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May 23, 2013 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Shadow prince

The heady gardenia smell made him hungry.

(But just about everything did these days)

Imagination can sweeten reality (Gingerbread House in Efteling, Netherlands/ Rex/

Imagination can sweeten reality.
(Efteling Gingerbread House/Rex/

Oddly reminded him of warm-right-out-of-the-oven cookies.

That trick used by people selling houses to convince a buyer this could be home.

Sweet. Warm. Comforting.

Dandelions in the grass. Maybe? Those were supposed to be edible.

But it was a nice neighborhood. Better not. They put stuff on their lawns.

1908 14 yrs mill worker (LW Hine National Child labor:Library of Congress.nclc.01420: US public domain:

Old enough to be on his own. 14 yrs. 1908
(Library of Congress.nclc.01420/US public domain/

He sighed.

Nudged the fence plank again. It swung loose just enough.

The dog barking was in the distance.

Nothing stirring here. Better risk it.

Soon the early joggers would be out. The kids headed to school.

Those generally didn’t worry him so much –

Too busy to notice an invisible nobody in the shadows

Dog and dog walkers were a different story.

Dog owners noticed changes.

Dog were nosy. Had teeth.

Life on the road is full of dangers (1889 Blue Fairy Book. Maragna,Lang, illustrated by HJ Ford/ US public domain: publication date/ artist life+100/

Alone. Unable to trust anyone or anything
(1889 Blue Fairy Book.illustrations:HJ Ford/US public domain:publication date/artist life+100/

He inched warily through the gap.

Ah, close enough to paradise.

A splash pool recently filled.

(Oh, heaven to be clean again. Dew soaked grass makes a poor washrag)

He caught a quick movement out of the corner of his eye.

Tensed to leap to safely through his improvised gate.

Only a cat. Glaring through a window.

Not a real threat, but meant those in the house would be moving around soon

Time to make a decision:  go or hold up somewhere here until night?

Almost made order: a small shed. Open and almost new.

Ah. A clean floor up off the ground.

Careful not to disturb the spider web near the entrance.

Boxes and garden supplies wiggled a bit to create a cave behind them in the corner.

A little shiver with the memory of that last place.

Primitive, but he had made it cozy with found stuff.

Sadly, it wasn’t water proof.

Only able to take so much ankle-deep water and mud.

Dark clouds wouldn’t worry him now.

1892 Grimm Fairy Tale (US public domain: expired copyright/ artist life+70/ reprod of PD art/

Sweet dreams. Circumstances create the oddest friendships.
(1892 Grimm Fairy Tale/US public domain: expired copyright/ artist life+70/ reprod of PD art/

Snug, dry, and comfy.

Vague memories of fairy tales, castles, moats, and escape tunnels

Tired eyes shut during his own soft version of a lullaby.

Safely sheltered.

He wouldn’t mind if a princess never kissed him.

Not the way to make friends. (1909.Frog Prince. Grimm Fairy tale.Rackham(1867-1939) illustration/ US public domain.expired copyright/publication

Not the way to make friends, Molly
(1909.Frog Prince. Grimm Fairy tale.Rackham(1867-1939) illustration/ US public domain.expired copyright/publication

Nooooo, Molly! Nooooo. Put the frog dooooowwwwn.

If the frog wants to live in the watering can , he’s welcome.

Leave the frog alooooone!

Good dog.

(About time dog house used for something. Halfway house for the homeless. Appropriate.)

Nooooooo, Molly. No dog kisses. Frog breath. Frog breath!

Deal! A lovely condo in trade for mosquito control. (1874 Frog4.Walter Crane,1845-1915. Us public domain: artist life+90/reprod of PD art/

OK, deal. The lovely doghouse condo in trade for mosquito control.
(1874 Frog4.Walter Crane,1845-1915. Us public domain: artist life+90/reprod of PD art/

And they all lived happily ever after.

(No one croaked.)

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Read More: The Frog Prince fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm.

Frog in residence.

Toad in residence.


  1. Ally Bean / May 23 2013 1:51 pm

    So Molly has the opportunity to kiss a frog & you’ve discouraged it, huh? As much as I want to believe in fairy tales, I wouldn’t like frog breath either. Good call on your part.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 3:23 pm

      We’d seen the prince a couple of times behind plants, but Molly snatched him up one day and plopped him out on the patio to see if he’d play. She’s amazingly gentle with little things….except worms…something about worms. The prince has obstacle course at the front of his home, now – and a series of escape routes behind plants. We look for him at night before letting Molly roam. So the prince is pretty happy with his realm.
      Thanks for hopping over


  2. aFrankAngle / May 23 2013 1:59 pm

    At least Molly didn’t eat vagrant seeking shelter.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 3:24 pm

      Poor Molly only wants a friend….maybe she’s seen too much of Disney Cinderella, and Snow WHite movies? Thanks for hopping along


  3. anyone4curryandotherthings / May 23 2013 2:07 pm

    I love it! You really made me smile – thanks.


  4. susielindau / May 23 2013 2:32 pm

    I Love the frog’s POV!


