Night came on and wrapped the country in obscurity, and in the distance, in a meadow, he saw a dark spot on the grass; it was a cow, and so he got over the ditch by the roadside and went up to her without exactly knowing what he was doing. When he got close to her she raised her great head to him, and he thought: "If I only had a jug I could get a little milk."
Birds like the rook, which fed upon worms, were nearly starved, and were driven far and wide for strange food. It was pitiable to see them trying to pick the soil of the meadow as hard as a rock. The everlasting glare was worse than the gloom of winter, and the sense of universal parching thirst became so distressing that the house was preferred to the fields. We were close to a water famine!
WHAT is the earliest thing you can remember? Master Meadow Mouse's earliest memory was of lying in a soft nest of dried grasses. Sometimes the nest was in inky darkness; and then it was night. Sometimes a shaft of light fell upon the nest through a round hole just above his head; and then it was daytime. That round hole went upwards straight upwards for about a foot.
He was particularly successful with the idiot Feklusha, seated in a cavern with her bust in the shade, and the light on her wild hair; he had not the patience nor the skill to finish bust, hands and feet. How could anybody be expected to sit still all the morning, when the sun was shedding its rays so gaily and so generously on stream and meadow?
Ascending its bank, in about a quarter of a mile one found it issuing out of a lovely little meadow, through which it meandered crookedly, its course marked out by willow bushes. The meadow was Sam's objective. He had often been there before. It was about a quarter of a mile long, and no more than a good stone's throw across from pines to pines.
But there was no water here, and that jump took him right out where anybody passing could see him. Then he turned around to see who had startled him so. It was Danny Meadow Mouse. "I won't go back to the Smiling Pool until I have seen the Great World," replied Grandfather Frog gruffly.
Early in the second spring of my sojourn at the farm it was decided to build a large unitary building on the high ground, almost directly in front of the Eyry, though at some distance from it, on the eastern verge of the slope facing the meadow, and nearly in line with the distant town road. It was late when the preparations were concluded and the work was commenced.
If I told you once, I told you twenty times, that I had seen the bird on three distinct occasions in the meadow below Reel's mill; and you each time threw your jacksnipe theory in my face. To-day I marked him down in the bare ground outside Haveldon wood, then ran at full speed up to the jager, and offered him five shillings if he would come down and shoot the bird I showed him.
He then walked in a most leisurely way to the gate that led into the meadow whose eastern boundary was Hope's quick-set hedge, and he came in the same leisurely way up to Mr. Bartley, and leaned his back, with his hands behind him, with perfect effrontery, against the palings. "I know all," said he. "I overheard you in your office fourteen years ago, when you changed children with Hope."
Then as deer or calves in the season of Spring leap along the meadow, when they have had their fill of pasture, so lightly they kilted up the folds of their lovely kirtles, and ran along the hollow chariot-way, while their hair danced on their shoulders, in colour like the crocus flower.