The year Spring came Late

by

Mike Larzelere

 

 

In a far off land where the season’s cycle round and round is a town famous for its spring. Every year the people wait in awe for the rebirth of colorful flowers and the greening of grass and trees that come with the mild rains and gentle breeze. But one year the people noticed the seasons went from a cold blustering winter to a searing hot summer all in a single day. They asked, “Why has our spring stayed away.”

 

At first, the people did not complain. They love their summers for its warm sunny days playing games and swimming and boating and catching a few of the sun’s rays. Yet, summer cannot compare with their spring that brings new life to Springtown every year.

The people of Springtown love their autumn, especially the changing of the colors as the trees dress up to display their colors of red, yellow, orange and brown. Even so, fall cannot compare to stheir spring  that brings new life to Springtown.

The people of Springtown love their winters too, especially the winters that gives the children a day off from school. They love when the snow comes drifting in for sledding and skiing. They love the cold that freezes the ponds for ice fishing and skating, yet even the best winter cannot compare with Springtown’s springtime air.

So, when one year the people found their spring failed to show, they complained to the mayor of the town.

“What happened to our spring?” asked a boy named Gene.

“Yes, Where is our spring, why hasn’t it come,” asked a girl sucking her thumb.

The mayor scratched his bald head, bewildered and said,” I do not know where our spring could be. Where it is is a mystery to me. I am sure our spring cannot be far away. Maybe our spring is lost or has been delalyed.

 

Missing

 

Springtown’s Spring Season

Reward to the person who finds it

If found, call 1.800.springt

 

Dejected, the crowd started to walk away when a soft voice, not very loud, said, “My name is Lisa, and I know what to do. I know who has your spring, and I know where he has hidden it from your view. When he is nice he helps you breathe, but when he is bad he can make you freeze. He is a cloud and he calls himself Mr. Rainman.

“How do you know Mr. Rainman has our spring way up in a cloud?” asked Mary Margaret daughter of Mrs. Dowd.

“I know because I spied on him when the rain was just about to begin. He blew himself in and with one big gasp he swallowed all the rain and then blew himself up high in the sky and hid himself with other clouds.

“How do you suggest we get our spring back? You can’t climb up to a cloud,” said a boy named Mac.

 

“Mr. Rainman will be easy to find because his cloud will be of a different kind. All the clouds around him will be fluffy and white cumulous clouds, and he will be a big dark gray cumulus nimbus cloud.  I can start my search this very day and have your spring back before the sun comes down. So with the permission of her mom and dad, Lisa set out to bring spring back to Springtown.

Carrying her umbrella, for future need, Lisa walked into a field where colorful birds fluttered all around. “Hello Mrs. Bluebird why aren’t you building a nest?” asked Lisa.

“Oh, I am just enjoying this warm sun, while I am waiting for spring to come,” said Mrs. Bluebird.

“Mr. Rainman took spring away and I promised to find and bring it back before the end of the day.

She told Mrs. Bluebird about her quest to find the spring that belongs to Springtown and asked if she would like to come with her to take it back. Mrs. Bluebird agreed to join her, and so they went on their way.

They walked across the field to the edge of wood where large jackrabbit scurried about in and out of her hole. Lisa said, Mrs. Jack Rabbit why aren’t you settled down in your hole where you can tend to your young,” asked Lisa

“Oh, I am just enjoying this warm sun, while I am waiting for spring to come,” said Mrs. Jack Rabbit.

She told Mrs. Jack Rabbit about her quest to find the spring that belongs to Springtown and asked if she would like to come with her to take it back? Mrs. Jack Rabbit agreed to join her, and so Lisa, Mrs. Bluebird, and Mrs. Jack Rabbit went on their way.

They walked deeper into the wood where hidden behind a low branch of thick leaves stood a whitetail deer. Lisa stepped forward and whispered, “Hello Mrs. White Tailed Deer, why aren’t you in your bed tending to your young,”

“Oh, I am just enjoying this warm sun, while I am waiting for spring to come,” said Mrs. White Tailed Deer.

Lisa told Mrs. White Tailed Dear about her quest to find the spring that belongs to Springtown and asked if she would like to come with her to take it back. Mrs. White Tailed Deer agreed to join her. And so Lisa, Mrs. Bluebird, Mrs. Jack Rabbit, and Mrs. White Tailed Deer went on their way.

