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gracie's world 2004



Gracie's World June 2004


June 1, 2004

Dear Muffin,

I guess you ought to know I have a new toad.

His name is Xerxes.

Yours Truly,

Gracie De La Rue


June 2, 2004

Dear Muffin,

Xerxes, he is a Southern Toad. He is from Tennessee. He knew Elvis.


Gracie De La Rue


June 3, 2004


It came about in this manner:

One time when I was over at Mrs. Verjuices housem Xerxes, he was setting on the edge of the Dabble Pond.

He was just setting there. His half-closed umbrella was laying next to him. Right there on the marble walkway. His silk top hat was a little bit weather worn.

I think he is a orphan,




June 4, 2004


Anyways, I took that toad home.

I have named that toad Xerxes. Xerxes means Fat Guy But Good Swimmer.

Bufo Woodhouse, heis my other toad. Bufo Woodhouse and Xerxes, they share a summer cottage. That summer cottage is situated behind Chez Beak. The veranda overlooks the brick courtyard. Chez Beak sometimes features live chamber music out there.

Sometimes in the evenings Bufo and Xerxes, they set on the veranda. They wear their silk smoking jackets. They set there and enjoy the cigars which Pia gets for them. They discuss classical music and observe the clientele of Chez Beak which are dining and drinking in the courtyard below.

Sometimes Bufo and Xerxes, they get dressed up in their white ties and tails and top hats and they go down to the courtyard and they join Mimulus Beak the proprietor of Chez Beak. The three of them enjoy a nice dessert of Spittlebug flambe.

It is a pretty good life for a toad.

Yours truly,

Gracie De La Rue


June 5, 2004


I forgot to say that Xerxes the toad, he is a poet.




June 6, 2004

My Dear Gracie,

I very much hope that this letter finds you in fine fettle!

I have read in my geography books that this is the Shedding Season in North America during which all cats drop their fur, eat some of this fur, and then vomit the fur up afterwards. Sometimes dogs eat this vomit, sometimes not. A curious custom.

Does it have its roots in some sort of annual spiritual quest similar to our dust wallows? I am unable to find reference to this, but I surmise that this is the case. Perhaps you can illuminate this mystery for ...

...Yours Truly,



June 7, 2004

Dearest Gracie,

I am taking a respite from my college entrance studies to wrap and mail to you this garment which I have woven from yarn, which I have spun from Yak fuzz!

I hope that you can make good use of this garment, as now you have no fur.

Yours Always,



June 8, 2004

Dearest Gracie,

We are growing enormous pumpkins this year! They are the size of beef cattle!

These pumpkins will be dried. Their seeds will be removed, and the pumpkins will be made into ceremonial huts.

These huts are for the shamans in the villages to the south. Theirs were consumed last year by Belgian Stinking Weevils.

In return we will receive three wooden desks for our school!

Yours Always,

Muffin Antipaloupikouidae

P.S. The Shamans, they are the same gentlemen to which you refer as our "Wise Guys."


June 10, 2004

Dear Muffin,

Here is a poem which Xerxes wrote.


Wretched wallow in which I sink to the knickers
Fester alone! I flee from thee!

Oh, old grey tractor, blatting down the road! I hop
Midst thy mammoth tires

And am not crushed
To mush!

This much
Is true.

The rest,




June 11, 2004


Xerxes, I think he is a pretty good poet. What do you think.



June 12, 2004

Dearest Gracie,

I have received your letter with the photograph of your family enclosed! A charming family! I enjoy how everyone is tilted at an angle. Chessie in her red jumper with the little rounded collar is most winsome. Snooples, I see has many vomit scout badges upon her vomit scout sash.

I had no idea that the walls were grey-mottled in your house; I pictured something more pastel, with many elaborately framed portraits of ancestors. But perhaps the portraits are off in another room.

