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Compilation of Nursery Rhymes

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Poetry
Nursery Rhymes

Most children love being told nursery rhymes. Many of the nursery rhymes that we have read to our children have their origins in British history. Rhymes were written for many different reasons. Some rhymes were written to honor a particular local event that has since been forgotten, while others were written to express feelings of love. Rhymes were also used to hide real meanings, such as when someone wanted to express displeasure toward the government or the sovereign without being executed. Another reason for rhymes is that they’re easy to remember, and therefore could be spread by word-of-mouth—an essential feature for a large population of people who could not read or write. So here are some of many nursery rhymes that have been written:

Jack be Nimble
(aka Jack b Nimble)
Jack be nimble
Jack be quick
Jack jump over
The candlestick.

Little Tommy Tucker
Little Tommy Tucker sings for his supper,
What shall we give him? Brown bread and butter.
How shall he cut it without a knife?
How shall he marry without a wife?

The Grand old Duke of York
The Grand old Duke of York he had ten thousand men
He marched them up to the top of the hill
And he marched them down again.
When they were up, they were up
And when they were down, they were down
And when they were only halfway up
They were neither up nor down.

Diddle Diddle Dumpling
Diddle, diddle, dumpling, my son John,
Went to bed with his trousers on;
One shoe off, and one shoe on,
Diddle, diddle, dumpling, my son John!

Lucy Lockett
Lucy Locket lost her pocket,
Kitty Fisher found it;
Not a penny was there in it,
Only ribbon round it.

Limericks

A five-line humorous poem with characteristic rhythm, often dealing with a risqué subject and typically opening with a line such as “There was a young lady called Jenny,” Lines one, two, and five rhyme with each other and have three metrical feet, and lines three and four rhyme with each other and have two metrical feet. |

Limericks Examples:

There once was a nice Easter bunny
He hopped around looking very funny
He injured his leg
While hiding an egg
Then he didn't feel very sunny

There once was an ape in a zoo
Who looked out through the bars and saw YOU!
Do you think it's fair
To give poor apes a scare?
I think it's a mean thing to do.

There once was a hunter named Paul
Who strangled nine grizzlies one Fall.
Nine is such a good score,
So he tried for one more
But he lost. Well, you can't win them all!

Poetry for Kids

Didactic Poem

Didactic Poetry is instructional poetry. The poet expected the reader to learn skills, science, philosophy, love, crafts etc. from didactic verses. Hesiod is considered the first didactic poet.didactic poetry was usually written in the dactylic hexameters of epic poetry, even when the purpose was humorous. It was not considered its own genre.

Hot Dog Paradox 20 boys ate a hot dog Which was a simple thing to do I’m confused I only want the truth Did 20 boys eat the same (1) hot dog as clearly mentioned above? Did 20 boys eat their own individual hot dog, (20 hot dogs), also clearly stated? Only one hot dog was eaten at a time And so defined 20 boys ate a hot dog I don't see how or why I’m glad it wasn't mine Don’t ask me what the girls ate Or I’ll go blind

CLUELESS

Guilty or not, yet it hurts to break the rhythm. I thought I had got the right clue. No never, I was wrong. I always hear them in their witness box. Not to tell the truth, but to fabricate one. Pieces of misinformation vow to make us wise. Right or wrong, pleasant or irked, it remains all the same. So I scream all day long, along with the running foot falls. Along with all our ancestors dead or forgotten. Alone in my hole, with fried dreams and drinking stale hopes. Somewhere between the lines lies false prides to sing along. Voice and the texture of history ever remain the same. To crack a joke besides our witness box. Sometimes the rhythm sinks, Or sometimes we feel badly beaten. Guilty or not, yet it hurts or break the rhythm. Rhythm you believe makes you noble. Gives you the key to unlock the heaven. Guilty or not, it pays no dividend.

Narrative Poem

Narrative poetry gives a verbal representation, in verse, of a sequence of connected events, it propels characters through a plot. It is always told by a narrator. Narrative poems might tell of a love story (like Tennyson's Maud), the story of a father and son (like Wordsworth's Michael) or the deeds of a hero or heroine (likeWalter Scott's Lay of the Last Minstrel).

The goose I knew an old wife lean and poor, Her rags scarce held together;
There strode a stranger to the door, And it was windy weather.

He held a goose upon his arm, He utter'd rhyme and reason,
"Here, take the goose, and keep you warm, It is a stormy season."

She caught the white goose by the leg, A goose--'twas no great matter.
The goose let fall a golden egg With cackle and with clatter.

She dropt the goose, and caught the pelf, And ran to tell her neighbours;
And bless'd herself, and cursed herself, And rested from her labours.

And feeding high, and living soft, Grew plump and able-bodied;
Until the grave churchwarden doff'd, The parson smirk'd and nodded.

So sitting, served by man and maid, She felt her heart grow prouder:
But, ah! the more the white goose laid It clack'd and cackled louder.

It clutter'd here, it chuckled there; It stirr'd the old wife's mettle:
She shifted in her elbow-chair, And hurl'd the pan and kettle.

"A quinsy choke thy cursed note!" Then wax'd her anger stronger.
"Go, take the goose, and wring her throat, I will not bear it longer."

Then yelp'd the cur, and yawl'd the cat; Ran Gaffer, stumbled Gammer.
The goose flew this way and flew that, And fill'd the house with clamour.

As head and heels upon the floor They flounder'd all together,
There strode a stranger to the door, And it was windy weather:

He took the goose upon his arm, He utter'd words of scorning;
"So keep you cold, or keep you warm, It is a stormy morning."

The wild wind rang from park and plain, And round the attics rumbled,
Till all the tables danced again, And half the chimneys tumbled.

The glass blew in, the fire blew out, The blast was hard and harder.
Her cap blew off, her gown blew up, And a whirlwind clear'd the larder:

And while on all sides breaking loose Her household fled the danger,
Quoth she, "The Devil take the goose, And God forget the stranger!"

Lord Tennyson.

A sailor’s yarn
This is the tale that was told to me,
By a battered and shattered son of the sea--
To me and my messmate, Silas Green,
When I was a guileless young marine.

"'Twas the good ship Gyascutus, All in the China seas,
With the wind a-lee and the capstan free To catch the summer breeze.

"'Twas Captain Porgie on the deck, To his mate in the mizzen hatch,
While the boatswain bold, in the forward hold, Was winding the larboard watch.

"'Oh, how does our good ship head to-night! How heads our gallant craft?'
'Oh, she heads to the E. S. W. by N., And the binnacle lies abaft!'

"'Oh, what does the quadrant indicate, And how does the sextant stand?'
'Oh, the sextant's down to the freezing point, And the quadrant's lost a hand!'

"'Oh, and if the quadrant has lost a hand, And the sextant falls so low,
It's our bodies and bones to Davy Jones This night are bound to go!

"'Oh, fly aloft to the garboard strake! And reef the spanker boom;
Bend a studding sail on the martingale, To give her weather room.

"'Oh, boatswain, down in the for'ard hold What water do you find?'
'Four foot and a half by the royal gaff And rather more behind!'

"'Oh, sailors, collar your marline spikes And each belaying pin;
Come stir your stumps, and spike the pumps, Or more will be coming in!'

"They stirred their stumps, they spiked the pumps, They spliced the mizzen brace;
Aloft and alow they worked, but oh! The water gained apace.

"They bored a hole above the keel To let the water out;
But, strange to say, to their dismay, The water in did spout.

"Then up spoke the Cook, of our gallant ship, And he was a lubber brave:
'I have several wives in various ports, And my life I'd orter save.'

"Then up spoke the Captain of Marines, Who dearly loved his prog:
'It's awful to die, and it's worse to be dry, And I move we pipe to grog.'

"Oh, then 'twas the noble second mate What filled them all with awe;
The second mate, as bad men hate, And cruel skipper's jaw.

"He took the anchor on his back, And leaped into the main;
Through foam and spray he clove his way, And sunk and rose again!

"Through foam and spray, a league away The anchor stout he bore;
Till, safe at last, he made it fast And warped the ship ashore!

"'Taint much of a job to talk about, But a ticklish thing to see,
And suth'in to do, if I say it, too, For that second mate was me!"

Such was the tale that was told to me
By that modest and truthful son of the sea,
And I envy the life of a second mate,
Though captains curse him and sailors hate,
For he ain't like some of the swabs I've seen,
As would go and lie to a poor marine.

