Goose With Three Wings

Jenny saw Mark and Scott looking at her and whispering as they came down the school hallway.  “They’re probably whispering about me.” she thought. “Don’t they know how much it hurts for them to stare?  I can’t help it if I was born with one leg shorter than the other.”

Jenny tried hard not to limp as the boys came closer.

“Hi, Jenny!” Chirped mark, Where are you headed?”

“To the library,” she answered,  “I haven’t found anything interesting for my oral science report yet.  Do you have yours ready?”

“Yeah,” said Mark.  “I just have to practice my speech a little more.”

From the corner of her eye Jenny saw Scott studying her feet and legs.  She wanted to run and hide, but she knew that would only make matters worse.

“Well, see ya’ later, Mark smiled.

“OK,” answered Jenny. 

Jenny slumped in the library chair as she flipped though one reference book after the other.  Everything looked boring.  Besides, she just couldn’t concentrate.  All she could think about was how Scott stared at her.  Mark was always nice, but Scott treated her as if she were a freak or something.

Finally, she gave up, and went home, and spent the afternoon in her bedroom fretting about the science report.

“I have to make up my mind pretty soon,” she sighed. “The report is due next week.”

Clanging pots and pans in the kitchen broke the silence in her bedroom.

“I know what I’ll do.  I’ll ask Mom. Maybe she has an idea.”

“Ummm, that looks good,” said Jenny as she came through the kitchen door.

I was just about to call you,” said Mom.  “I thought you’d like a hot drink after a long day at school.”

“Thanks,” said Jenny as she sipped a little of the hot liquid and warmed her hands on the steaming cup.

“Mom help me think of a good subject for my science report.  I’ve looked everywhere, but I can’t find anything that interests me.  Anyway, I wish I didn’t have to do the silly   thing.”

Jenny, that doesn’t sound like you.  You’re a good student. What’s the matter?”

“It’s an oral report, Mom, and I don’t like everyone staring t me.  You know I’m different from the other kids.”  Tears welled up in Jenny’s eyes.  Why did God do this to me?”  she sobbed.  “Why did he have to pick on me?”

Mom stepped over to where jenny was sitting.  She hugged her daughter and said, “Oh, Jenny, God isn’t picking on you.  He’d never do that.  He loves you and has a reason for everything he allows to happen.  We may not always understand right now, but someday we will.  You just wait and see.  Besides, everyone has something about himself he’d like to change.  No one is perfect.”

Mom was interrupted by the telephone.

Hello,” Said Mom. “h, yes, we’d love to.  We’ll be right over.”

Mom hung up the phone, turned to Jenny, and asked,  “Want to go with me to Mr. William’s farm?  He has some strawberries to give us.”

“Sure,” said Jenny, wiping away her tears.

Mom couldn’t help noticing how quiet Jenny was as they drove along.  She wanted to say something to make Jenny feel better about herself, but didn’t know what to say.  She felt better when Jenny said, “Mom, I enjoy visiting Mr. William’s farm.  He’s so easy to talk to, and he doesn’t even notice that I’m different.”

Mom smiled an nodded.  Mr. Williams did have a way of making everything seem better.

Mr. William was in the back yard feeding his chickens when Jenny and Mom arrived.

“May I feed them?” asked Jenny.

Sure.  They’d rather have you feed them anyway.  You’re much prettier than I am—and nicer too!” he chuckled.

Jenny smiled and took the pail.

I’ll pick strawberries while you two feed the chickens,” suggested Mom as she walked toward the strawberry patch.

“Well, how’s school?” asked Mr. William.

“OK, I guess,” answered Jenny.  She was quiet for a moment.  “I have to give an oral science report next week, but I don’t know what to report on.” She hesitated, and her voice quivered a little as she said, “I don’t think I can do it, Mr. William.”

“Why not asked Mr. William.  “That should be no problem for you.  You’re smart as a whip.”

“Oh, it’s not the report,” explained Jenny.  “It’s just—well—you know.”

“It’s just what?”

“I’m different from the other kids.  I know they don’t mean to, but they stare at me.  I don’t know which hurts more, when they try to hide it, or when they don’t.”

Mr. William stood for a moment, thinking.  Then he said, “Come over here, Jenny.  I have something to show you.”

