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The Thistle Doll




There was once a small young girl called Runa . Her parents had died long ago, and she was in the service of a wealthy farmer . The world treated her cruelly. Everyone was unkind to her, and no one took her side when there was a dispute.

One night, when she was very, very sad, she went out into the garden . There she saw that in the cup of each of the flowers there danced a pretty little fairy . "Come and dance with us!" cried the golden-haired fairy of the sunflower . "We are the spirits of the flowers." The little girl needed no persuading, and she danced with them till morning light . From then on her heart was not so heavy.

Now the farmer began to wonder how it was that the girl was so tired every morning , and one night he kept watch on the porch.
When the moon and stars came out he saw Runa slip out of the window, as quiet as a mouse . Right away he took hold of her firmly. But Runa called on her friends for help: "Sunflower fairy, golden Sunflower fairy, come to poor Runa's aid!" And at that the sunflower fairy turned Runa into a prickly thistle , which punctured the farmer's hand until it began to bleed.
From then on little Runa remained enchanted.

To this day, when the thistle is in flower, out of it steps a tiny doll in a blue ruffled dress , and dances with the other fairies beneath the starry sky . She is no longer alone, and no one is unkind to her any more. And when the flowers are gone, the air fills with thistledown, as if snow were falling.
This is the thistle doll, Runa, sending her message of comfort to all the sad children around the world.
~The End





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