James Jeffrey Roche.

Simple Lyric
Poem

Simple Lyric Poetry is a comparatively short, non-narrative poem in which a single speaker presents a state of mind or an emotional state. Lyric poetry retains some of the elements of song which is said to be its origin: For Greek writers the lyric was a song accompanied by the lyre.

River Laps Softly

The ripples of water lap onto river's edge quietly I sit, a man seeking love
The orange twilight stirs my lonely soul near, lonely call of a single dove
A sweet place where river moans and churns fish splash about in a soft replay
Of continuance as the world slowly turns colors splash endings to this day
The smell is that of fish , water and mud cool air spreads its soft relief
Comfort reaches to stop anger in my blood as Nature gifts a calming belief
Soon it is quiet and knowledge enters my soul
Victory came because I waited to make it so

High on life Freshman year was a breakout year for me, I maintained a positive attitude. This was someone I did not used to be, Through that year I gained so much gratitude. Year two was by far the year of heartbreaks, A lot of my family members had died. I was so mentally messed up it aches, When Darion had passed I sat and cried. Junior year was the best year of my life, I pulled off the best grades in my career. Even though it gave me a lot of strife, I wanted to kick back and sip a beer. Senior year is coming to an end quick, Cannot wait to laugh and share one last pic.
When I stop and pray

When the storm clouds boil around me,
And the lightning splits the sky--.
When the howling wind assails me,
And life's sea is rolling high--
When my heart is filled with terror,
And my fears, I can't allay--
Then I find sweet peace and comfort,
When I simply stop and pray.

When the things of life confound me,
And my faith is ebbing low--
When my trusted friends betray me,
And my heart is aching so--
When the night seems black and endless,
And I long for light of day--
Then I find a silver dawning,
When I simply stop and pray.

There are things beyond the heavens
I can't begin to understand,
But I know that God is living,
And I know He holds my hand.
Yes, I know He watches o'er me
All the night and all the day--
And He's always there to hear me
When I simply stop and pray.

Prose
Folk tales

Folktale, general term for any of numerous varieties of traditional narrative. The telling of stories appears to be a cultural universal, common to primitive and complex societies alike. Even the forms folktales take are demonstrably similar from culture to culture, and comparative studies of themes and narrative techniques have been successful in showing these relationships.

How Sun, Moon, and Wind went out to Dinner
One day Sun, Moon, and Wind went out to dine with their uncle and aunts Thunder and Lightning. Their mother (one of the most distant Stars you see far up in the sky) waited alone for her children's return.

Now both Sun and Wind were greedy and selfish. They enjoyed the great feast that had been prepared for them, without a thought of saving any of it to take home to their mother—but the gentle Moon did not forget her. Of every dainty dish that was brought round, she placed a small portion under one of her beautiful long finger-nails, that Star might also have a share in the treat.
On their return, their mother, who had kept watch for them all night long with her little bright eye, said, "Well, children, what have you brought home for me?" Then Sun (who was eldest) said, "I have brought nothing home for you. I went out to enjoy myself with my friends—not to fetch a dinner for my mother!" And Wind said, "Neither have I brought anything home for you, mother. You could hardly expect me to bring a collection of good things for you, when I merely went out for my own pleasure." But Moon said, "Mother, fetch a plate, see what I have brought you." And shaking her hands she showered down such a choice dinner as never was seen before.
Then Star turned to Sun and spoke thus, "Because you went out to amuse yourself with your friends, and feasted and enjoyed yourself, without any thought of your mother at home—you shall be cursed. Henceforth, your rays shall ever be hot and scorching, and shall burn all that they touch. And men shall hate you, and cover their heads when you appear."
(And that is why the Sun is so hot to this day.)
Then she turned to Wind and said, "You also who forgot your mother in the midst of your selfish pleasures—hear your doom. You shall always blow in the hot dry weather, and shall parch and shrivel all living things. And men shall detest and avoid you from this very time."
(And that is why the Wind in the hot weather is still so disagreeable.)
But to Moon she said, "Daughter, because you remembered your mother, and kept for her a share in your own enjoyment, from henceforth you shall be ever cool, and calm, and bright. No noxious glare shall accompany your pure rays, and men shall always call you 'blessed.'"
(And that is why the moon's light is so soft, and cool, and beautiful even to this day).

The Elephants Nose
Many years ago, it is said, that elephants had small trunks with stubbed noses. One year, it did not rain for many months. The ponds and lakes began to dry up, and the streams had very little water. All the animals in the forest were very thirsty, and desperately searching for a source of water. A river used to flow not very far away from the forest, and an elephant decided to go there in search of water.

Walking slowly, he reached the river. There lived a bright green crocodile in the river. As he saw the elephant, he cried, "Go away! Water is already scarce here. If you start drinking, what will be left for me?" The elephant knew it was a risk to pick a fight with the crocodile. So, he decided to come back to the river when the crocodile would be sleeping.

In the same river, there also lived a shiny green toad. Whenever the crocodile would be swimming across the river, the toad would hop onto his back and enjoy a ride. Over time, the crocodile was annoyed with giving free rides to the toad. Many times, he had tried to shake the toad off his back, but in vain. "Hahaha!" the toad would laugh.

One day, the crocodile was resting on a rock. Finding this to be a good opportunity, the elephant went to the river silently and began to drink water. Just then, the toad jumped onto the crocodile's back, disturbing his slumber. The crocodile was irritated! He began to swim around the river and shake his body violently. "Now, I shall get rid of you!" he cried at the toad. But, the toad was unmoved.

Suddenly, the crocodile noticed the elephant. "How dare you drink from my river when you were told not to?" he cried. Unable to get rid of the toad, the crocodile decided to vent all his anger on the elephant. He caught the elephant's trunk and began to pull him into the river. The poor elephant started to pull back, crying, "Let go of me....please! Let go of me....my nose hurts!" But the crocodile showed no mercy. Then, with a mighty jerk, the elephant succeeded in freeing his trunk from the crocodile. But, in tug of war, the elephant's nose had become really long! Angry, the elephant sucked all the water from the river. Then, he sucked some mud and sprayed it on the crocodile and the toad. Since then, it is said, elephants have had long trunks, andcrocodiles and toads are not bright green anymore.

How the First Head Was Taken (Igorot)

One day the Moon, who was a woman named Kabigat, sat out in the yard making a large copper pot. The copper was still soft and pliable like clay, and the woman squatted on the ground with the heavy pot against her knees while she patted and shaped it.
Now while she was working a son of Cal-chal, the Sun, came by and stopped to watch her mold the form. Against the inside of the jar she pressed a stone, while on the outside with a wooden paddle dripping with water she pounded and slapped until she had worked down the bulges and formed a smooth surface.
The boy was greatly interested in seeing the jar grow larger, more beautiful, and smoother with each stroke, and he stood still for some time. Suddenly the Moon looked up and saw him watching her. Instantly she struck him with her paddle, cutting off his head.
Now the Sun was not near, but he knew as soon as the Moon had cut off his son's head. And hurrying to the spot, he put the boy's head back on, and he was alive again.
Then the Sun said to the Moon, "You cut off my son's head, and because you did this, ever after on the earth people will cut off each other's heads.

Fables

Fable is a literary genre. A fable is a succinct fictional story, in prose or verse, that features animals, mythical creatures, plants, inanimate objects or forces of nature which are anthropomorphized (given human qualities such as verbal communication), and that illustrates or leads to an interpretation of a moral lesson (a "moral"), which may at the end be added explicitly in a pithy maxim.
A fable differs from a parable in that the latter excludes animals, plants, inanimate objects, and forces of nature as actors that assume speech and other powers of humankind.

The Bat and the Weasels

A Bat who fell upon the ground and was caught by a Weasel pleaded to be spared his life. The Weasel refused, saying that he was by nature the enemy of all birds. The Bat assured him that he was not a bird, but a mouse, and thus was set free. Shortly afterwards the Bat again fell to the ground and was caught by another Weasel,whom he likewise entreated not to eat him. The Weasel said that he had a special hostility to mice. The Bat assured him that he was not a mouse, but a bat, and thus a second time escaped.

It is wise to turn circumstances to good account.

