By Margo Fallis
In the jungle there lived a monkey named Lurch. He had a tail that was ten feet long. He could swing from any tree to another by swinging back and forth with his tail. He could use his tail to knock bananas down from the tree and not even leave the ground. Hed just twirl it and send it flying up to the top of the tree where the bunch of bananas was and grab as many as he liked.
If he was in a really playful mood Lurch would find a tall tree with long branches on it, and swing out over the river. Back and forth hed go until he was over the deepest part in the middle, and hed let go and fall into the water with a huge splash. He had to be very careful because there were a lot of hippos in the river and they didnt like to be splashed on.
Early one morning Lurch went searching for a mango. Besides bananas, he also loved to eat mangos, especially when they were ripe and juicy. He swung from tree to tree looking for some. He saw some coconuts, high up in a palm tree. He could reach one with his ten-foot tail, but he didnt feel like eating coconuts. He wanted a mango.
He saw a tree filled with papaya, one heavy with figs, and another with guava growing all over it, but he didnt feel like eating any of those fruits. He craved a mango. So he kept swinging from tree to tree looking for one.
Lurch ended up down by the river. He swung onto a high branch. He looked down into the river. The water looked cool and refreshing. He was hungry, but he couldnt resist a little swim. He wrapped his tail around the tree branch and started swinging back and forth. He got higher and higher and went faster and faster. When he was as high as he could go, he let go of the branch and flew threw the air. He fell through the air, giggling, "Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!" He landed with an enormous splash right in the middle of the river. Water went flying everywhere. Anything within twenty feet got splashed on.
Hugo, a very large hippo, happened to be sunbathing on the muddy banks of the river. When Lurch splashed, the water had drenched Hugo. Drops of river water went flying up his nose; some got in his eyes and some went down into his ears. Hugo was mad! He stood up and looked into the river. He saw Lurch splashing and laughing and playing around in the deep water. He slipped into the river. He was about halfway when Lurch turned and saw him. "Uh oh," he said. "Ooops!" Lurch started swimming as fast as he could.
He was just about to the other side when Hugo grabbed his ten-foot tail. He started swinging Lurch around in circles, high in the air. Lurch was feeling dizzy. Hugo was spinning him very fast. Suddenly he let go of Lurchs long tail. Lurch went flying through the air and landed right in a tree. "Stay out of the river!" Hugo yelled.
Lurch used his tail to catch himself. He sat on a branch, feeling very scared. Just then he looked at the thick, wide leaves. "A mango tree!" he giggled. He forgot all about Hugo and the river and grabbed a handful of mangoes. He ate a dozen of them. "Delicious!" he said, wiping his mouth. He used his tail to pick all the mangoes from the hard to reach branches.
He decided that hed better not go swimming for a while, not until Hugo stopped being mad, but he was sure happy that Hugo had tossed him into the mango tree. Yummy!
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