Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Cap That Mother Made

To continue the theme of visual influences from childhood:

While visiting my mother yesterday, I found a wonderful book of children's folk tales that had been hers when she was growing up, and which I read constantly when I was growing up. I LOVED the beautiful pictures that illustrated each of the tales.

The picture above is from my favorite story in the book, "The Cap That Mother Made." It's about Anders, a boy whose loving mother knits him a beautiful multi-colored wool cap. Throughout his travels, everyone he meets covets the hat, but he is smart enough to hang on to it, no matter how tempting the offer to trade for it. This picture shows the king offering Anders his crown in exchange for the cap, but our hero values his mother's handiwork even more than all the jewels in the crown.

When he returns home, his brothers and sisters laugh at him for turning down the king's crown. But Anders declares, "All the money the king's crown could bring, would not buy me a finer cap than the beautiful cap of red and green and blue that Mother made me."

The story ends with one very proud Mom: "Anders ran straight into his mother's arms and she gave him a big hug and many, many kisses."

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