The Dizzy Moth, by Jeannette Marks
The Cheerful Cricket
Dizzy batted up against the window, striking his head and wings with a
hard rattle. Mother Moth, like a good mother, had told Dizzy time and
time again never to fly toward a light. Dizzy had already had some
experience with odd lights hung up on poles among the oak-trees. These
lights had hoods over them, hard and white. Dizzy often wondered why the
white hoods were not as soft as the oak-buds, notwithstanding the fact
that his mother as often explained both to him and his little Sister
Flutter that electric lights were not oak-buds.
Poor Dizzy, there is no use in preaching! Up, up through the oak-tree he
flew, now tumbling against a branch, now untangling himself from a
sticky new bud. Up, up Dizzy sped toward a square white glare of light.
Little Flutter's yellow wings trembled with fear as she saw her brother
start upward. She told him in a faint voice that window panes were very
dangerous. Mother Moth had cautioned them both about window panes.
Dizzy stumbled onto the sill with a sickening thud, scattering the
diamond dust from his sun-colored pearl wings into a fine glittering
mist upon the green paint. Ugh! with a jar up flew the window and Dizzy,
thinking faintly about little Flutter, cuddled among the clover
blossoms, was swept into the room and its blinding light. The soft, warm
fragrance of the night air reminded him of the cozy little place on the
grass at the foot of the hill—the little birch-leaf home. Mother Moth,
Flutter, and Father Buzz were all down there now, and listening perhaps
to the Cob-web Symphony played by the Marsh Grass Vesper Quartette. And
this, too, was the evening when the June Bug was to sing the June Bug
Wing Solo, composed by himself. Dizzy had heard his father practising
the accompaniment; and the melody and words kept running through Dizzy's
head somewhat like this:
The June Bug Wing Solo
"Crack! Crack! my brittle wing,"
Is all I ever sing,
Tho' I've almost always said,
When I've struck my little head,
That I'm angry, with a buzz, buzz, buzz.
"Crack! Crack! my brittle wing,"
Be careful how you fling
Where the dusty little Toad,
Is still sitting on the road,
Waiting for you, with a gulp, gulp, gulp.
How distinctly Dizzy could still hear Father Buzz linger over the last
line with so much feeling, and with what terror he thought of all the
dangers that might befall him.
Round and round the room Dizzy flew, scattering silver hairs from his
lacy wings, each moment his head growing heavier. For an instant there
was a tiny flash of light and the faint noise of a shrivelling wing.
Half of Dizzy's wing had been burned off. What would Flutter think now
of the blackened silver wing of her brother! Down went Dizzy, his good
wing beating helplessly upon the window sill Flutter and Mother Moth
were in his mind. The cool air blew in through the shutter, which a few
minutes before had closed upon him.
But, wonderful Providence a big white hand opened the shutter and gently
brushed out Dizzy. He had learned his lesson, and Mother Moth did not
speak one reproachful word, as with dragging wing he hobbled into the
little birch-leaf home. Father Buzz, however, was heard singing in an
undertone these words to one of the melodies in the Cob-Web Symphony.
Teach many things!"