 

While walking along, Lisa told her new friends, “Mr. Rainman can be very nice. He can bring warm a gentle shower, to away the cold winter ice. Yet, he can be just as mean blowing winds that bring thunder storms, tornadoes and hurricanes. Even though they feared for their life, they all agreed to keep Lisa company and if they had to, protect her. They walked through the wood full of delightful sounds until they came to grassy grounds where rolling hills lay ahead that led to a mountain where the peak lay hidden high in the clouds.

Lisa stopped and warned her friends, “We must climb this mountain up through the clouds. Somewhere in those clouds is where Mr. Rainman hid Springtown’s spring.

 

However, Lisa came prepared. She changed to her rain gear and opened her umbrella, and together with her friends, marched to the top of that mountain without fear. There, in front of their eyes, rested a huge black cloud ready to burst. Lisa, with her three trusty friends, boldly walked right up to that big black cloud and yelled,” Mr. Rainman I know you are there hiding among the other clouds. I know you took the rain that belongs to Springtown, and now I am here to ask for it back.

Lisa cried “Mr. Rainman, whose breath can move a forest of trees, we are here to get Springtown’s Spring, so may we have it please.”

“Mr. Rainman came out of his cloud and in a thundering voice said, “We? Who are we?” Lisa introduced Mrs. Bluebird, Mrs. Jack Rabbit and Mrs. White Tailed Deer to Mr. Rainman.

Lisa huddled with her three trusted friends high on the mountain where inside the cloud a storm brewed. Lightning bolts jumped out followed by a loud boom. Mr. Rainman made himself sound more menacing by bellowing, “Ahh, go tell Springtown they can weep, spring season is now mine to keep.”

However, Lisa came with a plan she knew Mr. Rainman could not resist. She knew Mr. Rainman liked to play games that had a twist.

 

“She asked Mr. Rainman, “Do you like games?”

“Oh dear, Do I like games? I do, I do,” was his quick reply.

“Do you want to play a game with me? Whoever wins gets Springtown’s spring.”

“Oh dear, what should I do?” moaned the Mr. Rainman in his howling voice. “What game is my choice?”

Being a polite little girl, she let him choose. Since he loved board games, word games, and puzzles too, he asked himself, “what’s my favorite game to play?” Turning to Lisa, he said, “We will play a game of riddles.”

`Lisa said, “I like riddles, but I am not very good at solving them.”

Aha! Then I’m sure of a win, he said to himself with a grin

Lisa said, “I will play, but remember if I win you have to give spring back to Springtown.”

Mr. Rainman protested, “Only if your friends play too. And if any of you lose, I win.”

They all agreed to the rules of the game.

Mr. Rainman said, “Let the games begin, who shall be first?

“I am ready for the first riddle,” bravely said Mrs. Blue Bird.

Here’s your riddle, said Mr. Rainman, “Huey’s mother had four children, the first was April, the second was May, and the third was June. What was the name of the fourth child?

Mrs. Blue Bird looked quite confused. Mr. Rainman looked amused. Then Mrs. Blue Bird answered, “I cannot lose, the answer to your riddle is, Huey is the fourth child.”

Mr. Rainman grew irate, saying to himself, Oh, great, I lost round one, this will not do now I must win round two. Turning, to Mrs. Jack Rabbit he said, “Are you ready?”

Mrs. Jack Rabbit, who felt jumpy, said, “I am.” Though her jitters showed she was not.

Mr. Rainman said, “What flattens all mountains, wipes out all species, and turns everything to pieces.

Mrs. Jack Rabbit sat on her haunches thinking the problem through when Mr. Rainman said, “You are taking too much time, you lose.”

Mrs. Jack Rabbit, sprung like coiled spring right up to Mr. Rainman and said, “Mr. Rainman thank you for the clue, the answer to your riddle is Time, because time changes everything.

Mr. Rainman was now feeling at his worst His head felt so swollen he thought it would burst. But he had two more riddles he could win.  So, he turned to Mrs. White Tailed Deer and asked, “Are you ready?”

“I am ready,” said Mrs. White Tailed Deer, though she stood trembling like a hunted deer.

“What is always running but never moves, has no mouth but has powerful roar?”

Mrs. White Tailed Deer thought in her travels through the woods, she’s seen this before. What never moves and has a powerful roar. She thought about all the animals in the forest that roar, and she remembered the bears

Mr. Rainman, thought, this cannot be, I can win riddle number three.

Although Mrs. Mrs. White Tailed Deer looked quite confused, she answered, “I cannot lose, the answer to your question is a waterfall, because a waterfall never moves and it can be heard a long, long ways away.

