Read on line
Listen on line
Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Andersen Hans Christian > Fairy tale "Ole, the Tower Keeper"

Ole, the Tower Keeper

"The witches' flight to the Blocksberg on Midsummer Eve is, of course, well known, but we also have a wild mob, in this land and in our time, which speeds to Amager on New Year's Eve. All the bad poets, poetesses, newspaper hack writers, musicians, and artistic lions who are not worth anything else ride through the air to Amager on New Year's Eve. They sit astride their pencils or quill pens - for steel pens are too stiff for riding. I watch them every New Year's Eve - I could name most of them, but it isn't worth while - they don't imagine that anybody knows of their trip through the air on the quill pens. There is a sort of a niece of mine who is a fisherwoman, and writes scandal and slander for three respectable papers; she says she has been out there as an invited guest, and they carried her, for since she cannot herself use a pen she couldn't ride on one. She has described the whole affair. Half of what she told me is probably a lie, but the other half is enough.

"When she was well under way they all broke into song; each of the guests had written his own song, and each sang his own composition, because, of course, he thought it was the best. They were all very much alike; and all sung to the same melody. Then, in little groups, up marched those who occupy themselves only as chatterboxes. They were now singing bells that sang alternately. Then came the small drummers, who drummed in family groups. Those who write anonymously were introduced - those, let me say here, whose grease is used for shoe polishing. There was the executioner, and his helper, and the helper was the worst, for otherwise no one would have paid any attention to him. There was the street sweeper with his cart, who turns over his dustbin and calls it "good, very good, remarkably good." During all this merriment, such as it was, there would shoot forth from holes scattered about now a gaunt stalk, now a leafless tree, a huge flower, or a large mushroom, and finally a roof that bore upon itself everything this honorable assembly had given to the world during the preceding year.

Also read
A Clever Thief
Category: Indian folktales
Read times: 56