Thursday, 12 December 2013

The Golden Cobwebs

And Old German Folk Tale

The Christmas tree was all trimmed and ready. It stood safely out of sight in a locked room so the children would not see it before it was time.

Just the same many eyes had seen it, standing there all a-glitter. The great green eyes of the black cat had seen it. The blue eyes of the white kitten had seen it. The brown eyes of the brown dog had seen it. And the bright eyes of the canary had seen it.

But all around the house, in the warm corners of the attic, and the dark cool corners of the cellar, and behind the basket of wood near the fireplace, and under the leaf of the plant on the window-sill, and in a crack in the floor behind the umbrella-stand in the hallway - were many, many eyes that had not seen the Christmas tree.

They were the eyes of the little gray spiders, and the little black spiders, and the medium-size brown spiders, and one large orange-and-black spider - a friendly fellow who had gotten into the house by mistake one day last summer and liked it so well he decided to spend the winter.

For a long time now, the spiders had been looking forward to seeing the Christmas tree. But suddenly a great cleaning-up had started all over the house. The big hard broom came flying into corners. The dustcloth flicked furiously everywhere. The scrub-brush went in wet circles across the floor, dripping water into all the cracks. The house was being made clean and shining for the birthday of the Christ Child. And the spiders had to run for their very lives!

The spiders huddled together behind a rafter to talk the whole thing over. Now spiders, as you know, like to see everything, and know just exactly what is going on. Most especially they wanted to see the beautiful Christmas tree.

Suddenly, the little black spider had an idea:

"Let's ask the Christ Child to help us," he said.

"Do you think...?" said the little gray spider.

"Might it be...?" said the medium-sized brown spider.

"But of course He will," said the big orange-and-black spider who knew more about the outside world than the others did.

So the spiders went together to see the Christ Child.

"Dear Christ Child," they said, the little voices and the big voices speaking all at once. "You have seen our webs. You know we love beautiful things. More than anything in the world we want to see the Christmas tree. But we dare not go into the room. The broom and the mop and the dustcloth would be after us if we went anywhere near."

The Christ Child felt sorry for the spiders. So when the family was all away on the day before Christmas, He called to them and told them to go on and look and look and look as long as they liked.

Down the stairway from the attic they came creeping. Up the stairway from the cellar they came creeping. Out of the cracks in the floors, and from under the leaves of the plants, and from behind the woodbasket near the fireplace, and along the walls, and down the halls, they came creeping.

Ever so quietly they came - the little gray spiders, and the little black spiders, and the medium-sized brown spiders. (The big orange-and-black spider had to roll around in some soot in the cellar before he could join the procession, for the other spiders were afraid he was so big and so bright someone might see him coming or going)

When all the spiders came to the Christmas tree, they stood around it in a circle and looked and looked and looked. They had never seen anything half so lovely. Then, altogether they went toward it. They had to see every single bit, every green branch, every tiny sparkling twig, every decoration.

Up and down, in and out, the spiders crept. From trunk to starry tip they went, looking, so that as lon gas they lived they would never forget. They stayed until they had seen all there was to see, you may be sure.

Then, quietly, happily, they went away - back to all their little hiding places.

In the still darkness just before the dawn of Christmas day the Christ Child came to bless the tree for the children. Bit when He looked at it - WHAT DO YOU SUPPOSE? It was covered from its highest branch to its lowest twig with COBWEBS! The silken threads were everywhere, looped in and out and all over the Christmas tree. What could the Christ Child do?He knew that the mother would be very unhappy to see the Christmas tree covered with cobwebs. So He lifted His hand...and turned the cobwebs to gold. Though it was still dark outside it was as if a thousand sunbeams glittered among the branches. And that is the way the Christmas tree came to have golden cobwebs on it.

No comments:

Post a Comment