Children’s Lit – The Orange Flowerpot – Mary Bradford

“Now there were five pointy hats in the grass.”

The Orange Flowerpot

Ruth loved it when her mum brought her out to the garden. She could crawl through the daisies and say hello to the little people who lived beneath the orange flowerpot. Today was no different.

While her mum sat reading, the little baby took off exploring. The flowerpot lay by the fence, the cat must have knocked it over again. Melvyn was next-door’s cat. He was mean to the pixies. That’s what the little people called themselves. The pixies told Ruth how only babies and animals could see them: it was special magic.

Ruth toddled off to check if her friends were around. She loved their tiny faces and bright red hats. The first time she met them, she clapped her hands so much, her mum was excited telling Daddy how their daughter clapped hands for the first time. She got lots of hugs from Daddy when he finished working. These days he was home all the time because lots of people were getting sick. Even Nana and Grandad were not allowed to visit because of the sickness. Ruth missed their cuddles.

Now, on her garden journey, she giggled as the grass tickled her chubby thighs.

“Hello, hello?” Ruth called out. Stopping to sit, the baby looked around. There was no sign of bold Melvyn. Or her friends.

“Are you babbling, telling the flowers a story?” her mum called after her. Ruth turned and smiled in answer.

Just another few crawls and she was at the flowerpot. She tried to lift it and turn it upside down but it was too heavy. Her small fingers couldn’t grasp the pot and she grunted with effort to push it back up again. Then she heard a whisper.

“Ruth, over here.” Sitting upright again, she spotted a pointy red hat between the blades of grass.

“What are you doing?” she asked.

“We are digging a new tunnel. We need a new doorway.” Now there were five pointy hats in the grass.

“Are you leaving my garden?” Her voice sounded sad and her bottom lip wobbled.

“Oh no, Ruth, the bold cat found our door. Now we are making a new way into our secret house.”

“Can I help?”

“Can you push the flowerpot over here?” The pointy red hats bobbed up and down in the grass. They were tiny so it was hard to see their faces unless you got up really close.

Ruth wrapped her arms around the pot and tried to lift it, but it wouldn’t budge. She groaned. Her hands were too small.

“What are you up to, Ruth?” her mum had come over, hearing the baby gurgling.

“Let me move that pot out of your way. Are you looking for the pussy cat? Clever girl.” Mum picked up the pot and placed it down right over the pixies new entrance. What luck!

“Mama,” Ruth held out her arms. The two cuddled together.

Ruth heard her friends cheering from beneath the flowerpot.

Another exciting day in the garden.


Mary T Bradford is an Irish author of two published novels available on Amazon. She is the mother of four adult children and Nana to two little boys, Liam and Eoghan. She misses her grandchildren a lot during lockdown as they live abroad and she cannot go to visit them. Being a Nana is the best ever, Mary believes. 

Connect with Mary on Twitter, Facebook or via her author’s website.

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