The Sick Lion

A Lion, unable from old age and infirmities to provide him with food by force, resolved to do so by artifice. He returned to his den, and lying down there, pretended to be sick, taking care that his sickness should be publicly known. The beasts expressed their sorrow, and came one by one to his den, where the Lion devoured them. After many of the beasts had thus disappeared, the Fox discovered the trick and presenting himself to the Lion, stood on the outside of the cave, at a respectful distance, and asked him how he was. "I am very middling," replied the Lion, "but why do you stand without? Pray enter within to talk with me." "No, thank you," said the Fox. "I notice that there are many prints of feet entering your cave, but I see no trace of any returning."
He is wise who is warned by the misfortunes of others.

The Mouse, the Frog, and the Hawk

A Mouse who always lived on the land, by an unlucky chance formed an intimate acquaintance with a Frog, who lived for the most part in the water. The Frog, one day intent on mischief, bound the foot of the Mouse tightly to his own. Thus joined together, the Frog first of all led his friend the Mouse to the meadow where they were accustomed to find their food. After this, he gradually led him towards the pool in which he lived, until reaching the very brink, he suddenly jumped in, dragging the Mouse with him. The Frog enjoyed the water amazingly, and swam croaking about, as if he had done a good deed. The unhappy Mouse was soon suffocated by the water, and his dead body floated about on the surface, tied to the foot of the Frog. A Hawk observed it, and, pouncing upon it with his talons, carried it aloft. The Frog, being still fastened to the leg of the Mouse, was also carried off a prisoner, and was eaten by the Hawk.

Myths

Myth is a traditional or legendary story, usually concerning some being or hero or event, with or without a determinable basis of fact or a natural explanation, especially one that is concerned with deities or demigods and explains some practice, rite, or phenomenon of nature.

The Visayan Creation

Visayan is the largest ethnic group in Philippines. Their creation myth explains how the Sun, the Moon, the islands, and human beings were formed.
A long time ago, there were two Gods - Maguayan, ruler of water, and Kaptan, ruler of the sky. One day, the two Gods decided to marry their children. Three sons were born from this union - Likalibutan was extremely brave and strong, Liadlao was made of gold and was always cheerful, and Libulan, made of copper, was timid and weak. Lisuga was the only daughter, she was made of silver and was very beautiful, gentle and sweet. Sadly, they were orphaned at a young age, but their grandparents took care of them and protected them from evil. Eventually, the siblings grew up to be strong and beautiful.
Kaptan, Kaptan
One day, Likalibutan, proud of his strength and power, decided to attack Kaptan's sky kingdom. Scared of their brother, Liadlao and Libulan were coerced into joining him and they left for the sky kingdom. An enormous steel gate was blocking their way, but Likalibutan summoned the wind and knocked it down. When Kaptan came to know of this, he got furious and fired them with lightning bolts. A lightning bolt landed on each of the three brothers. Likalibutan's rock-like body fragmented into a thousand pieces and fell down in the sea, Liadlao and Libulan melted into balls of gold and copper, respectively. Worried for her brothers, Lisuga came searching for them, but Kaptan, still fuming, attacked her as well. Her silver body too, was scattered into a million pieces. Kaptan then called Maguayan, accusing him of planning the whole thing. But Maguayan had been sleeping through the entire ordeal and didn't have the slightest clue. Kaptan eventually calmed down, and both the gods deeply mourned the loss of their grandchildren. Sadly, even with all their powers, they couldn't bring the siblings to life. So, they gave each of them light, except for Likalibutan. Luminous with this light, Liadlao became the Sun, Libulan, the Moon and Lisuga's fragmented body can be seen today as the stars.
Kaptan planted a seed on a fragment of Likalibutan's body. A bamboo tree sprouted out of this seed and from this tree, Sikalak, a man and Sikabay, a woman, emerged. This man and woman are the ancestors of all the people in the world.

Zeus, King of the Gods
In the northern part of Greece there was a very high mountain called Mount Olympus; so high that during almost all the year its top was covered with snow, and often, too, it was wrapped in clouds. Its sides were very steep, and covered with thick forests of oak and beech trees.

The Greeks thought that the palaces of their gods were above the top of this mountain, far out of the reach of men, and hidden from their sight by the clouds. Here they thought that the gods met together in a grand council hall, and held great feasts, at which they talked over the affairs of the whole world.

Zeus, who ruled over the land and the air, was the king of the gods, and was the greatest and strongest among them. The strength of all the other gods put together could not overcome him. It was he who caused the clouds to form, and who sent the rain to refresh the thirsty earth. His great weapon was the thunderbolt, which he carried in his right hand. But the thunderbolt was seldom used, for the frown and angry nod of Zeus were enough to shake the palaces of the gods themselves.

Although Zeus was so powerful, he was also king and generous to those who pleased him. The people who lived upon the earth loved as well as feared him, and called him father. He was the most just of all the gods. Once when there was a great war between the Greeks and another people, all the other gods took sides, and tried to help those whom they favored all they could. But Zeus did not. He tried to be just, and at last he gave the victory to the side which he thought deserved to have it.

The oak was thought to be sacred to Zeus because it was the strongest and grandest of all the trees. In one part of Greece there was a forest of these, which was called the forest of Dodona. It was so thick and that the sunbeams scarcely found their way through the leaves to the moss upon the ground. Here the wind made strange low sounds among the knotted branches, and people soon began to think that this was their great god Zeus speaking to men through the leaves of his favorite tree So they set this forest apart as sacred to him; and only his servants, who were called priests, were allowed to live in it. People came to this place from all parts of Greece to ask the advice of the god; and the priests would consult with him, and hear his answers in the murmuring of the wind among the branches.

The Greeks also built beautiful temples for their gods, as we build churches. To these temples they brought rich gifts of gold and silver and other precious things, to show how thankful they were for the help which the gods gave them. In each temple there was a great block of marble called the altar, and on this a small fire was often kept burning by the priests. If anyone wished to get the help of one of the gods, he would bring a dove, or a goat, or an ox to the temple, so that the priests might kill it, and burn part of its flesh as an offering. For they thought that the smell of the burning flesh pleased the gods.

Since Zeus was the greatest of the gods, many of the most beautiful temples in Greece were built in his honor. A part of one of these temples to Zeus is still standing, and you can see it if you ever go to Greece. It was made of the finest white marble, and was surrounded on all sides by rows of tall columns beautifully carved.

In another temple there was a great statue of Zeus, made of ivory and gold. It was over sixty feet high, and showed the god seated on a great throne which was covered with carving. The robe of the god was of solid gold. But it was the face of the statue which the Greeks though was most wonderful. It was so grand and beautiful that they said: "Either the sculptor must have gone up into heaven and seen Zeus upon his throne, or the god must have come down to earth and shown his face to the artist."

Besides building temples for their gods, the Greeks held great festivals in their honor also. The greatest of these festivals was the one which was held in honor of Zeus at a place called Olympia. Every four years messengers would go about from town to town to give notice of it. Then all wars would cease, and people from all over Greece would come to Olympia to worship the god. There they would find the swiftest runners racing for a wreath of olive leaves as a prize. There they would also find chariot races and wrestling matches and other games. The Greeks believed that Zeus and the other gods loved to see men using their strength and skill to do them honor at their festivals. So for months and months beforehand men practiced for these games; and the one who gained the victory in them was looked upon as ever after the favorite of gods and men.

Pygmalion and Galatea

Pygmalion’s mind oscillated between doubt and joy. Fearing he may be mistaken, again and again with a lover’s ardor he touches the object of his hopes.
It was indeed alive! The veins when pressed yielded to the finger and again resumed their roundness.
Slowly it dawned on Pygmalion that the animation of his sculpture was the result of his prayer to Goddess Aphrodite who knew his desire. At last, the votary of Aphrodite found words to thank the goddess. Pygmalion humbled himself at the Goddess’ feet. Soon Pygmalion and Galatea were wed, and Pygmalion never forgot to thank Aphrodite for the gift she had given him.
Aphrodite blessed the nuptials she had formed, and this union between Pygmalion and Galatea produced a son named Paphos, from whom the city of Paphos in Cyprus (this city was sacred to Aphrodite), received its name.
Pygmalion and Galatea brought gifts to her temple throughout their life and Aphrodite blessed them with happiness and love in return.
The unusual love that blossomed between Pygmalion and Galatea enthralls all. Falling in love with one’s creation and then getting the desired object as wife- perhaps this was destined for Pygmalion.
Even to this day, countless people and young lovers are mesmerized by this exceptional love that existed between two persons at a time when civilization was in its infancy.

