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  • Come listen my children and you’ll be told of a runaway child with hair of gold. Long flowing hair that hung down to her socks. A pretty young thing with a rather bad habit of opening locks on the doors of houses and homes and cabins and shacks then looting the contents ere the owners came back.

    You talk about me as if I’m a bad thing! You don’t understand and that’s truly a sad thing!

    O spare me your nonsense you blonde ding-a-ling! You break into houses that aren’t yours! You strike when the owners have gone to the store. It happened again just yesterday. You broke in the bear’s house when they were away. You picked the lock as easy as that then sauntered right in. You arrogant brat!

    That’s not how it happened! You’ve got it all wrong. You’re just making things up to fit into this song! You folks should know this guy’s a fake! He’ll tell you a lie for the sheer sake of seeing you swallow the tale. He concocts all his stories while drinking brown ale! He’s constantly drunk as a skunk! Isn’t that true?

    Gadzooks my fine strumpet! This tale’s about you and your wild misspent youth! Don’t bamboozle these people by spouting untruth! You burgled the bear’s house! Admit it forsooth!

    I’ll admit no such thing you uncouth narrator. Why do you torment me? I went to the bear’s house to see if they’d rent me a room or perhaps a small flat. Their home is quite large and I’d heard tell they do that for single young girls like myself.

    Yeah right! Now you’ll probably tell me an elf let you in and told you to sit on a chair at the table. You’re so full of lies and gross fabrications and falsehoods, deceits and misinformation.

    O please! O please! You snide little man! Lets get on with this fable. That is if you can shut up for a minute or two. You’re so full of yourself! It just so happens the elf is a friend of the bear’s and a pal of mine too!

    I knew that she’d say that! Hah! Didn’t you? But I interrupted my dear. Pray continue!

    Where was I? It seems I’ve forgotten my place. No. No, don’t remind me. I’ll recall it myself. Ah yes, I was saying how the elf let me inside the bear’s house on the day in question since it seems like some louse has been out spreading gossip. Now I’ll tell my own version in order to stop it!

    Without further ado or undue delay we now take you back to that most fateful day when Goldie entered the bear’s house while they were away!

    O goody! A flashback! I like them a lot. They put a rather nice spin on the plot.

    Just shut up and flashback you sly little fox! Show everyone here how you open the locks on the houses then waltz right on in.

    Come off it already. That’s not how it went. I’d come to the bears’ house a room for to rent. But the bears had gone out they were nowhere about. I called out their names. I started to shout.

    “Hello! Hello! Is anyone home?”

    At that very moment a wee little gnome peeped his head out the door and said, “ Go away! The bears aren’t here! They’ve moved out of town. Won’t be back for a year!”

    The bears moved out of town? How can that be? What of the room they promised to rent me?

    The three bears that live here rent you a room? My dear that’s absurd! You must be a loon to think that the bears would lease outside their species! It’s simply not done!

    O drat! Mr. Elf you’re ruining my fun. I’ve seen many houses and this is the one! I want so much to live here! This place is it! I’ve brought all this money to make a deposit!

    What did you say? You’ve money in there? Why not rent from an elf? If you’d rent from a bear then you must ask yourself, “If I’m leasing this room and the plumbing won’t work would a bear be a good landlord or simply a jerk that just collects rent? When you lease from an elf of course things will be different. You see elves are quite helpful, considerate and kind. We’re very good landlords so if you don’t mind I’ll take that deposit down to the bank. No, no it’s all right. Don’t bother to thank me! Give me the cash! I’ll be off right away and come back in a flash!"

    Then lickety split the elf ran away!

    Goldie just stood there. She spoke not a word but waited a while. After a moment a larcenous smile crossed her face and she said to herself,

    “Ha! That greedy old elf! He fell for my gag! There’s nothing but trinkets inside of that bag! Paperclips! Thumbtacks! Some pennies and trash! He certainly won’t find any cash! That’s for sure! Oh my! He forgot to properly latch the front door! I'll let myself in. I’m tired of waiting out here anymore."

    So that’s how it happened. As you can see there’s a good explanation how I came to be inside the bears’ house while they were away!

