The Three Laughs

The Three Laughs

Jewish (Hasidic - Poland)

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When the Baal Shem Tov laughs three times during the Sabbath meal, his disciples ask him to explain. He was inspired by an elderly bookbinder who sang and danced on the Sabbath in celebration of his many years of marriage. The man is recognized for celebrating his true love for his wife, even if on […]

The Three Dolls

A Persian folk tale as retold by David Heathfield

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The Sultan of Persia was a clever man – well read. And there was nothing he loved more than solving problems, puzzles, riddles. One day, he received a parcel; he knew not from whom. He opened that package and found a box. And when he opened the lid of the box, inside were the three […]

The Three Brothers and the Golden Apple

A Bulgarian Tale

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There was a woman with three sons. Although they were poor, they had one treasure: in their little yard grew a most wondrous apple tree. Every year, it bore but a single fruit – an apple of the purest gold. However, the family had never had the joy of picking the tree’s gift, as every […]

The Sun and the Moon

A folktale from the Philippines

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The Sun and the Moon were married, but the Sun was very ugly and quarrelsome. One day he became angry at the Moon and started to chase her. She ran very fast until she was some distance ahead of him, when she grew tired and he almost caught her. Ever since he has been chasing […]

The Strange Visitor

From When The Lights Go Out: Twenty Scary Tales To Tell by Margaret Read MacDonald

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There was an old woman sat all alone in her cabin one night spinning her wool. And so she sat, and so she spun, and so she waited for someone to come. Then there came a knocking on the door. Come in! Called the old woman. Screeeeak went the door. And in came a pair […]

The Story of Lightning and Thunder

A Nigerian Folktale

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In the olden days the thunder and lightning lived on the earth amongst all the other people, but the king made them live at the far end of the town, as far as possible from other people’s houses. The thunder was an old mother sheep, and the lightning was her son, a ram. Whenever the […]

The Sticky Sticky Pine

A Japanese tale

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Once there was a woodcutter. He was very poor but very kind. Never would he tear off the living branches of a tree to make firewood.  Instead he would gather only the dead branches on the ground.  He knew what happened when you tore a branch off a tree. The sap, which is the blood […]

The Stars in the Cottonwood Trees

Plains Indians: Cheyenne and Arapaho

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All things come from Mother-earth. Stars are no exception. They form secretly in the earth and then drift along just under the surface until they find the roots of the magical Cottonwood tree. They enter the roots and slowly work their way up through the tree. Finally they come to rest in the small twigs […]

The Starfish

Adapted from the story by Loren Eisley

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One morning a man was walking down a beach that was covered in dying starfish. The tide the night before had been especially strong and thousands of starfish had been washed up on shore, too far up for them to make it back into the water by themselves. The man shook his head as he […]

The Spirit of the Corn

An Iroquois Legend

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There was a time, says the Iroquois grandmother, when it was not needful to plant the corn seed nor to hoe the fields, for the corn sprang up of itself, and filled the broad meadows. Its stalks grew strong and tall, and were covered with leaves like waving banners, and filled with ears of pearly […]

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