and then another, more steadily this time. The tree branches swayed with a rhythm that moved from one to the next. Leaves rubbed and rustled against each other. The sound could be heard all over Birch Hollow.
After a long, floating fall, all eight of The Cob's tiny feet touched down onto the hardest, surface they ever landed on. Cold, hard cement was not at all what his little feet were used to.
"Oh, this doesn't feel right" he said opening his eyes. He looked around. "Oh My Goodness, Oh My Word, this is definitely not a good predicament to be in. Where's the soft warm earth" He wiggled his toes and mumbled. "Where's the grass" He sniffed with his nose for the familiar scent. He lifted his body, stretching, as only an inch worm can do. "Where's my birch tree" He turned in a circle. Then he stopped, and looked and gave a yelp. "Where's my forest" He bent backwards as his eyes searched above him. "Walls" he whispered "and...more walls....way up there and all the way around. Oh My Socks" he exclaimed, pointing with his four front feet."There it is"
High above him, still swaying in the breeze, he saw his birch tree. Cob shook his head in disbelief.
"I've landed in something, in the basement of a house, maybe" Still looking up. "It has no roof on it" he mumbled. Cob stepped back. He thought "That sure is a long way up to climb", stretching his body to see as far as he could. "Hmmm" he mumbled again, tapping his feet. He stopped tapping and looked at his toes.Tap Tap, he tapped again, listening to the sound his toes made on the cement. Tap Tap Tap, "Hmmm" Cob turned and looked at the basement floor. "Curious" he mumbled. "Maybe I'll look around here for a little while." You see, exploring is something that inchworms love to do and they do it so well. " I do find it hard to resist a challenging opportunity, when it presents itself. This certainly is a strange and new situation I'm in" he said with great interest.
So The Cob took a small step forward. He inched first in one direction with a little hesitation. "Oh" Then, he inched his way in the other direction, always finding the same hard floor he had been on before. Inch by inch he explored. The cement felt warm and he liked the feeling. "Quite refreshing, I must say" He wiggled his toes. He explored all afternoon, finding bits of birch tree bark and leaves, metal nails and lots of wood shavings. The sun shined in through the space where the roof wasn't. Time passed happily for him.
Then, it was almost evening. The cement under foot became cool and damp. Because he was an inchworm, and a curious one at that, The Cob inched some more. "Does'nt feel like leaves after a light rain" he mumbled, wiggling his toes."There seems to be a never ending floor" he thought, looking back over his shoulder. In the dimming light, he saw the very largest, flattest, empty space he had ever seen.
"Brrr, I'm cold" The Cob stopped and shivered, rubbing his legs together, all eight of them. He was chilled and tired. "Rumble, grumble" His tummy made funny sounds. He rubbed it and sighed.
"I'm hungry." His tummy rumbled again. He looked about the floor for a moment more, and making his way to a small pool of water, he sipped. "Mmmm" Then, finding some moist leaves which had fallen from the trees above, he ate. "Yum, that's quite tasty" he thought. "at least the nibbles are the same."
The Cob ate and drank till his tummy was full and he was satisfied. He lifted his head to see his birch tree tops, and saw the basement window instead.
"That's not so far above me" he thought, rolling his eyes. Then he blinked and smiled a very big smile. The Cob had gotten an ingenious idea. "That window sill is much closer than climbing all the way up and all the way down and out, tonight." He thought. "I'll just rest there for the evening, and in the morning light, after a good sleep, I'll inch my way back to my birch tree, and be home in time for the day's goings on. That's just what I will do. I am so clever at figuring things out" He said to himself, with complete pride. He crept up the wall with the greatest of care. Reaching the sill, he pulled himself up, one leg, after another, after another, after another, till all of him was up, on the sill, safely and then settled comfortably next to the window.
"There" he yawned, nestling into a bunch of dry leaves. He stretched his legs and then his middle. "What I wouldn't give for a cozy bit of forest floor" He mumbled and snuggled down..."Crunch" the leaf pile moved. Looking up, between the branches of his birch tree, he saw the stars twinkling in the sky. He blinked his eyes and listened to familiar evening sounds, just beyond the window. Tree leaves softly rustled. In the grasses, he heard the scurrying of little critters, and above them, birds fluttered their wings. All were going home to their nests. All were looking forward to a warm and cozy night's rest.
This was the very first time The Cob had slept away from the forest. As he closed his eyes, a tear drop slid, gently down his cheek. He wiped it away with a sniff. "I'm so lonely for home" a voice said, somewhere deep inside him. Another tear fell. "I miss my own snuggly bed" he sniffed, "and being part of the evening sounds. I miss the forest floor, and all its familiar spaces." Taking a deep breath, he sighed "Hmm" and rolled over in his bed, too tired to think another thought. His breathing became deep and soft, slow and even, as he drifted into sleep. He dreamed of familiar places and blue and green spaces.
Beyond the window, behind him, the great forest trees grew black, against the moon lit sky, An owl hooted and crickets rubbed their legs, making sounds only they can make. Grasses moved in the gusts of wind, causing dry twigs and tree nuts to roll and bump like distant drums. Safe on the sill, in his leafy bed, The Cob stirred. He was dreaming. The wind blew...................it's sound was
Deep in his dreaming, The Cob listened and heard the wind's eery voice...could a whisperous breath be heard?
Yes.... yes.... it could. And the wind spoke.
In the air, a voice was heard.
"Something comes this way, I sense it
Mantis sss hears....Mantis sss knows
Quivering, crunching....moves the grasses....
Oderous breezes....nearer grow"
The wind blew above the forest floor. The Cob turned over quickly and shivered. His bed leaves crunched and scattered....he dreamed still.
"Hiss....Hiss....Hiss...." and another whisper....heard...
"Eyes will follow, slowly spying, every petal's leafy blade
Each one bending, quivering slightly
little Beasties are afraid.
Mantis sss stops, still and breathing
Head moves slowly left then right
Eyes keep searching in the grasses
For a tasty Beastie bite....Hiss"
Behind The Cob, large moving shadows appeared and disappeared upon the window.
The whisperous winds continued....
"For a tasty Beastie bite..."