 

“Oh gee, how can this be? I lost riddles number one, two, and three. I must win riddle number four, or I can’t keep Springtown’s spring anymore,” thundered Mr. Rainman

 

Mr. Rainman, fretfully pacing back and forth.

“Remember our rule, Mr. Rainman, if I win, you lose,” Lisa said boldly.

“And if I win you lose, and I get to keep the spring I stole from Springtown,” refuted Mr. Rainman.

Proud of her friends Lisa thought to herself ‘they came through, now I must too.”

 

“Are you ready?” asked Mr. Rainman. What lives in three different states all at the same time?

Lisa thought her answer through and through,

Standing tall, yet looking weary, Lisa said, “Mr. Rainman, who lives in three different states all at the same time, I am ready, as ready as I can be.”

Mr. Rainman asked What can exist as ice and snow, sleet and hail, can fall as a drizzle, or as a torrential rain, and can evaporate into a gas and condense into a cloud?

 

Mr. Rainman impatiently waited as Lisa studied the mysteries of this riddle, “Ha! Ha! you have no answer, you have no clue, I win the game, you are through. Be off with you now, you are done with your quest. I WON the game, now you must go without protest.”

“But, protest I must, because I have the answer to your riddle,” cried Lisa.

You say you have the answer now, I simply do not see how,” said Mr. Rainman.

“Oh but, I do; and to prove it, I will give the riddle right back to you. It lives in three different states and not Michigan, Missouri, or Montana. The states are a solid, liquid or gas. It travels in circle going round and round what is it?”

 

 

For the first time in his entire life, Mr. Rainman looked baffled, completely confused. He puzzled over the change in the challenge. He knew the answer was the water cycle, and he knew Lisa knew the answer too.

So, with a change of heart, Mr. Rainman accepted his defeat. He said Lisa, “You outwitted me, and you are very smart; now as we agreed, we all must depart.” Lisa go back to Springtown I will follow you there. And on the way I will color the flowers and green the grass and leaves.

Lisa walked with her three friends down the steep mountain path until they came to a loud roar. Mrs. White Tailed Deer said, I know that sound, the mountain stream is moving again, that is the din of the waterfall. Goodbye, Lisa, and Mrs. Jack Rabbit, and thank you Mr. Rainman for making the rain, now I can go home to the waterfall.

 

Mr. Rainman, up in his cloud, took a long, deep breath, and then with the help from his friend the wind sprinkled himself all over the ground everywhere but Springtown.

 

Lisa, Mrs. Jack Rabbit, and Mrs. Bluebird continued down the mountain trail, until they came to the edge of the woods where Lisa first met Mrs. Rabbit scurrying in and out of her rabbit hole.

 

“There is my hole, I must go. I feel children will be coming soon. Goodbye, Lisa and Mrs. Bluebird, and thank you, Mr. Rainman, for bringing back the warm gentle rain showers. Now I can have my family.

 

Lisa walked along with Mrs. Bluebird fluttering by her side and Mr. Rainman hanging low in the sky right behind them until they came within sight of Springtown. They stopped, for something seemed strange. Greenery spread all around from the trees in the woods to grass in the fields. Flowers bloomed in colors of reds, yellows, pink, and violet every where but Springtown. Lisa looked at Springtown still looking withered and

 

Mr. Wind hiding in a dark gray cloud won’t let spring go until he is given permission to rain on somebody’s parade. So Springtown decides to a rainy day parade

But Mr. Wind m am something which cannot be seen

I’m measured on the Beaufort scale

I help to keep a kite in the air

And I am what helps ships to sail

 

Sometimes I am a solid,

Sometimes I am a liquid,

Sometimes I am a gas

I can cycle round and round

You will find me in lakes  swimming and toher times you will find me in frozen lakes for skating,

What am I.

Mr. Rainman, what could exist in three states at once I know ths must be a trick, Notiing can be in Michigan, Ohio, or Wiconsin at the same time, Unless you are talking about Water can be found as a solid, liquid, and gas.

 

I can be very strong

But other times I’m just a breeze

Although you can’t see me

You can see me blow about trees

 

Sometimes I am a gentle breeze

And other times I’m a strong gust

On water I blow sailing ships

And in the desert I blow dust

 

You can often see my effects

Although I am not ever seen

I come after cross, whirl and wood

And come before sock, mill and screen

 

~ust guess the riddles

Weather related riddles

 

 

Animals that help Lisa find Spring.

Mrs. Blue Bird

Mr. Flopped Eared Rabbit

Miss Alpha the Wolf

 

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