(From Repetitive Stories: A collection for young and old, Hella Coenen, 1997)
It snows and it snows and it snows and the fields are white. The rabbit has nothing to eat. Carefully, he looks out of his burrow. “Brrrr, it’s cold.”
The rabbit wants to go and look for something. DO you know what? For two big winter carrots that were sleeping under the snow.
Nibble, nibble, nibble. He finished one of them. Now he was not hungry anymore. The rabbit thinks, “It is so cold and it is snowing so, maybe my neighbour the horse is hungry. I shall take him the second carrot.”
“Hoppity, hoppity, trot. The cold hurts me not.”
Knock, knock, knock, he opens the door. Oh, the horse is not there. Carefully he puts the carrot down, and the rabbit disappears into the snow again.
In the cold wet snow, the horse is looking for something to eat. Hey, there was something! Do you know what? A big fat turnip under a heap in the snow.
Bite, bite, bite, and he eats the whole turnip up. “That tasted good!” Now he is not hungry any more. He goes back to the stable. When he arrives home he sees the carrot.
“Who has brought this here?” he syas in astonishment, “It must have been the rabbit because I can see his foot prints in the deep snow. Oh how kind of him.” The horse thinks, “it is so cold and it is snowing so, maybe my neighbour the sheep is hungry. I shall taker her the carrot.”
“Hoppity, trot trot, so, to the sheep I go. Never tired or slow, trotting through the snow.”
Knock, knock, knock. He pushes the door open. “Oh, the sheep is not here.” Carefully he puts the carrot down, and the rabbit disappears into the snow again.
The sheep with her thick woolly coat has gone to look for something to eat. Hey, there she sees something. Do you know what. A beautiful red cabbage. It was hiding under the snow. She eats the cabbage, leaf after leaf, “bite, bite, bite.”
Now she is not hungry any more. So she quickly goes back to the sheep pen. When she gets home she sees the carrot and says in astonishment. “Who has brought this here? It must have been the horse, because I can see his hoof prints here in the deep snow.”
The hseep think, “It is so cold, and it is snowing so hard, maybe my friend the deer is hungry. I shall take him the carrot.”
“Oh, sheep so brave and without fear, you will find your friend the deer, by the forest very near.”
IKnock, knock, knock, she opens the door. Oh, the deer is not here. Carefully she puts the carrot down and the sheep disappears again.
In the cold wet snow the sdder is trying to find something. Do you know what? A little bunch of frozen grass. Bite, chew, bite, it tastes just right. So now she is not hu ngry anymore. When she comes home she sees the carrot lying there and she says in astonishment, “Who has brought this here? That must have been the brown sheep. Look, a tussle of wool is left behind there.” The deer thinks, “It is so cold and it is snowing so, maybe my friend the rabbit is hungry. I shall go and take this carrot to him.
“Jump, little deer, jump so high. Over the hedge, and the field nearby
Right through the forest with trees so bare,
You will find friend rabbit awaiting there.”
At last she sees the burrow where her dear friend lives. She pushes against the door. She sees her friend asleep in his bed.
Carefully she puts the carrot down. Then the rabbit awakes. The deer says “It is so cold and it is snowing so hard, maybe you have not got any food. That is why I bring you this carrot.”
And that is how the carrot went from the rabbit to the horse,
From the horse to the sheep,
From the sheep to the deer,
From the deer back to the rabbit.
Those are really good friends.