Thursday, December 5. 2013
Once upon a time there lived an iwi chieftain who had three sons. The eldest son was very strong. His name was Kaitiaki. The second son was very clever. His name was Hoturapa. Those two were rivals. The youngest son was neither strong nor clever, but he was kindhearted. His name was Maui. Maui was scorned by the others, who never let him join in their adventures. Continue reading "MAUI AND THE TANIWHA by Lucy Rogers" »
Wednesday, December 4. 2013
Once upon a time a weka lived with his brothers in a swamp not far from a dark forest. He was a cheeky fellow, sharp-eyed and quick, and always ready to help himself to whatever he saw in front of him. One day he grew bored of the swamp, realising he was no more sharp-eyed or quick than any of his brothers, and that he had found everything there was to be found there, so he left his family in the swamp to go exploring. Continue reading "THE WEKA by Tim Robinson" »
Tuesday, December 3. 2013
Once upon a time there was a sole parent who lived in a hill suburb bungalow. Paint was peeling off the weatherboards but the house was brightened by the woman’s preferred plants, a kowhai tree and fuchsia bush, one each side of the front door. With her, lived her two daughters, Kowhai-Gold and Magenta-Red, so named for their mother’s favourite flowers. Continue reading "KOWHAI-GOLD AND MAGENTA-RED by Ann Horner" »
Monday, December 2. 2013
Once upon a time there lived a mother, a father, a brother and a sister.
Now, times were tough and work, money and food itself were scarce. One evening, the boy sat huddled next to his sister in the shadows, hoping a little of the heat from the small fire below might reach them and warm their bones. They sat there, listening, listening - ears straining into the darkness. If they'd been able to sleep despite the cold, despite the ache in their insides, the tension in that house would yet have kept them awake, eyes wide, heads cocked.
Continue reading "ONE M TOO MANY or WHERE'S THE FAIRY GODMOTHER..." »
Sunday, December 1. 2013
Once upon a time a farmer lived with her son Ben. Twelve days before Christmas, Ben sat at the desktop in the farm office. He surfed the great web of faces and voices which connects all people. Quite by chance he found a beautiful princess. Her name was Hilda. She was sad because her parents had died. Now she had to live with her aunt who kept her locked up in a high tower. Continue reading "THE CHRISTMAS TREE by Peter Rawnsley" »
Saturday, November 30. 2013
Once upon a time, not so long ago, it was lambing time in the South Island of New Zealand.
On the lower foothills of the Southern Alps, during spring, the ewe Sunshine gave birth to triplet lambs. She called them Blossom, Dewdrop and Snowy. The triplets were very adorable and they enjoyed a carefree lamb-hood. They woke up serenaded by the sounds of tui and bell-bird and they danced and played around in the daffodil meadow. Whenever they were hungry or thirsty, they nursed on Sunshine, who loved them to bits.
Continue reading "THE WILD BOAR AND THE THREE LITTLE LAMBS by..." »
Friday, November 29. 2013
Once upon a time there was a young man called Hans Zimmermann. He lived in Hameln, a small town in Germania. Hans came to the end of his three year apprenticeship in carpentry. He had built many wooden houses, wooden staircases and wooden roofs. You name it, Hans had built it! Continue reading "HANS THE HAPPY WANDERER by Pī" »
Thursday, November 28. 2013
Once upon a time a small girl stamped her feet and cried a bucketful of tears. Why? Because her mother who she thought loved no one but her, announced that she was getting married. “Tama is my prince,” her mother sighed. “He is always helping people; he is handsome, romantic, as strong as a giant bull and as gentle as a flimsy butterfly. He guides people over tall mountains, and tells them stories about wild life and the bush. He is everything that we could want in a husband and father.
Continue reading "BOSSY BIRD by Anne McDonell" »
Wednesday, November 27. 2013
Once upon a time in old Russia, lived Natasha and her sister, Sonya.
On Natasha’s birthday, Sonya and her friends planned a surprise party in the forest.
Her friends burst out of the bushes shouting, “Happy Birthday, Natasha!” Delighted by her surprise, Natasha danced for joy and they sat down to enjoy a picnic.
