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THE LITTLEST MAPLE TREE

In the BIG  deep forest, where there were many, many great big trees, there was a little maple tree.  It only had 3 branches and they were very small.  It  almost never saw the sun  or sky because of all the great big trees that crowded around it.  The great big trees would sometime laugh at it.  Sometime they would call it funny names. 

Sometime it would cry.

Birds never built nests in its small little branches.   Caterpillars never made tents.  When people walked through the big forest, they always touched the great big trees, because they couldn’t see the littlest one.

All summer long the littlest maple stood alone, wishing it would get bigger so that it could feel some of the rain or wind or sun on its branches.

And during the fall, the littlest tree had only three leaves on its tiny branches, brown, yellow and orange.. 

Then one day, something strange happened.  The littlest  tree looked up through all the great big  tree branches, and saw something white and fluffy falling from the sky.  It fell on its little branches.

“What is this” he asked in a very frightened voice.

“THAT IS SNOW’ howled the great big trees.  “IT WILL COVER US ALL FOR THE WINTER.”

The little tree didn’t think he liked snow.  It made him cold.

One day the littlest maple heard a sound that was very scary.

“What is that sound?”  he asked the great big trees.

Again they all laughed.

“YOU SILLY LITTLE TREE.  THEY ARE PEOPLE.  THEY COME EVERY YEAR  AND TAKE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL OF US TO THEIR HOMES WHERE THEY DRESS US UP IN BEAUTIFUL COLORS AND LIGHTS.  THEY FEED US AND WARM US BY THEIR FIREPLACE.  AND THEN WHEN THEIR SEASON IS OVER, THEY PLANT US AGAIN, IN FRONT OF THEIR HOMES WHERE WE LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER 

“Oh” said the littlest tree.  “I want to go with them.  I am cold and lonely.

“YOU?”  they all laughed.  “YOU ARE TOO LITTLE.  YOU HAVE NO BRANCHES.  THEY DON’T  WANT YOU.’

The littlest tree began to cry, and  tears ran down its tiny little tree truck, plink, plink, plink. 

All of the great big trees began to busy themselves so as to look their best.  They fluffed out their branches and stood straight and tall.

The little tiny tree had not too many branches to fluff, and couldn’t stand straight and tall.  The little tiny tree felt ashamed and very ugly.

“Sarah, what about this nice big tree?”  said a loud sound.

“Or this,”  said a soft sound.  “It is not as big.  It will look just right  when it is decorated.”

Sarah looked up at all the great big trees.  She walked and walked and looked and looked.

“No,” said the littlest sound.  “I want this one.”

And there, right in front of  her stood the littlest maple.

“No” said the loud sound ”  “It is not big enough. It has no branches.”
 
“It has three,” replied the littlest sound.  “Oh, please Poppa.  I want this one.”

“But it isn’t the right kind of tree to use for Christmas.” said the soft sound   “It will look stupid.”

“But Momma”, cried the littlest sound.  “I will make it beautiful.  It will be the most beautiful tree we’ve ever had!  And when we plant it in the yard it will grow.  And when it grows I will swing on its branches.  I will sit under its shade.  I will rake its golden leaves. 

“All right” said the loud, deep sound.

And that’s how the littlest maple tree got to stand beside the warm fireplace, looking at the snow falling outside.

On his tiny little branches were the most beautiful colors he had ever seen.  He was draped  with a  beautiful strand of silver garland, and twinkling colored lights. And wrapped around his tiny little trunk were lots of wonderfully wrapped gifts of all sizes.

And a little girl, fast asleep.