Legends

A legend (Latin, legenda, "things to be read") is a narrative of human actions that are perceived both by teller and listeners to take place within human history and to possess certain qualities that give the tale verisimilitude. Legend, for its active and passive participants includes no happenings that are outside the realm of "possibility", is defined by a highly flexible set of parameters which may include miracles that are perceived as actually having happened, within the specific tradition of indoctrination where the legend arises, and within which it may be transformed over time, in order to keep it fresh and vital, and realistic. Many legends operate within the realm of uncertainty, never being entirely believed by the participants, but also never being resolutely doubted.

The Legend of Sampaloc Lake

Sampolac Lake is the biggest lake in San Pablo, and it is named after a giant tamarind (sampolac) tree. Though there are many different versions of this legend, the basic premise remains the same.
Sampolac Tree
Sampolac Tree.

There was an orchard owned by a rich couple, filled with the most delicious tamarind trees. One day, a fairy decided to test their hospitality, and came to the orchard, dressed as a poor, old woman. She begged the couple to give her a few fruits as she was very hungry. The selfish couple, instead of helping the woman, let their dogs loose on her. The old woman was bitten by the dogs and badly hurt. She touched a giant tamarind tree and cursed, "Your greed shall be punished". As the woman was walking away, the sky darkened and a ferocious storm broke out.

The downpour continued late in the night, the next morning though, the sky was clear and blue. The couple came to tend their orchard and were bewildered to find their entire orchard gone. Instead, there was water everywhere. When they looked down into the water, they could still see their precious trees at the bottom of the lake.

The Legend of Pasig River
(Pasig, Manila)

Ilog Pasig is one of the most famous rivers in the Philippines. It can be found in the city of Manila. At present, this river is notorious for being filthy and murky, but there was a time when Pasig River is pristine and is a romantic place for lovers…

Long ago, there were two young lovers. The girl was a Filipina named Paz and the gentleman was Spanish. One night, they decided to boat along a quiet and deep river. The boy was the one paddling the boat while Paz was calmly seated in front of him. The two romantically sailed the length of the river under the moonlight and along the cool breeze.

As they passed along floating water lilies, Paz extended her am and reached for a flower. The guy, not noticing what Paz was up to, got off-balanced and fell into the waters. The guy doesn’t know how to swim so every time his head will pop above the water, he shouts, “Paz, sigueme! Paz, sigueme!” which means, “Paz, rescue me!” Paz tried hard to reach for her lover but she did not succeed. At the last time the boy emerged, all he managed to say was, “Paz, sig…”

The tragic incident spread among the people and from then on, this river was called Pasig.

The Legend Of Rice
When the world was still new, the rice plant has no value. It was just a mere grass. It has no grain or fruit. It doesn’t do anything but to kiss the wind all day long. | |
One day, it happened that the Chinese goddess Kuan-yin went down to visit the Earth. In her excursion, she saw that everywhere in the four corners of China are people dying of hunger. Her soft heart cannot endure the pain and poverty that she sees and it seems as though her heart will melt with pity. She took a deep breath and said, “Aiya, Ai-ya, I need to act and help these people.”
She silently observed her surroundings. She took interest in a worthless rice plant which sprouted in the alley. She approached it and said, “I will use this humble plant to help my poor people.”
She opened her robe and exposed her white bosom. She squeezed her right breast with her hand and let out drops of milk of life to the rice plant’s panicle. She also squeezed her other breast and let the milk drop on the plant’s empty hulls.
She squeezed her breasts until there’s no milk coming out anymore. She prayed, “Oh merciful heaven, bless me with a little more drops of milk.” She massaged and squeezed her breasts again until she saw that some drops are coming out but it is mixed with blood. The goddess gave all that she can. She was glad to see that all the panicles became full of rich rice grains.
“Oh noble plant, may your panicle overflow. May we harvest a lot to eliminate hunger in this land.” After she has done her duty, she happily came back to the heavens. |
This is how the rice plant yielded its first rice grains. There are varieties which produce white rice as white as Kuan-yin’s milk, and there are also some which yields reddish rice as a reminder of the blood mixed with the last drops of the merciful goddess’ milk.

Epics or Hero tales

A long poem, typically one derived from ancient oral tradition, narrating the deeds and adventures of heroic or legendary figures or the history of a nation.

THE HUD-HUD NI ALIGUYON Epic

In the mountainous regions of Northern Luzon, a hudhud is a long tale sung during special occasions. This particular long tale is sung during harvest. A favorite topic of the hudhud is a folk hero named Aliguyon, a brave warrior.
Once upon a time, in a village called Hannanga, a boy was born to the couple named Amtalao and Dumulao. He was called Aliguyon. He was an intelligent, eager young man who wanted to learn many things, and indeed, he learned many useful things, from the stories and teachings of his father. He learned how to fight well and chant a few magic spells. Even as a child, he was a leader, for the other children of his village looked up to him with awe.
Upon leaving childhood, Aliguyon betook himself to gather forces to fight against his father’s enemy, who was Pangaiwan of the village of Daligdigan. But his challenge was not answered personally by Pangaiwan. Instead, he faced Pangaiwan’s fierce son, Pumbakhayon. Pumbakhayon was just as skilled in the arts of war and magic as Aliguyon. The two of them battled each other for three years, and neither of them showed signs of defeat.
Their battle was a tedious one, and it has been said that they both used only one spear! Aliguyon had thrown a spear to his opponent at the start of their match, but the fair Pumbakhayon had caught it deftly with one hand. And then Pumbakhayon threw the spear back to Aliguyon, who picked it just as neatly from the air.
At length Aliguyon and Pumbakhayon came to respect each other, and then eventually they came to admire each other’s talents. Their fighting stopped suddenly. Between the two of them they drafted a peace treaty between Hannanga and Daligdigan, which their peoples readily agreed to. It was fine to behold two majestic warriors finally side by side.
Aliguyon and Pumbakhayon became good friends, as peace between their villages flourished. When the time came for Aliguyon to choose a mate, he chose Pumbakhayon’s youngest sister, Bugan, who was little more than a baby. He took Bugan into his household and cared for her until she grew to be most beautiful. Pumbakhayon, in his turn, took for his wife Aliguyon’s younger sister, Aginaya. The two couples became wealthy and respected in all of Ifugao.

Arangan - Epic of Mindanao
There was a king in a faraway kingdom in Mindanao who had two sons. The elder was Prince Madali and the younger was Prince Bantugan. At a very early age, Prince Bantugan had shown superior qualities over his older brother Prince Madali. Their tutors would always tell their father that Prince Bantugan was very intelligent. He was a fast learner, even in the use of a sword bow and arrow. And he confessed such strength that he could subdue three to five men in hand-to-hand combat.
The first indication that he would soon be a formidable soldier was seen when he single-handedly killed a big crocodile that had killed several villagers. The villagers could not believe their eyes after the very short struggle.
"He is so strong!" an old man blurted out upon seeing the dead crocodile.
"How could a man so young as he, can kill a killer crocodile? he must be possessed by the gods!" another villager said in awe.
"Come on, let's thank the prince for killing the beast!" the chieftain of the place said to the villagers.
When Prince Bantugan reched his manhood, he became the kingdom's number one soldier. He always led their soldier to battlefield. And he always won over their kingdom's enemies. His name became a word of the mouth among the soldiers of the neighboring kingdoms. Soon no kingdom ever dared to make a war with their kingdom. No one would want to fight him. Peace and progress reigned in their kingdom because they had gained the respect and recognition of their neighbors.
When their father died of old age, his elder brother, Prince Madali was named the new king. There were silent protests among the ranks. They wanted Prince Bantugan to be the new king. Even the ordinary people were one in saying that Prince Bantugan was the better choice between the two princes.
"Prince Bantugan is brave and strong, he can really protec us from our enemies!" an old woman in the market place said to her listeners.
"I agree with you," and old man answered.
This did not bother Prince Bantugan. He knew that his brother was the legal heir to the throne because Prince Madali was the first born. He even vouched for his brother.
"My brother deserves to be our new king because he has studied how to run the governmen," he told his fellow soldiers and the ministers of the kingdom. "He knows how to deal with foreign relations. And he has several good ideas on how we can improve the life of everyone!"
The ministers and the soldiers just nodded in agreement.
However, a rift ensued between Prince Bantugan and King Madali. Because Prince Bantugan was not only brave and strong but very handome too, several beautiful women in the kingdom fell for him, even women whom his brother, King Madali, wanted for himself, surrendered themselves under Prince Bantugan's charm. Enraged and envious, King Madali proclaimed an order.
"I don't want anybody talking to my brother Prince Bantugan. Anyone who seen talking to him will be put in jail or be punished severely.
Prince Bantugan fel sad at his brother's order. he found himself like a person with communicable disease. Everyone was staying away from him, even his women. even the people he loved. No one wanted to talk to him for fear of being jailed or severely punished by the king. Unable to contain his grief, he decided one day to leave the kingdom and settled to a faraway land where he spent the rest of his life. Maragtas: The Ten Borneon Datus and the Purchase of Panay