Continue reading "THE MAGIC CLOAK by Brian Brodie" »
Tuesday, November 26. 2013
Once upon a time, a very, VERY long time ago, all the animals lived together, Some spent most of their time in the forest, while others stayed in the sea for a great deal of the day. But they had no special homes of their own, and so they went about their daily affairs with all the other animals around them. Continue reading "ANIMAL LAND by John Newman" »
Monday, November 25. 2013
Once upon a time, not so very long ago, a happy couple lived in a cottage at the foot of Mount Manaia. Every day, after they came home from work, they would walk together through the bush and up the hill, pulling out gorse seedlings and pampas grass, and listening to the whistle-gurgle-chuckle of the tui and the whoosh-kerthump of the kereru. One warm evening, as they sat close together on the great roots of an ancient puriri tree, the wife said to the husband, “We are almost perfectly happy. If only we had a baby, our life would be perfect.”
Continue reading "THE KERERU OF MOUNT MANAIA by Ann Willman" »
Sunday, November 24. 2013
Once upon a time there were three brothers who lived in a land of small and rainy islands far from anywhere. Each of the brothers had been given great gifts at birth.
The eldest brother was given a herd of golden cows that produced milk more delicious than any other and a flock of golden sheep that grew wool more gloriously warm and soft than any other.
Continue reading "THE THREE RICH BROTHERS by Beth Braddock" »
Saturday, November 23. 2013
Once upon a time in a long land of white topped mountains and emerald islands lying along the bottom of the world in the turquoise sea, there lived a family of four children; three boys and a girl, now grown up adults who one day suspended belief.
Continue reading "THE LONG WHITE CLOUD by Shensu" »
Friday, November 22. 2013
Once upon a time a young pig-hunter set out to see the world. He tucked his long hunting knife into his leather belt and pulled on a thick bush shirt. Then he travelled far and wide and had many adventures while the cold winter days melted into the softness of spring, and then into the heat of summer. One New Year’s Eve he travelled towards a town along a gravelled road lined with small, white wooden crosses, yet when he arrived within the town he found the whole place decked out in black.
Continue reading "THE PIG-HUNTER by Nanette Monin" »
Thursday, November 21. 2013
Once upon a time in a land by the very end of the world there lived an industrious people in a beautiful mountain valley at the edge of a powerful kingdom. The extensive forest yielded many fruits, nuts, leaves, roots and flowers which the people and the abundant birds used for food; an excess was traded with those beyond the valley. Numerous fish were in the rivers which flowed crystal clear from the slopes. Gold was a very useful item for the local crafters and for trade. It was claimed that the valley held large quantities of other valuable resources too. The people lived in harmony with their world.
Continue reading "AHMIRU’S BIRDS by Norman Tolra" »
Wednesday, November 20. 2013
Once upon a time a pretty young woman became separated from her tribe while on a fishing expedition far, far from home.
Kaea hummed happily to herself as she tied fat, slippery eels onto her flax twine.
She did not hear the call telling the fishing party to stop and turn for home.
Before leaving everyone was warned to stay close because whanau [family members] had mysteriously “disappeared”.
Continue reading "KAEA AND KOPUWAI THE TANIWHA by Queenie Rikihana" »
Tuesday, November 19. 2013
Monday, November 18. 2013
Once upon a time there lived a hard-working farmer. One day the farmer was out ploughing in a field when he came across a baby. As he looked down at the sleeping child, lying peacefully amongst the soil, he loved her instantly. The farmer took the infant home and raised her as his own, naming her Whenua Pākākā, after the brown earth she had come from.
Continue reading "WHENUA PAKAKA by Chloe Winstanley" »
Sunday, November 17. 2013
Once upon a time, there lived a family of the quietest birds on earth! The family of four was made up of Mum, Dad, a son called Martay and Anoma, their only daughter. Anoma was special – very special ! Since her mother had got older and wasn’t able to lay any more eggs, Anoma was the only female Moa left in the country. In fact, Anoma’s family was the only family of Moas left in the world ! No-one knew they existed. Continue reading "ANOMA THE MOA by Damian Peters" »
Saturday, November 16. 2013
(based on the Brother’s Grimm fairytale “Die Sechs Schwäne”)
Once upon a time, there was a Chief on his way home and had to travel through an enchanted forest. He could not get through, when he met an old crone sitting under a tree. The old crone said she could get him through the enchanted forest if he married her beautiful daughter. The Chief was desperate to get home to his children and agreed to meet the old crone’s daughter. She was indeed beautiful, but cold and the Chief had an ominous feeling. With a heavy heart and great misgivings he agreed and took the old crone’s daughter with him to his main Pa.
