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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Make Hay While the Sun Shines" (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (03/06/08)

TITLE: Twiddly Dee
By Teresa Hollums


Twiddly Dee

Just what am I supposed to do with this seed? Twiddly Dee looked at his bright kernel of corn. I know mom said for me to not eat it because, if I planted it, we could all eat lots more than just one seed. How could we all enjoy lots more of this one seed? I really don’t understand. I guess I’m supposed to be a farmer mouse? How in the world did Mom ever get the idea that I was a farmer mouse? Why I’d rather be a fatter mouse right now than to wait through the winter being a skinnier mouse. And the teenager mice, Twiddly Dee, continued to debate and twiddle his tiny paws.

Then he began his usual normal litany of excuses. I am quite sure that mom won’t mind if I just wait for her to come and tell me exactly how to do this just right. I think I’ll just sit here and take a small nap and then play a bit. Surely she wanted me to be more prepared and ready than this. Surely she will finally realize that someone better at farming than me will do this. There are lots of mice who can do exactly what she wants. Besides, she is never pleased with what I do

And so the month passed by when planting would have been perfect. His mom had to be gone much longer than she had planned. The sun shone and the rains came. That summer was a perfect setting. Any corn plant would have certainly grown and flourished. Instead, the corn kernel lay now hidden under several piles of dirty clothes that Twiddly Dee had also forgotten to be responsible enough to wash. There also were his books of how to be a great farmer mouse totally under an inch of dust. Neglect hung over the tiny mouse’s room. But Twiddly Dee just knew in his own time that all would be put just right and, and, anyway, he just was positive that his mom would eventually just give up on him.

The summer passed and then the cold winter began to usher in fall. With the change to cold, his mom finally came home exhausted due to being needed by her failing mother in her hometown far away. How glad I am to be finally home. I do hope Twiddly Dee has been faithful to do all I asked of him. I am getting tired of having to be the only adult in this tiny house.

“Oh, Twiddly Dee—Twiddly—where are you?” Widow Dee mouse called even louder, “I’m home!”

“Oh, Oh, mom, how very glad I am to see you! It is so good to have you home!” And Twiddly Dee gave her a big hug. Then they began to catch up on all the news of Grandmother who was now doing better. They once again shared smiles and laughter and felt the joy of being together.

Finally, Widow Dee made it up the stairs to open Twiddly Dee’s room. In her heart she knew that maybe her son would not be able to do without her exact presence, but she hoped against hope that he had managed to do what he should have done—plant the seed she had given him. She opened the door and her face fell. A great big tear fell down her face as she removed the pile of dirty clothes and finally held in her hand the unplanted kernel of corn.

“Oh, oh, Twiddly Dee, what have you done?” She walked back down stairs with a heavy heart full of disappointment. Widow Dee looked at her son, accusingly, holding out the unplanted corn. “Twiddly Dee, just look at this great gift that I entrusted to you to plant and water and make more for us to harvest next year. Now it’s too late. It’s just too late.”

And we, like Twiddly, may still be twiddling our thumbs about doing what we know God wants us to do right now. God still convicts and God still needs us to use the gifts he has given us within his timing, not our own.

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This article has been read 544 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 03/14/08
Sweet little story! I don't think you need the lesson in the last paragraph. You've written your story well--trust your writing and your readers. They'll get it.
Sally Hanan03/15/08
Cute story. I agree about the last paragraph. I think that to have the reader feel more connected, it would help to either keep the story entirely from the mouse's point of view or from the mother's. That way you can stay truer to the genre you are writing for.
Debbie Wistrom03/15/08
I loved how you made me relate your lazy teenager to others I have known. Very creative on the names of your mice.
Holly Westefeld03/16/08
A very nice allegory/parable, and nice use of anthropomorphism.
I agree with the others about the last paragraph.
I think your third person, omniscient narrator worked just fine.
Patty Wysong03/17/08
Cute story with a good lesson tucked in.