Buttercup Gold and Other Stories

by Ellen Robena Field

“Mother Nature’s House Cleaning”

Additional Information
  • Year Published: 1894
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: United States of America
  • Source: Field, E.R. (1894) Buttercup Gold and Other Stories Bangor: C. H. Glass
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 7.0
  • Word Count: 400
  • Genre: Fairy Tale/Folk Tale
  • Keywords: 19th century literature, children's literature, short stories
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One morning Mother Nature stood at the door of her house looking out over the world. King Winter’s reign was over and he had gone back to his home at the North Pole; and Spring was coming over the hill with her three little helpers to make Mother Nature a visit.

Let us see who these helpers were. First there was roguish March with his rosy cheeks, and his curly hair flying in the winds that blew all about him. Next came Baby April with her apron full of violets, daffodillies, and green grasses. Part of the time she smiled sweetly, and part of it she frowned till the big teardrops chased each other down her cheeks. Last came May, playing tag with the sunbeams, wandering knee-deep in flowers, and calling to the birds that sang around her:

Mother Nature watched them coming and murmured, “Such a dirty world as King Winter has left behind him! It must be cleaned up before the little girls, April and May, come, but March I am sure will want to help me do it.”

She beckoned to the frolicsome boy who came racing down the hill to see what she wanted. “I must have some rain to wash away all this dirty snow,” she said; so March whistled to the East Wind, who blew together the rain-clouds, and soon the tiny rain drops were busy at work washing the floors of the world, and in a short time the snow was all gone. Then Mother Nature wanted the sky ceilings cleaned, so this time March whistled to the West Wind who began to sweep away the cloud cobwebs from the sky till the cheery old sun smiled again, and shone Mother Nature a bright “good morning.”

“Now March,” said she, “there is one more thing you can do to help. You must start the work for Baby April.” Then March, with the South Wind to help him, awoke the seeds, whispered to the trees to begin to bud, started the brooks singing, and called the robins back from the South.

When his visit was over Mother Nature thanked him for helping her so well on all of the thirty-one days he had spent with her, and told him she would send for him again when her next cleaning day came around.