Jenny followed Mr. William to a wire pen filled with geese and ducks.

“See that goose over there?”

“Yes,” answered Jenny.

“Watch what happens when I spray water on his back.”

Mr. William picked up the garden hose and turned on the well-house spigot.  When water hit the goose’s back, he spread his wings and strutted around the pen.

“Mr. Williams!” gasped Jenny.  “That goose has three wings!  Two on the right side and one on the left!”

“Sure does,” agreed Mr. William.  “He gets a lot of attention around here.  People leave here smiling and talking about my amazing goose.  He’s different, but he’s mighty special to me, and special to a lot of other folks too—just like you are.”

“May I take some pictures of him?” asked Jenny excitedly.  “I want to make my science report on him and show pictures.”

“Take all the pictures you want,” answered Mr. William, smiling.

The next week Jenny bubbled with excitement as she gave her report on geese and closed by showing pictures of the goose with three wings.

After class Mark hurried to catch up with Jenny.

“Jenny!” he called, Wait up!”

Jenny stopped in the hallway and waited for Mark.

“I really enjoyed your report,” he said.  “I never heard of a goose with three wings before.”

“Thanks,” Jenny smiled.  “He’s a very special goose.”

“Could I ask you something?” asked Mark.


“Well—it’s just that you seem so much happier the last few days. I was just wondering why.”

Jenny smiled.  He was right.  She was happier.

“It’s because Mr. William and his goose with three wings. They helped me realize that geese—and people—are all different, each in his own way.  The goose with three wings may be different, but he struts and honks just like the other geese.  His differences don’t seem to matter to him or the other geese.  He’s different on the outside, but on the inside, he’s just as goosey as any other goose in the barnyard.

“But sometimes it’s really hard to be different from the rest of the kids at school.”

“I know,” agreed Mark.  “I wish everyone could be a little more like the geese in the barnyard and not pay so much attention to differences.”

“Oh, it’s OK, now,” answered Jenny.  I know God has a reason for everything he allows to happen.  he loved us so much, he sent Jesus to die to save us, even if we are different.  I can’t understand such love, but someday I will.  In the meantime maybe I can help other people understand, even though they whisper and stare.  A person who’s different on the outside feels like everyone else on the inside, but you seem to understand that already.”

“I so understand,” answered Mark.  “My mom’s paralyzed.  It hurts me when people stare at her because she’s in a wheelchair.

They don’t understand that she loves us and takes care of us as well as any mom who can walk.  You and she are the nicest people I know.”

“Thanks,” said Jenny, blushing.  You’re a pretty nice person yourself.  Now let’s get going before we’re late for math class.”

“OK,” agreed Mark as they hurried down the hall together.

See proverbs 3:5;  Isaiah 55:9; John 9:1-3

Sandra Brooks


 Maria Goose

When dawn breaks in Echo Park in down town Los Angeles, the geese that live here begin their daily routine.  Some go for a swim, some peck for food, and one just stands there by the side of the road, patiently waiting for her mate to return on his scooter.  She is a goose named Maria, he is a retired salesman named Dominic.  They have become the talk of Echo Park. 

  “They walk around the park together like they are in love, its wonderful.”

  “People look at us as –like--What is this!!  Pretty much a fact.”

 “What? Have people never seen a man walking with a goose before?”

 “Yea, pretty much that”

It all started about 10 months ago when Maria simply started following Dominic .  He wasn’t feeding her, he wasn’t coaxing her.  He was just one of thousand of people that walk around the lake every day.  But there was something about his waddle that did it for Maria and she has been smitten ever since.  

 “The other geese are not allowed to be near me on account of Maria, Oh, she gets mad.”

Its not just other geese.

“I’ve seen her scare pit bulls.

“Maria be nice, don’t hurt the dogs, 

come on”

Maria doesn’t want any species stealing her man.  If he had her orders, she would never let him out of her sight.

“She’d go home with me.”

“She’d fly all the way home with me, she absolutely would.  There’s no doubt in my mind.”

  He knows because she tries, almost every day she tries.  He’ll take off on his scooter and Maria will be right there--Right by his side.  Unfortunately, Although Dom is a bachelor, he says he’s not ready for a live-in goose friend.  So, he returns to the park and either gets someone to keep Maria behind a gate long enough for him to sneak away, or   often times he’ll just simply sit at a bench and wait for Maria to fall asleep.  It was always claimed that love has no bounds, but now we have the proof of it.

