Sammy the Shrew Gets to Play... by Balisha
The little family, who lived under the big blue Spruce, was waiting patiently for the lights to go out in the little house by the edge of the woods. The family named Shrew, had lived there since summer and they had a cozy little home under Blue's pine needle blanket.
The blizzard had just finished. It was a storm like no other. Mama and Papa Shrew and their little one, Sammy, had dug in for winter's fury.It was toasty warm under the pine needles and they could easily find seeds and tiny insects in the earth.It was so cold, after the storm, that they had temporarily hibernated, but now they were wide awake and looking for food. Now you know that shrews have poor vision, but they have a keen sense of smell and their hearing is superb. There were no sounds in the out of doors, no birds chirping, no children playing...just the sounds of snow machines in the distance. Sammy was full of vim and vinegar. He just wanted to go out and make trails with his pals.He had to wait, however, until it was dark and the rest of the world was asleep. Sammy was so impatient...he scuffed his feet, and muttered to himself, "I never get to do anything fun." He was supposed to hunt for food, but that was so boring. He knew that if he could only go out...he could find seed under the bird feeders. Plump sunflower seeds, millet, maybe some suet. He wanted action. Mama and Papa were busy finding things to eat for the family. The tree was home to other creatures . Little birds huddled in the branches above...just taking off for food and coming right back. Little Sammy squinted his beady little eyes to capture the beauty of the majestic Cardinal. The birds were all talking about the harsh winter. The Cardinal said, "Let's stay right where we are...the man and woman of the house keep the feeders filled and we might be able to survive the winter." So, Blue's branches were heavy carrying the weight of so many birds. The wise old Owl flew in from the nearby woods, "There's sure to be another storm, please stay put and don't leave the comfort of the tree,' he said. Sammy stamped his little foot and shrugged his little shrew shoulders. "Drats," he said, "I'll never get to go out trailing with my friends." Mama and Papa were napping after an early evening of foraging. Sammy decided not to wait for them. He tugged at his little fur coat and peeked out...at last the lights were out in the little house. The man and his wife had finally gone to bed. It was a very dark night, but that is the best time for Shrews. Sammy ventured out, holding his furry coat for protection against the wind. He shrilled his high pitched sound (that humans can't hear) and some of his buddys came to join him. Right in front of them was a huge expanse of freshly fallen snow. No one had even walked on it yet. No snowmen, no snow angels. It was perfect for trailing. The little Shrews scurried through the snow with their little, pointed, long, noses tunnelling forward. The snow was cast aside as they chased each other. In and out they careened around Blue. The whizzed under the bird feeders and grabbed a seed as they went flying by. Mama and Papa had just come out to join the fun. They went a little slower, because they were old. The moon peeked out from behind a cloud and smiled at the spectacle going on below. After a few games of tag the little Shrews were growing tired. Soon the sun would be up so they headed for home. Sleepy little Shrews were making their way back to the pine needle blanket under Blue. Sammy yawned his little Shrew yawn as Mama tucked him into his little nest of pine needles. It had been a wonderful night for Sammy. He could sleep now and dream what all little Shrews dream...making trails in the snow under the moon on a cold winter night.
This little tale just popped into my head as Joe and I were eating breakfast and looking out the big sliding glass doors into our backyard. I saw the trails in the snow and then knew that I had to make up a story to go with them. Balisha