Sunday, December 14, 2008

Maud Marta Spares the Mouse

So, I mentioned yesterday that I had to take one of the New York State teacher certification exams yesterday.  It was the LAST; Literature Arts and Science Test.  It was mostly common sense things, reading charts, interpreting pictures, and a lot of reading comprehension.  

One of the passages we had to read was by Gwendolyn Brooks, called "Maud Marta Spares the Mouse".  If you've seen this before, sorry :)  If not, then I think its worth the short read, something relaxing to do on your Sunday afternoon.

   Maud Martha Spares the Mouse

by Gwendolyn Brooks

There. She had it at last. The weeks it had devoted to eluding her, the tricks, the clever hide-and-go-seeks, the routes it had in all sobriety devised, together with the delicious moments it had, undoubtedly, laughed up its sleeve.

It shook its little self, as best it could, in the trap. Its bright black eyes contained no appeal–the little creature seemed to understand that there was no hope of mercy from the eternal enemy, no hope of reprieve or postponement–but a fine small dignity. It waited. It looked at Maud Martha.

She wondered what else it was thinking. Perhaps that there was not enough food in its larder. Perhaps that little Betty, a puny child from the start, would not, now, be getting fed. Perhaps that, now, the family's seasonal housecleaning, for lack of expert direction, would be left undone. It might be regretting that young Bobby's education was now at an end. It might be nursing personal regrets. No more the mysterious shadows of the kitchenette, the uncharted twists, the unguessed halls. Nor more the sweet delights of the chase, the charms of being unsuccessfully hounded, thrown at.

Maud Martha could not bear the little look.

"Go home to your children," she urged. "To you wife or husband." She opened the trap. The mouse vanished.

Suddenly, she was conscious of a new cleanness in her. A wide air walked in her. A life had blundered its way into her power and it had been hers to preserve or destroy. she had not destroyed. In the center of that simple restraint was–creation. She had created a piece of life. It was wonderful.

"Why," she thought, as her height doubled, "why, I'm good! I am good."

She ironed her aprons. Her back was straight. Her eyes were mild, and soft with loving kindness.

That's it!  Short and sweet.  I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!  

I got this from this link.


  1. aww thanks for the sweet comment on my site, and that was such a cute story!

  2. adorable! hope you had a great weekend, Gina.