Breakfast Time

Tea and Toast

Tea and toast

That’s the breakfast

That Herbert likes most

He would rather have some toast and jelly

Than anything else to fill his belly.

The guru would often offer an egg

But Herbert would grumble

Ugh, no way!

Tea and Toast

Tea and Toast

That’s the breakfast

That Herbert likes most

Maybe and orange?

Maybe and apple?

With hash browns and

Lots of scrapple?

Tea and toast

Tea and toast

That’s the breakfast

That Herbert likes most.

Herbert Used to Love Popcorn

Herbert loved story-time.  Late in the evenings after the Guru had combed out Herbert’s fleece, he would sit in front of the fire while the Guru’s loving voice told stories of far-away lands. The Guru often made a big bowl of popcorn with butter and lots of salt; Herbert would munch away, feeling very safe and secure on the Guru’s lap.

 

One night as the Guru had started the third story of the evening; Herbert was feeling particularly drowsy as the Guru’s deep voice floated around the hut the two of them shared in the summertime.  Herbert stopped, mid-munch when he heard a high-pitched squeal.

 

“Hey, that tickles!”

 

Herbert thought he must have been dreaming.  Then he heard it again louder.  “Stop chewing on me, please.”   Herbert abruptly stopped chewing.  It was hard not to obey especially since whatever-it-was had asked so very nicely.  As Herbert gasped in amazement, his mouth flew open and out popped a small but spunky kernel of popcorn.  It did a back flip in the air and landed in the bowl in front of Herbert.

 

It sat in the bottom of the bowl swimming carefree in the pond of butter settling in the bottom.

 

“Ah, that’s better.” It crooned happily.

 

Herbert could not believe his eyes (or his ears).

 

“I thought you were just a delicious snack.  I had no idea I was munching on you and your friends.  A thousand apologies.”  Herbert gave an awkward little curtsey wondering if this was the appropriate way to address a snack-food.

 

Just when he thought he must be dreaming, every kernel of popcorn jumped out of the bowl and started dancing in geometric shapes.  They sang a little song and spelled out, “We love you, Herbert.”

Only they didn’t cross the “t”.  Herbert had been nibbling after all.

 

 

 

 

 

Herbert Dances up a Storm

Once upon a time, Herbert was playing in the meadow. It was very hot and Herbert hadn’t been shorn so he was very, very uncomfortable. He wondered what he could do because the Guru was off fishing and couldn’t help him. Herbert knew that it was too soon for him to be shorn and besides, he really worried about doing such a thing all by himself. The last time he tried the Guru was very upset for a very long time. Herbert had no idea why.

Herbert walked near the cold Crystal Lake. Although it helped just a bit, the more Herbert walked, the hotter he became. He tried climbing a tree, which took him several tries before he got a firm hoof-hold. Herbert had heard that above all the hot air near the warm earth, a cool breeze blew, especially in the mornings. (Herbert reminded himself to talk to whomever he had heard this from, because today, they were most assuredly wrong.) Herbert stomped along in a bad temper, which did nothing to alleviate his discomfort.

Just then, Herbert felt something buzz by his left ear. At first he thought it was a giant bumblebee and tried to dodge out of the way, but then the “bumble bee” started singing and laughing. At first Herbert was surprised that anything could sing and laugh on such a hot day and then he remembered his friends, the pixie-sprites.

This particular one was singing a fast, upbeat tune and harmonizing it with bells tied on to her feet with ankle bracelets. Herbert thought this was a wonderful idea and wondered where he could get a 2 sets of those beautiful bells. The pixie produced four of them that just happened to fit around Herbert’s wooly ankles. Herbert was so happy.

After a hilarious minute of trying to get into the ankle-bracelets, Herbert was ready to join in the dance. He danced and danced to the pixie’s singing. They were joined by a circle of pixies who lived in the large maple trees that bent in the increasing wind. Before they knew it, a strong wind had risen; the clouds looked grayer and large splattery raindrops began to fall. Herbert was having so much fun he barely noticed. He just kept singing (badly) and dancing (up a storm). He realized he was no longer uncomfortable or bored. When tge Guru returned, he would have a story to tell!

Daisies

The Dream girl
Holds the petals of spring daisies
Clasped to her heart
A locket given her
By a lover of life.

And the fire of her eyes
And the embers of her heart
Ignite with the possibility
Of all she is and could future be

The absences endured as the night creeps upon her
What becomes of the fire, the silver-gold
Remembrance of things once
Wished for?

Proving an
Answer
over and over
Again.

Herbert and the Singing Roses

Roses aren’t, as a rule, supposed to sing. Well, they do when they are *really* very happy, but no one had heard the roses in the meadow break into song for many long years in Herbert’s magic meadow. Herbert didn’t know why the flowers had been silent. The sun still shown warm on the grass and the trees. The rains still came and the birds still built nests and the arms of the strong oaks that grew at the borders of the lush countryside. Everything seemed perfect to Herbert. Yet, there was no song lilting on the summer breeze.

