Mr. Frog's Story by Ellen Robena Field
Down in the garden is a pretty brook, and something funny happened one day
as I was sitting watching the tadpoles and minnows playing tag and
hide-and-go-seek. All at once something gave a jump out of the water and
with a loud "kerchunk," landed on a stone near by. It was Mr. Frog, and as
"kerchunk" in frog language means "how do you do?" I replied politely and
inquired for his health.
He assured me that he was well and happy, and went on talking. "Did you
know that I was once a tadpole just like those little creatures in the
"I have heard people say that you were," I answered. "You would not
believe it to look at me now, would you?"
"No," I said, for certainly he did not look at all like the queer little
animals I was watching.
"Yes," he continued, "once I was a tiny black egg in a globe of clear
white jelly, and floated around along the bank of this same brook. Soon I
grew into a wee tadpole, and freed myself from the globe of jelly, and
found I could swim about. I had a long flat tail which I used as a paddle
to help me swim. I had no feet nor legs then, but I grew very fast, and
soon two legs came out near my tail, and by and by two front ones came,
and I did not need my tail any more, so it disappeared. Then I discovered
that I had a long, slender tongue to catch insects with. My skin, too, had
changed, and is now covered with beautiful spots, and if you look at my
eyes you will see how bright they are.
"I live beside this brook with my family, and my cousins, the toads; and
in the spring and summer evenings we sing to our little tadpole children,
and tell them of the time when they, too, will grow up and be toads and
Here Mr. Frog paused, and before I could thank him for his interesting
story, he gave a loud "kadunk," which means "good-by," and with a splash
he was off for a swim in the brook.