The Adventures of Peterkin by Gilly Bear.
Chapter 1 – Pumpkin Troubles
This story has been rewritten for Level 2 English learners to enjoy.
Do you know Peterkin? He was the little boy who lived inside a pumpkin.
Why did he live there? I don’t remember why. But I imagine that it is terrible to live in a pumpkin.
Can you imagine? Pumpkins are round, of course, so it’s like living in a big fish bowl. But that’s not the worst part. The worst part was that Peterkin’s pumpkin home was on a hill. Why was he so foolish?
Let me tell you more about this little boy.
One day, when he was sitting on his bed, the wind began to blow.
The wind had a very playful personality. It loved to blow over the pumpkin patch and play with Peterkin.
The wind had a good time. But Peterkin didn’t have a good time. You see, the wind didn’t realize that Peterkin was angry about it.
Outside, the wind blew the pumpkins around. Inside, poor Peterkin was spinning around and around inside his pumpkin house.
“Ouch! Ouch!” he said. “My poor head has bumps and bruises. Ugh! Ugh! Why, oh, why did I decide to live in a pumpkin!? I should have stayed in a regular house, like other people do. Oh, ouch!”
“Whee!” said the wind. “I love to play. I love to make the leaves whirl. I love to make the dirt fly up. I love to make the trees bow down. I love to make the windows shake. Whee!”
And then, something very terrible happened. The wind gave a big blow and Peterkin’s pumpkin house snapped off the vine.
The pumpkin house began to roll. Away and away, the pumpkin house rolled down the bumpy hill. It rolled down the field, rolled across the ditch, through the river, and down another hill. Away and away, down and down, Peterkin and his pumpkin house rolled and rolled.
Inside, Peterkin was spinning like crazy. Head up, feet down. Head down, feet up. Down, down, down! Then up another hill. Up, up, to the top. Poor Peterkin was doing flips inside his home.
At the top of this hill was a steep cliff. And at the bottom of the cliff was the sea.
The pumpkin house rolled up to the edge of the cliff. For a short moment, the pumpkin house stopped. Then, it tipped over, and fell down, down, down into the sea.
It splashed into the water and sank. Then slowly, it came up to the surface of the water. It sank again, and then came up again, and it floated away peacefully in the sea.