The more Herbert thought about it, the more he worried that something was amiss with the beautiful flowers whose heads waved to and fro in the breeze. They never said a word to him, no matter how much he asked them. The red ones smiled. They yellow ones fluttered their eyelashes (Yes they have eyes if you know where to look!) The white ones stood serene and dignified in quiet little rows. Herbert was perplexed. When this happens, you know that Herbert becomes even more obsessed with finding the answers.

Herbert asked the Guru who wisely advised him to let the flowers be, that they knew what they needed and would sing when they were ready…when the conditions were just right. Raymond, the squirrel tried to distract Herbert with a game of tag, which worked for a while until Herbert came to a skidding stop at the edge of the garden. Bettina, the bumblebee tried to sing a buzzy song of her own, and Herbert thought it was beautiful and what a lovely duet it would make….

Herbert decided to do what he always did in perplexing situations. He thought the pixie-sprites knew much more about this kind of thing than he did. In fact, he realized that they were the ones who planted the lovely flowers, so he made ready to visit them in the great tree where they lived at the edge of the great forest.

Herbert walked and walked. He skipped part of the way when the trek got boring. He sang a little ditty and did a few dance steps on the tippy-toe part of his hooves. Soon he was there.

“How do I get the roses to sing to me?” He pleaded with the beautiful red-haired pixie with the green gossamer dress. She looked at Herbert with kindness.

Before I will answer you, dear Herbert, I would like you to stand on your head and say the alphabet.” Herbert knew the alphabet, but sometimes he got lost in all the confusing letters in the middle. He didn’t want to look silly in front of the beautiful fairies. Herbert looked down at the turf and scuffed his hooves.

On the way home Herbert thought about all the things he didn’t want to do and the reasons why. Then it came to him that maybe the roses had reasons why singing wasn’t what they wanted to do either. He thought he was ok with the fact that maybe the roses didn’t want to sing just then. The flowers nodded their beautiful heads, smiled and started to hum quietly.

Herbert and the Beautiful Swan

F9A0D14C-56FB-4C29-9C19-AFBB05EBFCC5

Herbert woke up to a day that was bright and clear. The sun was up shining strongly by the time he chose to peep through the window of the bungalow Herbert shared with his friend, the Guru. Herbert was happy when the sun came to visit him in the morning. The Guru had gone to the forest to pick berries for Herbert’s breakfast and Herbert was all by himself. Sometimes, Herbert liked to have company in the morning. He would ask the sun riddles until the sun went laughing on his way to warm his other friends in the meadow.

Herbert waited for some time for the Guru to return. Since there was no sign of him, Herbert set out on his way to the great forest to search for his friend. He traveled up hills, around a large copse of daisies, over more hills that looked remarkable like the hills he had just passed and through more daisies. Herbert had a feeling he might be lost, but he didn’t want to alarm anyone (himself included).

Eventually, Herbert got tired and decided to rest near a lovely crystal lake. He though it looked so lovely shimmering in the sun’s light and Herbert wondered for a moment if his friend, the sun, had just visited there. Out if the cool mist emerged a beautiful bird floating across the glassy surface of the water. Herbert thought she was very beautiful, so beautiful that he was almost afraid to talk to her and break the magical spell that seemed to fade into the silence. Herbert wished he could float that gracefully. He admired the lovely silver-white bird with her elegant neck and soulful eyes.

Herbert called to the swan, effectively breaking the spell with a Herbert-like “pop”.

“Hey! Hey, pretty swimming bird,” he rang out in his playful singsong voice. At first, the swan took no notice, but after the third attempt to catch her attention, craned her lovely head elegantly in Herbert’s direction.

“Can you please teach me to swim? Herbert pleaded. “I would love to float like you do, but I am afraid I am too clumsy and the water would soak my fleece. I would sink right to the bottom!” “But I so want to learn to swim!”

The swan took one look at Herbert’s fleece, his rather shiny (but heavy-looking) hooves and made a strange noise in her throat. Herbert wasn’t sure, but she might have been giggling. He really didn’t mind. How many times has anyone seen a swimming sheep? Herbert started to laugh to himself at the idea and soon doubled over with the hilarity of it. The swan waited patiently for Herbert to pull himself back together. There is nothing sillier than a sheep with the giggles.

The swan bent her head back and plucked a magic feather from her wing and placed it on Herbert’s nose. Herbert tried really hard not to sneeze. He started to change gradually. His fleece became silver and he was growing feathers. In a few short moments Herbert noticed that he looked almost exactly like the beautiful swan. He walked to the water tentatively admiring his reflection. His feet were bright orange, which almost started another round of giggles, but all Herbert heard was the honking sound of his own voice. He sat in the water flapping his great wings and swishing his feet madly. He seemed to knw exactly what to do.

Oh what fun he had! He did several laps around the lake. He and the beautiful swan ran races, something very new since swans mostly sat on the water looking elegant. Herbert was happy that the swan had allowed him to know what it was like to really swim. When Herbert became tired from all the swimming, he bounced back on the shore of the mighty lake and back came his fleece and shiny black hooves. As a sheep again, Herbert thanked the beautiful swan who nodded her head kindly. When Herbert got home the Guru was there with berries and Herbert told him al about his eventful day.