Your Friend Always,


P.S. Please pass along to Chickenloaf that I admire her trousers. The Shamans of our villages to the north and west use this same yellow corduroy fabric with bumblebees printed all over it as their head wraps.


June 16, 2004

Dear Muffin,

We did not get that family pitcher took in our house. We got that pitcher took at Walmart. That mottled wall costs extra.




June 17, 2004

Dear Muffin,

In that pitcher did you notice Bens sandals. Ben weaved those sandals out of crabgrass.

Yours Truly,



June 18

Weeding zucchini bed at Vladimir Polesaw's place.

One of Vladimir Polesaw's little goats, he keeps following me. Every time I move over to a new zucchini plant that goat clicks up behind and to the left, on his little hoofs.

That goat, he is the size of a Chihuahua.

I think he is just a little kid.


June 19

That goat, he wears a little red bell now. However he is still following me around. He always appears to be amused.


June 20

That goat, he has white legs yet black knees.


June 21, 2004


What do you know about a goat. A goat does not talk much.




June 22

Hanging suet cakes for the ivory billed woodpeckers at Vladimir Polesaw's place. Some blue-footed boobies are wattling around nearby.

Pia, she is mowing the lawn with Vladimir Polesaw' ancient Briggs & Stratton. Snooples and Chessie and Chickenloaf are feeding pretzel rods to the piglets.

Vladimir Polesaw, he is grilling Delmonicoe Steaks for all of us.

That little goat, he is wearing a red beret this evening. That goat, everywhere I go he trots up behind. Then that goat, he just stands there and looks amused.


June 23

Today I will ask Vladimir Polesaw that is it with that goat.

However first I put fresh hairnets on Mrs. Verjuice's Tea Roses.


June 24

This evening when I was pulling weeds from between the little paving stones of the miniature San Juan Capistrano Mission in Menudo Toblerone's yard a swallow landed on top of my head. That swallow just stood there about half an hour.

I did not know what to do.


June 25, 2004

Dear Muffin,

That goat. Now he nudges. Which causes me to drop the grass trimming scissors.

Please advise.

Yours Truly,

Gracie De La Rue


June 26, 2004

Dearest Gracie!

How extremely fortunate you are to possess a goat! Goat meat is rare and highly prized in our village. The skins are used to make sandwich bags.

Of course I do not eat goat meat as you know. Being a Hindu and a ruminant.

Yours Always,



June 27

Scissoring grass around a old Westinghouse television set in Eben Flows front yard. The pitcher tube is gone from this television set. In its place is a nest of Buffleheads.

Good gracious that goat kid, he has followed me all the way over here from Vladimir Polesaw's place.

That goat kid, he is standing at the edge of the yard where the oat field begins. That goat he is grinning. He is watching me expectantly. He has weirdo sideways pupils.

Perhaps he is on some sort of medication.


June 28

Collecting June Bugs at the estate of Caprolalia Skattworthington the wealthy baroness. Am supposed to equip each June Bug with a little tiara of solar-powered light bulbs. So that the June Bugs will fly about in a festive manner at the outdoor dinner party this evening.

Good grief there is that goat kid. He must have walked all 11 miles from Vladimir Polesaw's house.

Mrs. Skattworthington's chauffeur will have to drive him home once again.


June 29, 2004

Dearest Gracie,

Thank you very much for the lovely drawing of all the television sets! Chickenloaf is very talented!

I always envisioned television sets as being an indoor appliance. How interesting to learn that certain yards are festooned with them.

Also, many of them appear to be televising programs about nesting water birds. But perhaps that is just an illusion created by Chickenloaf's pointillist technique.

Most mysterious of all is the title of Chickenloaf's work: Garden of Syndicated Reruns.

Yours Always,



June 30

This evening when I was trellising the boysenberries at Vladimir Polesaw's place up trotted that goat.

That goat, he had a sheet of paper hanging from his mouth. He dropped that sheet of paper on the grass and waited expectantly for me to pick it up.

That paper, it said



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