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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
You Clumsy Gray Lizard!


Logan was a lizard. He was also a very large lizard and he lived under a rocky ledge, in a small cave that went deep into the earth. It provided shade and kept him hidden from the sun and from wild animals that might stroll by looking for something to eat. Every morning, Logan would come out of his cave and run on the trail he’d made for himself. It meandered through the woods, went down near the river, through reeds, tall grasses, flowers and beautiful blossoming trees until it took him back to his cave.

Clumsy Gray Lizard

Logan had thick, scaly skin, as most lizards do. He was grayish-brown, had four strong, sturdy legs and a long tail that dragged behind him when he walked or ran. One morning as usual, he woke up, stretched, then crawled out from under the rock. He looked up at the sun. He felt very happy as he began to run, as fast as a lizard can run, down the trail that he ran every morning. The sun was just beginning to raise from behind the heather-covered hills, castings its rays on the surrounding land. He started out slowly, but picked up speed as he moved down the trail. At first he passed by a variety of flowers and plants, in fact he was so much admiring the white daisies with lemon yellow centers, that he wasn’t paying any attention to where he was going and crashed right into a rowan tree. He heard a scream and a big thud. He looked over to see Vanora, the sheep, lying on her head, with her arms and legs sticking out to the side. He stood still and watched. Vanora got up, brushed the dirt off of her wool and started yelling at Logan, calling to him, "You clumsy gray lizard!"

Logan apologized and ran down the trail as Vanora brushed more dirt off herself, then walked into the grass to graze. She was feeling very angry with Logan.

Logan ran quickly. He passed near the River and slowed down to watch the cattails swaying in the gentle breeze. He was not watching where he was going. He saw what he thought was a long brown vine hanging down and feeling rather enthused about life, grabbed it to swing over a puddle. Unfortunately, the vine happened to be Moly, the donkey’s tail. Moly was very angry. It hurt her when Logan swung on it.

Logan landed in the dirt on the other side of the puddle. Moly started to yell at him, calling him, "You clumsy gray lizard!" Logan felt bad, apologized and went on his way. He knew he had to be more careful.

He ran up onto the moor. He saw some spiders and a coppery colored snake. He was admiring the way the snake slithered across the hot sand, wasn’t watching where he was going, and ran right on top of Irving, the wild cat’s tail. He felt the thud as he did so. He stopped and saw Irving standing there holding his tail. He was angry with Logan and yelled, "You clumsy gray lizard!" His long beautiful gray tail was bent in half.

Logan began to feel very bad. Two pigeons perched in the tree started cooing and telling him that he should go back to his hole, that nobody wanted him around and that he was a pest and a bother. Logan hung his head down low and slinked off to his cave under the rock. He hid there for a while and didn’t come out, which pleased all the other animals. Nobody missed him.

After a few days he decided that he felt better and went out to run his trail. He decided to go the other direction this time, so he started running. The woods glimmered in the morning sun, its rays catching a drop or two of morning dew and reflecting. One of the reflection rays shone right into Logan’s eyes and he couldn’t see Douglas, the sheepdog, until he’d knocked him flying about ten feet into the air. He landed with a boom on the sand. Dirt got into his eyes, his fur, everywhere. Douglas was angry with Logan. He called him, "You clumsy gray lizard!" and told him to be careful.

As he sulked and walked away from Douglas, he noticed a field of grain up ahead. It was golden brown, swayed gently in the breeze and he knew he wouldn’t get into any trouble there. What he didn’t realize was that every stalk of wheat he brushed by as he walked, he knocked down several grasshoppers. One, named Bonnie, fell right onto Logan’s head. She was very angry with him. Bonnie yelled into his ear, "You clumsy gray lizard!" She told Logan to get out of the grain fields.

So Logan moved on, running down to the riverbank. No sooner had he reached it, when he slipped in the black mud and rolled down into the water. He landed right on Bruce, the trout’s fin, trapping him in the mud. The trout pulled and tugged until his fin was free, then blew bubbles and yelled at Logan, "You clumsy gray lizard!"

Logan stood up, all muddy and ran off down the trail. He felt so bad. He didn’t mean to hit the other animals or bump into them. He had tried to be so careful.

As he was running along, he spotted a beautiful morning dove perched in a willow tree. He looked up at it and didn’t see Andy, the fox, until he’d run over his paws. Andy was furious. He growled at Logan, who became very frightened. He knew foxes sometimes ate lizards, even big ones. Andy held his paws up and yelled at Logan, "You clumsy gray lizard!" as he slinked off towards his rock.

Logan stayed in his cave and didn’t come out, not for days. Nobody missed him, at least not for a long time. A few days later, down at the river, all the animals had gathered to have a drink at the same time. They started talking to each other. Someone mentioned they hadn’t seen Logan. The others said they hadn’t either and they were glad. Bonnie wondered if something was wrong with Logan "What if he is hurt?" she meowed. "We’d better go and find him," she urged.

So they searched in a deep dark cave, they searched in the bushes, they even searched around the fields of heather, but nobody could find Logan. Finally, the fox heard some noises coming out from behind a pile of big rocks. He crawled inside and saw Logan in there, sad looking. He told him to come out. Logan refused.

Douglas went and got the other animals, who were now feeling bad about all the things they’d said to Logan. Irving gathered some daisies because the pigeons told him that Logan had liked those. He took them to his rocks. The others were standing around, coaxing him out. When Logan showed his long, red, flickering tongue, the others were happy and urged him to come out of the boulders. When he did, they all apologized.

Logan promised to be more careful when he ran around the trail and the others said they would be more watchful. From that day on, when they heard Logan coming, they moved out of the way!


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