Although the Dinagyang Festival focuses on the Santo Niño, Ati-Atihan traces its roots to the barter or purchase of Panay Island by the 10 Bornean datus from Ati King Marikudo during the first half of the 13th Century in Sinugbuhan, San Joaquin in southern Iloilo.
Injustice, tyranny, and cruelty drove the ten datus of Borneo to flee from their country–escaping the oppressive rule of the despotic Sultan Makatunao. They silently and secretly boarded their binidays (boats) and sailed along the coasts of Paragua (Palawan). In the course of their northward journey, they sighted the island of Panay and steered their boats towards it until they reached the mouth of Sirwagan River north of the hamlet of Sinugbuhan which was the abode of King Marikudo. There they saw an Ati fishing in the creek from whom they learned about Marikudo, his kingdom and his people.
The Borneans gained audience with Marikudo, who first acted with caution and restraint having had undesirable experiences with Moro pirates.

Datu Puti, however, expressed his desire to befriend the natives and their intention to settle in the land permanently, possibly at the site of Marikudo’s settlement.
The offer interested Marikudo who gathered his men to discuss the terms of the offer and ordered them to prepare a feast. When everything was ready, a banquet was held in which the Borneans and the natives danced their “sinulog” and displayed their “dinapay” to the accompaniment of their “lantoy” and “tipano” made of light bamboo. They beat their drums and played on their “mangmang”, “gurong-gurong” and “subling”. In return, the Negritos danced their “urokoy” and their “undok-undok”.
When the feast was over, Marikudo’s elders and the ten datus sat down to discuss the terms of the purchase. The famous barter was then held at Embidayan at the seashore near the mouth of the Sinugbuhan River, in the neighborhood of what is now the Tiolas-Dao inter-provincial road.
The new settlers moved in three days after the barter, with the exception of Datu Paiburong and his wife and followers, who settled separately in a place now called Lang in Dueñas, Iloilo.
From Sinugbuhan, the datus spread out to different places of Madia-as, the -name they substituted for Aninipay (Panay). To Datu Sumakwel was assigned Hamtik (Antique); Datu Bangkaya, Aklan; and Datu Paiburong , Irong-Irong (Iloilo). Datu Puti returned to Borneo and fought Datu Makatunao.
Marikudo’s territory costs one golden “saduk”, a sort of helmet or broad-rimmed hat which gives protection to the face from sun and rain; and one golden necklace which Marikudo’s wife Maniwantiwan preferred over the gold basin Datu Puti first offered. There are contentions, however, that the price was not a golden “saduk” but rather a ”saduk” full of gold. Followers of this point of view say that it was rather impractical for the Borneans to be wearing a golden hat which was heavy.

Fairytales

A fairy tale (pronounced /ˈfeəriˌteɪl/) is a type of short story that typically features European folkloric fantasy characters, such as dwarves, elves, fairies, giants, gnomes, goblins, mermaids, trols, or witches, and usually magic orenchantments. Fairy tales may be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends (which generally involve belief in the veracity of the events described)[1] and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables.

The Wise Little Girl
Once upon a time in the immense Russian steppe, lay a little village where nearly all the inhabitants bred horses. It was the month of October, when a big livestock market was held yearly in the main town. Two brothers, one rich and the other one poor, set off for market. The rich man rode a stallion, and the poor brother a young mare. At dusk, they stopped beside an empty hut and tethered their horses outside, before going to sleep themselves on two heaps of straw. Great was their surprise, when, next morning they saw three horses outside, instead of two. Well, to be exact the newcomer was not really a horse. It was a foal, to which the mare had given birth during the night. Soon it had the strength to struggle to its feet, and after a drink of its mother's milk, the foal staggered its first few steps. The stallion greeted it with a cheerful whinny, and when the two brothers set eyes on it for the first time, the foal was standing beside the stallion. "It belongs to me!" exclaimed Dimitri, the rich brother, the minute he saw it. "It's my stallion's foal." Ivan, the poor brother, began to laugh. "Whoever heard of a stallion having a foal? It was born to my mare!" "No, that's not true! It was standing close to the stallion, so it's the stallion's foal. And therefore it's mine!" The brothers started to quarrel, then they decided to go to town and bring the matter before the judges. Still arguing, they headed for the big square where the courtroom stood. But what they didn't know was that it was a special day, the day when, once a year, the Emperor himself administered the law. He himself received all who came seeking justice. The brothers were ushered into his presence, and they told him all about the dispute. Of course, the Emperor knew perfectly well who was the owner of the foal. He was on the point of proclaiming in favor of the poor brother, when suddenly Ivan developed an unfortunate twitch in his eye. The Emperor was greatly annoyed by this familiarity by a humble peasant, and decided to punish Ivan for his disrespect. After listening to both sides of the story, he declared it was difficult, indeed impossible, to say exactly who was the foal's rightful owner. And being in the mood for a spot of fun, and since he loved posing riddles and solving them as well, to the amusement of his counselors, he exclaimed. "I can't judge which of you should have the foal, so it will be awarded to whichever of you solves the following four riddles: what is the fastest thing in the world? What is the fattest? What's the softest and what is the most precious? I command you to return to the palace in a week's time with your answers!" Dimitri started to puzzle over the answers as soon as he left the courtroom. When he reached home, however, he realized he had nobody to help him. "Well, I'll just have to seek help, for if I can't solve these riddles, I'll lose the foal!" Then he remembered a woman, one of his neighbors, to whom he had once lent a silver ducat. That had been some time ago, and with the interest, the neighbor now owed him three ducats. And since she had a reputation for being quick-witted, but also very astute, he decided to ask her advice, in exchange for canceling part of her debt. But the woman was not slow to show how astute she really was, and promptly demanded that the whole debt be wiped out in exchange for the answers. "The fastest thing in the world is my husband's bay horse," she said. "Nothing can beat it! The fattest is our pig! Such a huge beast has never been seen! The softest is the quilt I made for the bed, using my own goose's feathers. It's the envy of all my friends. The most precious thing in the world is my three-month old nephew. There isn't a more handsome child. I wouldn't exchange him for all the gold on earth, and that makes him the most precious thing on earth!" Dimitri was rather doubtful about the woman's answers being correct. On the other hand, he had to take some kind of solution back to the Emperor. And he guessed, quite rightly, that if he didn't, he would be punished. In the meantime, Ivan, who was a widower, had gone back to the humble cottage where he lived with his small daughter. Only seven years old, the little girl was often left alone, and as a result, was thoughtful and very clever for her age. The poor man took the little girl into his confidence, for like his brother, he knew he would never be able to find the answers by himself. The child sat in silence for a moment, then firmly said. "Tell the Emperor that the fastest thing in the world is the cold north wind in winter. The fattest is the soil in our fields whose crops give life to men and animals alike, the softest thing is a child's caress and the most precious is honesty." The day came when the two brothers were to return before the Emperor. They were led into his presence. The Emperor was curious to hear what they had to say, but he roared with laughter at Dimitri's foolish answers. However, when it was Ivan's turn to speak, a frown spread over the Emperor's face. The poor brother's wise replies made him squirm, especially the last one, about honesty, the most precious thing of all. The Emperor knew perfectly well that he had been dishonest in his dealings with the poor brother, for he had denied him justice. But he could not bear to admit it in front of his own counselors, so he angrily demanded: "Who gave you these answers?" Ivan told the Emperor that it was his small daughter. Still annoyed, the great man said. "You shall be rewarded for having such a wise and clever daughter. You shall be awarded the foal that your brother claimed, together with a hundred silver ducats... But... but..." and the Emperor winked at his counselors. "You will come before me in seven days' time, bringing your daughter. And since she's so clever, she must appear before me neither naked nor dressed, neither on foot nor on horseback, neither bearing gifts nor empty-handed. And if she does this, you will have your reward. If not, you'll have your head chopped off for your impudence!" The onlookers began to laugh, knowing that the poor man would never to able to fulfill the Emperor's conditions. Ivan went home in despair, his eyes brimming with tears. But when he had told his daughter what had happened, she calmly said. "Tomorrow, go and catch a hare and a partridge. Both must be alive! You'll have the foal and the hundred silver ducats! Leave it to me!" Ivan did as his daughter said. He had no idea what the two creatures were for, but he trusted in his daughter's wisdom. On the day of the audience with the Emperor, the palace was thronged with bystanders, waiting for Ivan and his small daughter to arrive. At last, the little girl appeared, draped in a fishing net, riding the hare and holding the partridge in her hand. She was neither naked nor dressed, on foot or on horseback. Scowling, the Emperor told her. "I said neither bearing gifts nor empty-handed!" At these words, the little girl held out the partridge. The Emperor stretched out his hand to grasp it, but the bird fluttered into the air. The third condition had been fulfilled. In spite of himself, the Emperor could not help admiring the little girl who had so cleverly passed such a test, and in a gentler voice, he said. "Is your father terribly poor, and does he desperately need the foal." "Oh, yes!" replied the little girl. "We live on the hares he catches in the rivers and the fish he picks from the trees!" "Aha!" cried the Emperor triumphantly. "So you're not as clever as you seem to be! Whoever heard of hares in the river and fish in the trees! To which the little girl swiftly replied. "And whoever heard of a stallion having a foal?" At that, both Emperor and Court burst into peals of laughter. Ivan was immediately given his hundred silver ducats and the foal, and the Emperor proclaimed. "Only in my kingdom could such a wise little girl be born!"