  5. robstroud / May 23 2013 2:52 pm

    Our poor border collie had a seizure-like experience when we were stationed in Guam and the vet said it was most likely from coming into contact with a frog that possessed neuro-toxins as a protection mechanism. Best to beware!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 3:36 pm

      Do you remember a few years back when health departments issue warnings against the practice of licking some species of frogs on the head in order to get high?
      Frog defense against disappointed princesses?
      When I was growing up adults always cautioned newcomers that if the dog suddenly started spitting and foamed at the mouth in the summer – it was because the dog tried to eat a local frog….dogs really did foam a bit…but stopped eating frogs quickly.
      Glad your pup survived. (Shiver) THanks for hopping over


  6. PiedType / May 23 2013 3:59 pm

    You had me guessing on this one, and left me smiling. Glad you caught Molly before Molly caught him. The little guy meant no harm, but he best find another yard. Perhaps you showed him the way?


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 3:38 pm

      The prince is pretty determined. He’s learned to hide until dark – and where all the nooks between plants are. He really does live in the watering can spout…inches way back in there…so now we don’t have a watering can….thanks for keeping things hopping


  7. Madame Weebles / May 23 2013 6:30 pm

    I love how you do these, knitting all these neat images to create a story. I’m glad froggie was okay at the end.


  8. heretherebespiders / May 23 2013 10:53 pm

    Brings me back to our beginnings when I scratched my head until the end 🙂


  9. reneejohnsonwrites / May 24 2013 2:09 am

    Had to laugh. Gretel picked one up once and promptly spit it back out, running her tongue in and out as it trying to get the nasty taste out of her mouth. One time was enough for her. We have so many frogs – with the ponds I suppose – that they have literally stopped traffic with people staring at the hoards of them headed for the lights.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:21 pm

      Usually one frog/toad is enough…that tongue! Didn’t seem to faze Molly – she’s so forgiving…and the frog hops so well. We’ve arranged flower pot groupings for escape routes. OUr neighbor has a large fish pond and they have a full chorus at night.
      Thanks for hopping along


  10. EllaDee / May 24 2013 2:52 am

    From a dog house to a frog house… cool. I hope froggy stays and makes a hoppy home there 🙂 I love it when frogs hang out, although I did evict one who took over residence of the inside of our house at Taylors Arm in our absence… frog slime it not good decor.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:23 pm

      Even if they offer to take care of insects, indoor frogs not requested.(Stepping on one in the middle of the night would be scary for both)
      So far the prince has figured out how to time forays into the yard at night between Molly visits…he just fits in the downspout of the gutters, too in emergencies. Thanks for hopping over to chat


  11. Sunshine / May 24 2013 4:53 am

    aww, shucks…Molly just trying to help a prince get started. ☺ but wait, you say it is a toad? no foaming of the mouth for Molly??


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:25 pm

      That Molly is everyone’s friend…but not sure the prince wanted a lift. She’s still sniffing around saying the offer is good anytime. Thanks for joining the frog and toad chorus


  12. The Hook / May 24 2013 11:10 am

    And from that day forward, fairy tales were never the same again.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:26 pm

      And not sure the toad will ever be the same again either…although he seems slow in learning the lesson…we have to turn on the light and give him a heads up at night before letting Molly outside….he’s learned to dive for cover. Thanks for dreaming along


  13. gingerfightback / May 24 2013 3:46 pm

    Froggy went a courtin’ by the sounds of it


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:28 pm

      And the bride took him up on the offer – much to his surprise. He’s regrouping and rethinking the situation. Thanks for nudging that song over here


  14. jmmcdowell / May 25 2013 1:48 am

    Frogs and toads are great to have in the yard. They earn their keep by keeping down those mosquito numbers! I’ve always been happy to let them find a home in my gardens. 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:37 pm

      Toads have always been welcomed guests. Have to careful that dog water isn’t too deep in case the little ones get stuck in the bowl. And we just need Molly to keep mouth off! Looks like your frogs and toads won’t get too chilly this weekend. Have a great time.


  15. jannatwrites / May 25 2013 6:19 am

    No one croaked…hahaha! I imagine a frog must be careful hopping through suburban neighborhoods…lots of dangers there. The dog house converts nicely to a frog house, if your guest decides to stay for a bit 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 25 2013 8:52 pm

      The prince is comfortable installed in the watering can that is sitting on its’ side….if you pick it up, he scoots up into the spout…so we aren’t using the watering can at this time. Guests welcomed! Glad you stopped by to chat


  16. shoreacres / May 26 2013 12:17 pm

    I love ’em all – tree frogs, bull frogs, spring peepers. I’ll never forget the first time I met a tree frog, over in Louisiana. So much noise from something only an inch long! But the people who owned the house where they were congregating allowed as they had one great advantage. They tended ot hang out under the eaves, and out of reach of the dogs. 😉


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 26 2013 1:22 pm

      I haven’t seen many of the tiny little pale frogs so far. Those are the ones that get stuck in the dog bowl overnight. Maybe they are waiting for the larger toad to establish ground rules with Molly? The house across the street have a big fish pond – and the frogs have discovered it – they really can get loud.Thanks for hopping over with a comment



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