    Come come, Goldie Lockpick! Do you mean to say that a felonious elf stole your purse on that fraptious day and you simply decided to stay in the house for what? Until the elf returned to give you the key? You expect me to buy this incredible tale? It sounds like a lie! That’s just my opinion of course but I …

    It’s my story! Every word of it’s true and I’m sticking to it no matter what any old narrator thinks. In my opinion your opinion stinks! Now sit down and shut up! Make that clickety-clack sound effect for me we’re gonna flashback.

    And so once again without undue delay, in order to ramp up the arc of this play, Return with us now to that fateful day when Goldie entered the bears’ house while they were away.

    Thank you, my dear. That really was nice.

    Yes it was, wasn’t it? Shall I do it twice?

    Don’t push your luck dude! You know it’s not nice to use my praise of you as a simple device to finish your rhyme.

    I know that my love but it’s done all the time. You’re acting as if I’ve committed a crime when you are the one who stands here accused! A poor little girl with long flaxen hair…

    Who never could ever would dream of hurting a bear! After that elf ran off with my purse I wandered inside I’d never felt worse. I fussed and I fretted. I pulled on my hair. I needed to think so I sat in a chair but it was too hard. So I sat in another but it was too soft! An uncomfortable Mother Bear chair if ever there was! It had no support! Made my back stiff and tight so I sat in the smallest chair and that one felt right!

    You sat in a chair because you needed to think? I don’t believe it! I need a drink!

    My lords and my ladies it should be a crime when a narrator spends all of his time interrupting and drinking and causing me stress. You’ve no idea what I go through but I digress.

    Digress all you like it won’t change the fact that you broke in the bears’ house then ransacked the place. Go ahead. Digress ‘til you’re blue in the face!

    As I was saying I found a nice chair. I sat myself down and right then and there I realized how very tired I was. My head it was aching, and so were my feet. The entire day long I’d had nothing to eat since breakfast that morning when I ate a few rolls. Just then on the counter I noticed some bowls left out there no doubt so the contents could cool. It was right ugly slop. I think it was gruel.

    Was it grey slimy stuff that looked gross and horrid? I know what that was. They call that junk porridge!

    Whatever it was I just didn’t care. I figured if it was good enough for a bear how bad could it be? Well! The first bowl I tried that nearly was it! I almost threw up! The taste was like shoe leather! YUK! It was bad! It was the worst tasting swill that I’d ever had. I scooped a spoon from each bowl and put each spoonful back. The taste was so bad I wanted to gack.

    I’ve eaten porridge myself! I know what you mean. I found the taste to be downright obscene! But, the porridge I ate was cooked by my Mom! I didn’t break into some stranger’s home and glom onto their food then bad mouth the taste! You know what I think? I think that you cased the joint for something to steal. You’re just making this up about needing a meal. Come on, Goldie Lockpick! Tell us all the real reason you broke in that place!

    God’s teeth! Lord narrator! Get off of my case! I will admit that if I ran this place you would be fired! So get out of my face!

    Get on with the story! Cut to the chase!

    All right all ready! Give me a break! I just lost my place! For the sake of my sanity please shut your face!

    Lets see… I said how the porridge nearly made me get sick. But I didn’t. I just put down the spoon and left that room quick. By now quite some time had gone past. I thought that surely the Elf would come back at last.

    The Elf was named “Shirley’? Why didn’t you say? Just last December I worked in a play with an Elf named Big Shirley! I think that was her name. I wonder if she’s the same…

    AUGH! If you don’t stop it I’ll go insane! These cheap jokes of yours give me a pain in the --- Ask anyone here! You ought to get fired. Well anyway the elf never came back and I got really tired.

    Don’t tell me the rest. I can figure it out. You got very sleepy so you wandered throughout the Bears’ house until you found a soft bed, a nice place to nap and rest your poor head.
    Why how did you guess? You must have been there!

    I certainly was. You see I am the Bear whose house you did enter. It never occurred to me you were a renter. I thought that you worked with that burglar the Elf!

    Shirley? I swear that I never saw her before and I hope that I never see her again. But say, Mr. Bear do you still have a yen to rent me that room?

    Are you kidding? Va Va Va Voom!

    And so we arrive at the end of the poem. Goldie moved into Mr. Bear’s home. There they did live as playmates and friends. For the sake of propriety that’s where this tale ends!
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