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll

All in the golden afternoon
Full leisurely we glide;
For both our oars, with little skill,
By little arms are plied,
While little hands make vain pretense
Our wanderings to guide. Ah, cruel Three! In such an hour,
Beneath such dreamy weather,
To beg a tale, of breath too weak
To stir the tiniest feather!
Yet what can one poor voice avail
Against three tongues together? Imperious Prima Flashes forth
Her edict to "begin it"--
In gentler tones Secunda hopes
"There will be nonsense in it"--
While Tertia interrupts the tale
Not more than once a minute. Anon, to sudden silence won,
In fancy they purse
The dream-child moving through a land
Of wonders wild and new,
In friendly chat with bird or beast--
And half believe it true. And ever, as the story drained
The wells of fancy dry,
And faintly strove that weary one
To put the subject by,
"The rest next time--" "It is next time!"
The happy voices cry. Thus grew the tale of Wonderland:
Thus slowly, one by one,
Its quaint events were hammered out--
And now the tale is done,
And home we steer, a merry crew,
Beneath the setting sun. Alice! a childish story take,
And with a gentle hand
Lay it where Childhood's dreams are twined
In Memory's mystic band,
Like pilgrim's withered wreath of flowers
Plucked in a far-off land.

THE TWELVE DANCING PRINCESSES
Once upon a time, there was a king who had twelve of the most beautiful daughters in all the land. The king was very protective of his daughters, so every night when they went to bed, the king ordered that the doors be locked and that two guards be posted outside the room at all times. Despite this, every morning when the room was opened again, the princesses’ shoes were always worn through, and it was as though they had been dancing through the night. None of the king’s wisest men could figure out how this happened or where the daughters had been.
The king was so desperate for an answer that he made a proclamation: Anyone who discovered the secret and learned where the princesses went every night would be able to have his favorite princess for a wife and become the king’s heir. However, anyone who tried and failed for three days and three nights would be executed.
The first to take on the challenge was a prince from a neighboring kingdom. The palace threw a big party in his honor, and when it was time for bed, the prince was taken to the princesses’ room. The prince decided he would stay there all night so he could watch to see where the princesses went. However, the prince soon fell asleep. When he woke up in the morning, the princesses’ shoes had all been worn though. He spent the next night and the night after that trying to stay awake long enough to see where the princesses went, but every night he fell asleep, and the king ordered his execution. Several others attempted the task after hearing of the prince’s failure, but none succeeded.
It just so happened that an old soldier who had been injured in battle was passing through the kingdom. As he was walking, he met an old woman who asked where he was going.
“I’m not sure where I’m going or what I will do when I get there,” he said, “but I would like to find out where it is the princesses go every night, because then I might become king.”
“Well,” said the old woman, “that isn’t too difficult. All you have to do is avoid the wine the princesses give you and pretend to be fast asleep.”
Then the woman gave him a cloak and said, “This cloak will make you invisible, and you’ll be able to follow the princesses.”
The soldier felt that he could accomplish the task, so he went to the king and said he was willing to try.
The king ordered a party thrown in the soldier’s honor, and he was given gifts and food and rich wares. When evening came, he went to the princesses’ room where the eldest brought him a cup of wine. He secretly emptied the cup when the princess wasn’t looking and didn’t drink a drop. Then, he lay down and pretended to snore. The princesses waited until they thought he was fast asleep and proceeded to dress themselves in their finest gowns. The princesses were excited about the evening of dancing that was ahead of them, but the youngest princess seemed wary: “I don’t know what it is, but I have a bad feeling about all this.”
The eldest princess scoffed at her. “Don’t be so silly,” she said. “You’re always afraid. But just remember how many men have tried to learn our secret and failed. This soldier will be no different.”
When all the princesses were dressed and ready, they went to check on the soldier, who still seemed fast asleep. The eldest princess decided it was time to go and went to the head of her bed. She clapped three times, and a trapdoor swung open. The soldier saw them going through the trapdoor, put on his cloak, and followed them. He was in such a hurry that he accidentally stepped on the youngest princess’s dress on the way down the stairs, and she screamed. The eldest asked what was wrong.
“Someone stepped on my gown!” the princess said.
“Don’t be stupid,” her sister responded. “You just got it caught on a nail. There’s no one else down here, and the soldier upstairs is fast asleep.”
They reached the end of the stairs, and the soldier saw the most beautiful grove of trees. The leaves were all made of silver, and the soldier decided to take one back with him. He broke off a branch, but the youngest princess heard the noise.
“Did you hear that?” she asked her sisters. “I’ve never heard that sound before.”
“It’s only the princes,” the eldest responded. “They are so excited to see us.”
They came to a second grove of trees where the leaves were all made of gold. Then they came to a third grove with trees that had leaves of diamonds. The soldier broke off branches from each type of tree, and the youngest princess became more and more anxious. Finally, they made it to a large lake where there were twelve boats that contained twelve handsome princes.
Each of the princesses went into one of the boats, and the soldier decided to stow away with the youngest. As they were rowing, the prince said, “I’m not sure why, but the boat seems heavier today.” The princess responded that it was only the heat, and they kept rowing.
On the other side of the lake, there was a beautiful castle, and the soldier could hear sounds of music wafting across the water. The boats landed, and the princes and princesses went into

the castle. They danced into the wee hours of the morning. By then, the princesses’ shoes were worn out, and they were forced to leave. The princes rowed them back, and the princesses promised to return the next night.
When they got to the stairs, the soldier ran ahead and lay down in his bed. The princesses could hear him snoring, so they changed out of their gowns and went to bed. The next morning the soldier said nothing in the hopes that he could see more of the strange world. He returned with the princesses the second and third night, and they again danced until their shoes were worn thin. On the third night, he took a golden cup to prove to the king where he had been.
The next morning, the king summoned the soldier to the throne room. The king asked if he had discovered where the princesses went every night. The soldier responded, “Yes. They dance with twelve princes in a castle underground.” He then told the king all that he had seen and presented the silver, gold, and diamond branches as well as the golden cup.
The king called for his daughters and asked if what the soldier said was true. When they saw the branches and the cup, they confessed. The king asked the soldier which he wanted for his wife, and, as the soldier was not a young man, he chose the eldest. They were married that same day, and the soldier was named the king’s heir.

Bible stories or parables

Bible stories are sacred writings of the Christian Religion comprising the Old and New Testament and in the Roman Catholic church.