Continue reading "THE SIX TUIS by Tatjana Jacobi" »
Friday, November 15. 2013
“Once upon a time – “
“No! No, Mum. That’s not how you say it. Say it right.” He looked up at her, his cherubic face screwed up accusingly.
“Ok. Once apont a tont,” Katrina paused to smile down at her son who, satisfied, closed his eyes, “there was a wee boy with blonde curly hair and a bad grasp of English which caused his mother, an English teacher, no end of grief (his bad English, not him).”
Continue reading "LACHLAN GOLD by Frances Duncan" »
Thursday, November 14. 2013
Once upon a time a great chief lay dying, and he called his three daughters to his bedside and said "Before I return to the underworld, let me grant you each one wish." The two older daughters straight away cried, "Oh let us be the most beautiful girls in all the land", but the youngest pleaded, "please father, let me be strong."
Continue reading "THE BIRD-MAIDEN AND THE TANIWHA by Bex Ansell" »
Wednesday, November 13. 2013
A Reimagining of Grimm’s “The Juniper Tree”
Once upon a time, a young couple moved into their first house with plans to raise a large family. The first thing the wife did to make the house their home was plant a kauri sapling in the corner of the back yard. She dreamt of burying at its base the placentas that would nourish each of their babies. Although there were many pregnancies, there were never any births and the couple grew long-faced and grey while the kauri tree grew big and strong, with each miscarriage being laid to rest amongst its roots.
Continue reading "THE KAURI TREE by Fiona Tyson" »
Tuesday, November 12. 2013
Once upon a time, in a nest under the roots of a rimu tree, an ivory-white egg was hatched. First a beak appeared then, after much wriggling about, the outer shell broke and a little brown kiwi chick was born. Her parents were overjoyed, they named her Tika* and loved her dearly. Continue reading "THE LITTLE BROWN KIWI THAT FLEW by Maureen Skinner" »
Monday, November 11. 2013
Make a wish, it will come true,
Just close your eyes – the rest is up to you.
Once upon a time there lived a beautiful Burmese cat called Taj.
His coat was the colour of dark chocolate, and felt as soft as silk.
Taj lived in a house surrounded by a magical forest.
Continue reading "TALLULA AND THE CAT THAT LOST HIS MEOW by..." »
Sunday, November 10. 2013
Once upon a time there was a child named ‘Little Red’ She lived in a small country town with her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Hood. Little Red’s father worked for the forestry department. Continue reading "CHOCOLATE MUFFINS by Gaye Hemsley" »
Saturday, November 9. 2013
Once upon a time there was a drone, a small male bee with big eyes. At birth he was given a sacred duty, selected to become the inseminator of his hive and fertilize the eggs of his Queen. This was his only purpose. He did not have to work or gather his own food and the adoration he received gave him a feeling of superiority, though he never knew the joy of a flower giving unto him the nectar of its being. Continue reading "THE OLD DRONE AND THE BUTTERFLY by Mark Shanks" »
Friday, November 8. 2013
Once upon a time there was a boy who grew. He grew strong, clever and tall, but he also grew lonely.
He asked his mother to find him someone to play with. She gathered him close and told him that he alone could make a friend.
The boy pushed his mother away.
Continue reading "THE BOY WHO MADE A FRIEND by Ceridwyn Roberts" »
Thursday, November 7. 2013
Once upon a time there was a giant called Jack Nohe. He was the boss of three small islands, one big bit of ocean and all the people who lived there. Every three years, the people of these little islands (called Aotearoa) mixed a new national trifle. Some of the people of the little islands had got sick of this trifle, especially when they didn’t get a very big piece, or they didn’t get one of the special sixpences that were hidden in it. Continue reading "TUMMY TROUBLE by Helen McNeil" »
Wednesday, November 6. 2013
Once upon a time, under a dark and threatening sky, the big kanukas which grew along the hillside began to move. At first, Louise thought it was only the wind rippling across the feathery tree tops. This couldn’t really be happening. Then Martin yelled
“ Look at that ! “
Continue reading "WHEN TREES MOVED by Lynne Hill" »
Tuesday, November 5. 2013
(A New Zealand adaptation of the Brothers Grimm tale -
The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids)
Once upon a time, in the lush New Zealand bush, there grew a tall Rata tree. In amongst its glossy dark green leaves was a snug little nest, and inside that nest were a Mother Bellbird and her seven little chicks.
Continue reading "THE RAT AND THE SEVEN LITTLE BELLBIRDS by Chris..." »
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