Assign to each of eight people one of the following characters. Whenever one’s character is mentioned in the story, he is supposed to repeat the sounds here given.
The story-teller should pause a moment after the mention of a character in the reading.
At the end of the story, all perform in unison.
1. Sweet Young Thing: “Tee-hee-hee.”
2. Strong Young Chap: Sings a bar of “Ah, Sweet Mystery of Life.”
3. Canary in the Cage: “T w i t t e r. twitter.”
4. Cat on the Hearth: “Prrow.”
5. Dark and Stormy Night: “Hoo-oo-oo.”
6. Dying Dog: “Ki-yi.”
7. Cruel Old Father: “Gr-humph.”
8. Gray Ghost: “O-o-oh.”
Once upon a time a sweet young thing was in love with a strong young chap. But she had a cruel old father who opposed their marriage.
One Hallowe’en night the sweet young thing was sitting in her parlor, with the canary warbling in the cage and the cat dozing on the hearth. It was a dark and stormy night. Hearing a strange noise outside, the sweet young thing went to the door. There in the yard lay a. poor, dying dog.
“Oh,” said the sweet young thing, “I will bring him in where it is warm and will give him something to eat.”
“No, you don’t,” growled her cruel, old father, appearing at just that moment. “Let dying dogs lie.” And he compelled the sweet young thing to return to the parlor with the canary in ,the cage and the cat on the hearth. Through the chimney she could hear the howl of the wind on this dark and stormy night. Suddenly there came a knock at the door, and the strong young chap entered.
“I have come to take you to marry me,” cried the strong young chap.
“Goody-goody,” laughed the sweet young thing.
“No, you don’t,” growled her cruel old father. “You can’t marry my daughter. Get out.”
And the sweet young thing began to weep. And so did the canary in the cage, and the cat on the hearth, and the dying
“Oh, what shall I do?” cried the sweet young thing. At that instant the lights went out, and down the chimney came the gray ghost.
“I’m going to get you,” the gray ghost whispered, Hoating toward the cruel old father.
“Help-oh, don’t-” screamed the cruel old father as the gray ghost touched him, and he sat down and behaved himself.
“At last you’re mine,” the strong young chap cried joyfully.
And then the sweet young thing, and the strong young chap, and the cruel old father, and the canary in the cage, and the cat on the hearth, and the dark and stormy night, and the dying dog, and the gray ghost, all of them together laughed and laughed and laughed.