UPS AND DOWNS, JOSEPH IN THE HOUSE OF POTIPHAR
Joseph was Jacob's little baby, and Jacob loved him very much. That was a good thing. But then, Joseph's older brothers got jealous and were mean to him. That was a bad thing. Jacob gave Joseph a wonderful new coat. A good thing. But that made Joseph's brothers REALLY jealous. A bad thing again. Joseph's brothers were so jealous, they decided to kill him. A really bad thing! But, at the last minute they decide NOT to kill him - a good thing - but to throw him into a pit instead. Bad again! But then Joseph's brothers decide to drag Joseph OUT of the pit, a good thing - and sell him to some traveling merchants, so he would never see his family again. Joseph had to be wondering WHAT was going on! But life is like that. Sometimes there are good times and sometimes there are bad times. But ALL the time, God is with us. But even more than that, sometimes God uses what seem like the worst times to do something wonderful. THAT'S what was going on!
Meanwhile, the caravan of traveling merchants arrived in Egypt.
Now, I suppose they could have sold Joseph to just any old Egyptian, who lived in some out of the way part of town, and we would have never heard of him again. But that's not what God had in mind. Instead, they sold Joseph to a man named Potiphar. And Potiphar just happened to be an officer in the court of the Pharaoh, the king of all Egypt. Well, of course it didn't just happen that way. God planned it that way! But Potiphar wasn't just any officer in the Pharaoh's court, he was the captain of the Palace guard. He was a big cheese in Egypt, and Joseph was in an important place. So Joseph went from a pit in the wilderness to live in the beautiful house of a very rich and powerful man in the land of Egypt. A bad thing turned into a good thing again! God was with Joseph, and he blessed him. Everything Joseph did for his master turned out well. Really well. His master Potiphar saw this, and he was no dummy. He said to himself, "Why don't I just let Joseph run everything, and then EVERYTHING will turn out well!" And that's just what he did. Potiphar made Joseph his personal servant, and he put him in charge of all that Potiphar owned. And God was with Joseph. God blessed Potiphar's house and all the crops in his fields and everything he owned. All Potiphar had to worry about was what was for dinner! But, even then, trouble was just around the corner. Again!
Okay, Joseph was a hunk. He was handsome and strong, and if he was alive today, you would probably see his picture on People magazine while you were waiting in line at the grocery store to buy a Milky Way candy bar.
The trouble hiding around the corner was Potiphar's wife. She saw how strong and handsome Joseph was. And she wanted him.
"Kiss me!" she said to Joseph one day while no one was looking.
Potiphar was away, working in another part of the house. Potiphar's wife grabbed Joseph as he walked by. "Kiss me!" she said again.
"I can't do that!" Joseph said. "My master trusts me! He has put me in charge of everything he owns. It is just like everything is mine. But he is your husband. How can you ask me to kiss you??!! That would be wrong! And God would not be pleased with me at all." But Potiphar's wife would not give up. Day after day, she secretly grabbed him and tried to kiss him. But Joseph always said no. But one day, there was no one at home. Potiphar and all the other servants were away. And Potiphar's wife saw her chance. She grabbed Joseph by the robe and wouldn't let him go.
"I will not kiss you!" Joseph said, and he ran away so fast he left his coat in her hand. Now Potiphar's wife was angry. She was so angry that Joseph would not have her that she decided to get even. She had a terrible idea. She screamed! "Help me!!! Help me!!! This servant of my husband came into my bedroom and tried to kiss me!!!" By then, the other servants had come back home, and they came running into her bedroom and saw her standing there. "Look!" she said, "When I screamed, he tried to run away. He ran away so fast, he left his coat!" That night, she told the same lie to her husband. "See, what I am saying is true. He came into my room. He even left his coat!"
Potiphar was furious. He called for his servants at once. That very night they broke into Joseph's room and dragged him out of bed, and they threw him into a cold, dark prison cell. Things looked pretty terrible for Joseph again.
And maybe that night, Joseph sat in his cell, shivering and scared. Maybe he sat there with his head in his hands wondering why all this was happening. "God, where did you go?" He might have even cried.
If only he could see the amazing things God had planned.
But he couldn't just then. For now, all he could do was trust in God, because God was with him. But, boy, it sure didn't seem like it.
But that's how it is. Even in the darkest times, God is still with us. And even then God is at work on a wonderful plan.
Always remember that.

GOD’S AMAZING PLAN
The creator of the whole universe is our Father. We are his children, and Jesus is our brother.
All the riches of heaven now belong to us! They belong to us because they belong to God, and we are his children.
Just think - the sun, the moon, the earth and stars, are ours!
What a wonder!
And this was God's plan from the very beginning of time.
Before he even made the world, God planned to bring us into his family, to be together with his son Jesus.
But there was a problem.
How could we ever be with such a good and perfect God, when we know all the bad things we have done? Worse than that, God can't let bad things go unpunished. That wouldn't be right or fair, and God is perfect in all things.
But God loves us so much, that he planned from the beginning to send Jesus to take the punishment he knew one day we would all deserve.
And so, when the right time came, God took our sins from us, and put them all on Jesus. He accepted Jesus in our place on the cross to pay the price for all the wrong we have ever done, or ever will do, no matter how bad.
All our sins have been paid for by the highest price in all the universe. They have been paid for by the blood of Jesus. Our debt has been settled, now and forever. There is nothing more we could ever do. It is done. We have been set free.
In God's eyes now, we are as fresh and clean and pure as if we never sinned at all.
When God sees you and me, he sees Jesus. He doesn't see all the mistakes we have made, or all the times we have messed up or disappointed him. All of that has been completely washed away.
When God sees us, he sees the pure and perfect light of his son.

Now, because of God's great love for us, we are part of his family forever.

GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS
“In my dream,” he said, “I saw a grapevine with three branches. All of a sudden, leaves began to grow on the branches, and then blossoms, and then grapes. When the grapes were ripe, I picked some and squeezed them into the Pharaoh’s cup and brought it to him.”
“I have good news!” Joseph said.
“Here is what your dream means. The three branches stand for three days. In three days, you will be lifted up from this cold, dark prison. You will be set free, and you will be restored to your Master’s house!”
And then Joseph added, “When you are back, serving in Pharaoh’s house, please remember me. Put in a good word for me with Pharaoh, and help me get out of prison, because I did nothing wrong.”
Now, when the Baker heard the good news about the Butler’s dream, he thought, ‘Whew! That IS good news! I can’t wait to hear what my dream means!’
And so he grabbed Joseph by the arm and said, “I had a dream too!
“In my dream, I was carrying three baskets on my head. In the top basket there were all kinds of tasty baked goods for Pharaoh, and the birds were eating them.”
Joseph’s paused a moment, not knowing quite how to say what he had to say. “I am afraid for you the news is not so good.
“The three baskets stand for three days. And in three days, you will be lifted up too. But it won’t be like the Butler is going to be lifted up. You are going to be lifted up - Pharaoh is going to cut off your head, and hang your body on a pole for the birds to eat.”

That’s pretty scary.

But it has to be scary, because it is a warning. At the end of our life, each of us will be like either the Butler or the Baker.

Jesus was like both.

The Baker offended his Master, and he had to suffer the punishment for it. Jesus was like the Baker. Jesus was lifted up on a pole when he was put to death on the cross. Only Jesus suffered for OUR offenses, not his own.

But then, just like the Butler, after three days in a cold dark tomb, Jesus was lifted up to live in his Father’s house forever.

And so, when we come to the end of our life, everyone who believes in Jesus will be like the Butler. That is the Good News! We will be lifted up with Jesus, and we will live with him in our Master’s house forever.
But everyone else will be like the Baker. And that will not be good news at all.
There is Good News, but there is the bad news too. And that is something important to remember.
Well, three days later, it was Pharaoh’s birthday.
And Pharaoh gave himself a great party to celebrate how wonderful and mighty he was. Pharaohs can do stuff like that!

“Happy birthday to me! Happy birthday to me!”

Pharaoh must have been in a very good mood, because he forgave the Butler. He even invited him to his party, and gave him his old job back in the palace.
But things were not so happy for the Baker. It all happened just as Joseph said it would.
But the moment the Butler returned to the palace, he forgot all about Joseph, and never said a word to Pharaoh about him.

Biographies

A biography or simply bio is a detailed description or account of a person's life. It entails more than basic facts like education, work, relationships, and death—a biography also portrays a subject's experience of these events. Unlike a profile or curriculum vitae (résumé), a biography presents a subject's life story, highlighting various aspects of his or her life, including intimate details of experience, and may include an analysis of the subject's personality.
Biographical works are usually non-fiction, but fiction can also be used to portray a person's life. One in-depth form of biographical coverage is called legacy writing. Works in diverse media—from literature to film—form the genreknown as biography.