“Isn’t she an angel?  You’re beautiful”










O, you little goose!" said Harry as he stood with his hands in his pockets, watching his sister Jean cracking some nuts on the end of the wood box.  “Why don’t you take hold of the hammer head and be done with it, you might as well.” “There,” he exclaimed, as the hammer slipped and came down on Jean's thumb, "I knew you’d do that, Girls have no business with hammers, anyway.”  “They have too," Jean replied, spitefully “You needn't think, 'cause you’re a boy, that you know everything.  ”Take your old hammer," she added as she gave her thumb another unmerciful whack.  If you know so much about it, crack 'em yourself.  I guess I’m not any more of a goose than you are and she turned toward the door.  Just on the threshold she met her mother. Why Jean!" said Mrs. Walling, as she notice the little girls flashing eyes and scarlet cheeks “I don’t care!" Jean replied, “Harry’s just as mean as he can be, and he called me a goose."  "Well," said her mother, with a quiet smile, as she sat down in an arm-chair, "I should not feel very bad, if I were you, even though he did call me a goose."

"O mamma!" said Jean, with wide-opened eyes.

"No," replied her mother, "I don't think I would. Geese are not so stupid, after all, as usually think they are. They really know a great deal. I once read of a flock of geese that saved a whole city."

"Tell us about it, please," said Harry, as he came over and stood by his mother's side.

"Many centuries ago," said Mrs. Walling, "almost three hundred and ninety years before Christ, the Romans had a terrible war with the Gauls.  The Gauls, you know, were a people who lived beyond the Alps.

"This battle I am telling you about-took place on the banks of the River Allia, nearly seven miles from Rome. The Gauls were really better soldiers than the Romans; but the Romans did not think so, and they went out very bravely to meet these `barbarians, 'as they called them,

"Then there followed such a dreadful battle!

Everywhere lay the dead and the dying.  The Romans were badly beaten, and many of them were drowned in trying to swim the Tiber to get home. A few of them got there, however. They found the city deserted. There were not men enough even to defend the walls. What should they do!  The enemy was right behind them. All they had time to do was to hurry to the Capitol building, and try to save that.  Just then the Gauls came up, and rushed into the city to plunder it.

"The Romans that had fled from Rome heard how these citizens were shut up in the Capitol, They wanted to help them; so they formed an army to go to their aid. They thought they could not succeed unless Camillus, their old leader, stood at the head of the army. But he had been sent away from Rome years before, and could not return without the consent of the rulers. The rulers were shut up in the Capitol. What was to be done?

Who would dare face the Gauls, and get the Senators to let this man come back?

"At last a bold youth named Pontius Cominius said he would go. So he swam the Tiber by night, and climbed up to the Capitol over a precipice that no one thought a man could get over. After he had finished his business with the Senate, he went back the same way he came.

"In the morning some Gauls were passing that way. Their keen eyes very soon saw that some foot had disturbed the rocks and clinging vines.

Oho!' said they, ''some Roman has been over this crag. We'll see if a Gaul can't do as much as a Roman can.' So when night came again, a line of soldiers began, one by one, to climb up the precipice as the Roman had done, that they might kill the brave men imprisoned in the Capitol.

"At the top of the wall hung some cages of geese, sacred to the goddess Juno. Everybody seemed to have forgotten the geese in the excitement.”

 There they hung, just as in times of peace.  As the first man's head appeared above the wall, the geese were ready for duty, and set up a tackling that echoed and

re-echoed over the sleeping city.

"The Gauls did not expect such a greeting.  The noise of the geese woke up a brave man named Marcus Manlius. He rushed to the wall just as two Gauls reached the top. He thrust his shield again a stone, and his good sword against the other, pushing them both down. They fell against those who were toiling up behind them; and so one kept falling against another, until they all lay in a heap at the bottom.

"After a time the Roman army reached the city, and succeeded in taking it away from their enemies. You may believe that they thought more of the geese than ever, after that."  "Well," said Jean, as her mother finished talking, "I shall not get angry now when Harry calls me a goose. I'll just ask him if he remembers what geese have done, and how much they really know."


W. E. L.