Emily Dickinson
Poet (1830–1886)

Emily Dickinson was a reclusive American poet. Unrecognized in her own time, Dickinson is known posthumously for her unusual use of form and syntax.
Born on December 10, 1830, in Amherst, Massachusetts, Emily Dickinson left school as a teenager to live a reclusive life on the family homestead. There, she filled notebooks with poetry and wrote hundreds of letters. Dickinson's remarkable work was published after her death—on May 15, 1886, in Amherst—and she is now considered one of the towering figures of American literature.

Early Life and Education
Emily Elizabeth Dickinson was born on December 10, 1830, in Amherst, Massachusetts. Her family had deep roots in New England. Her paternal grandfather, Samuel Dickinson, was well known as the founder of Amherst College. Her father worked at Amherst and served as a state legislator. He married Emily Norcross in 1828 and the couple had three children: William Austin, Lavinia Norcross and Emily.
Emily Dickinson was educated at Amherst Academy (now Amherst College) and the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary. She was an excellent student, despite missing long stretches of the school year due to frequent illness and depression. Though the precise reasons for Dickinson's final departure from the academy in 1848 are unknown, it is believed that her fragile emotional state probably played a role.

Writing and Influences
Dickinson began writing as a teenager. Her early influences include Leonard Humphrey, principal of Amherst Academy, and a family friend named Benjamin Franklin Newton. Newton introduced Dickinson to the poetry of William Wordsworth, who also served as an inspiration to the young writer. In 1855, Dickinson ventured outside of Amherst, as far as Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There, she befriended a minister named Charles Wadsworth, who would become a cherished correspondent.
Among her peers, Dickinson's closest friend and adviser was a woman named Susan Gilbert. In 1856, Gilbert married Dickinson's brother, William Austin Dickinson. The Dickinson family lived on a large home known as The Homestead in Amherst. After their marriage, William and Susan settled in a property near The Homestead known as The Evergreens. Emily served as chief caregiver for their ailing mother from the mid-1850s until her mother’s death in 1882. (Neither Emily nor her sister Lavinia ever married and lived together at The Homestead until their respective deaths.)
Dickinson's seclusion during this period was probably partly due to her responsibilities as guardian of her sick mother. Scholars have also speculated that she suffered from conditions such as agoraphobia, depression and/or anxiety. She also was treated for a painful ailment of her eyes. After the mid 1860s, she rarely left the confines of The Homestead. It was also during this time that Dickinson was most productive as a poet, filling notebooks with verse without any awareness on the part of her family members. In her spare time, Dickinson studied botany and compiled a vast herbarium. She also maintained correspondence with a variety of contacts. One of her friendships, with Judge Otis Phillips Lord, seems to have developed into a romance before Lord's death in 1884.

Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King Jr was one of America’s most influential civil rights activists. His passionate, but non violent protests, helped to raise awareness of racial inequalities in America, leading to significant political change. Martin Luther King was also an eloquent orator who captured the imagination and hearts of people, both black and white.
Early Life of Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta on 15 January 1929. Both his father and grandfather were pastors in an African-American Baptist church. M. Luther King attended Morehouse College in Atlanta, (segregated schooling) and then went to study at Crozer Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania and Boston University. During his time at University Martin Luther King became aware of the vast inequality and injustice faced by black Americans; in particular he was influenced by Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violent protest. The philosophy of Gandhi tied in with the teachings of his Baptist faith. At the age of 24, King married Coretta Scott, a beautiful and talented young woman. After getting married, King became a priest at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama.
Montgomery Bus Boycott
A turning point in the life of Martin Luther King was the Montgomery Bus Boycott which he helped to promote. His boycott also became a turning point in the civil rights struggle – attracting national press for the cause.
It began in innocuous circumstances on 5 December 1955. Rosa Parks, a civil rights activist, refused to given up her seat – she was sitting in a white only area. This broke the strict segregation of coloured and white people on the Montgomery buses. The bus company refused to back down and so Martin Luther King helped to organise a strike where coloured people refused to use any of the city buses. The boycott lasted for several months, the issue was then brought to the Supreme Court who declared the segregation was unconstitutional.

Civil Rights Movement
After the success of the Montgomery bus boycott, King and other ministers founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). This proved to be a nucleus for the growing civil rights movement. Later there would be arguments about the best approach to take. In particular the 1960s saw the rise of the Black power movement, epitomised by Malcolm X and other black nationalist groups. However, King always remained committed to the ideals of non violent struggle.
Martin Luther King and Malcolm X briefly meet in 1964 before going to listen to a Senate debate about civil rights in Washington. (image Wikicommons)
Speeches of Martin Luther King Jr
Martin Luther King was an inspirational and influential speaker; he had the capacity to move and uplift his audiences. In particular he could offer a vision of hope. He captured the injustice of the time but also felt that this injustice was like a passing cloud. King frequently made references to God, the Bible and his Christian Faith.

Helen Keller
Helen Keller was born 27 June 1880 in Tusculum, Alabama. When she was only 19 months old, she experienced a severe childhood illness, which left her deaf and blind (only a very partial sight). For the first few years of her life, she was only able to communicate with her family through a rudimentary number of signs; she had a little more success communicating with the six year old daughter of the family cook. However, unable to communicate properly, she was considered to be badly behaved, for example, eating from the plates of anyone on the table with her fingers.
In 1886, Helen was sent to see an eye, ear and nose specialist in Baltimore. He put them in touch with Alexander Graham Bell, who was currently investigate issues of deafness and sound (he would also develop the first telephone) Bell, helped Keller to visit the Perkins Institute for the Blind, and this led to a long relationship with Anne Sullivan – who was a former student herself. Sullivan was visually impaired, but aged only 20 and with no prior experience, she set about teaching Helen how to communicate. The two maintained a long relationship of 49 years.
Learning to Communicate
In the beginning, Keller was frustrated by her inability to pick up the hand signals that Sullivan were giving. However, after a frustrating month, Keller picked up on Sullivan’s system of hand signals through understanding the word water. Sullivan poured water over Keller’s left hand and wrote out on her right hand the word ‘water’. This helped Helen to fully understand the system, and she was soon able to identify a variety of household objects.
“The most important day I remember in all my life is the one on which my teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan, came to me. I am filled with wonder when I consider the immeasurable contrasts between the two lives which it connects. It was the third of March, 1887, three months before I was seven years old.”
- Helen Keller, The Story of My Life, 1903, Ch. 4
Keller made rapid progress and quickly overcame her bad habits. She became proficient in Braille, and was able to begin a fruitful education, despite her disability. Keller made more progress than anyone expected. She would later learn to write with a Braille typewriter.
Keller came into contact with American author, Mark Twain. Twain admired the perseverance of Keller and helped persuade Henry Rogers, an oil businessman to fund her education. With great difficulty, Keller was able to study at Radcliffe College, where in 1904, she was able to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree. During her education, she also learned to speak and practise lip-reading. Her sense of touch became extremely subtle.
Keller became a proficient writer and speaker. In 1903, she published an autobiography ‘The Story of My Life‘ It recounted her struggles to overcome her disabilities.

Political Views
Keller also wrote on political issues, Keller was a strong supporter of the American Socialist party and joined the party in 1909. She wished to see a fairer distribution of income, and an end to the inequality of Capitalist society. She said she became a more convinced socialist after the 1912 miners strike. Her book ‘Out of the Dark‘ (1913) includes several essays on socialism. She supported Eugene V Debs, in each of the Presidential election he stood for. In 1912, she joined the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW); as well as advocating socialism, Keller was a pacifist and opposed the American involvement in World War One.

Religious Views
In religious matters, she advocated the teachings of Emanuel Swedenborg, a Christian theologian who advocated a particular spiritual interpretation of the Bible. She published ‘My Religion‘ in 1927.

Charity Work
From 1918, she devoted much of her time to raise funds and awareness for blind charities. She sought to raise money and also improve the living conditions of the blind, who at the time were often badly educated and living in asylums. Her public profile helped to de-stigmatise blindness and deafness.
Towards the end of her life, she suffered a stroke and she died in her sleep on June 1, 1968. She was given numerous awards during her life, including the Presidential medal of Freedom in 1964, by Lyndon B. Johnson.…...

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