A Dime or a Tooth

Lula Gregory Flynn

A Dime or a Tooth


            A little red hen was in the yard very busy finding food for her large brood of baby chicks.  Her presence caused a thought to race through my father’s head as to how the little red hen could find some quick food and at the same time my sister, Beulah, and I could earn some easy money. 

                        My father called us to him and related his plan.  It sounded too simple not to work, so Beulah and I became his partners.  We were to let the little hen take a look at our teeth and in return for the “peep” we were to receive a dime.

            Beulah took her turn first.  When she opened her mouth, the little hen tilted her head slightly to one side and winked her eyes a time or two as if to clear her vision.  With on quick nod of the head, she went to work.  One trial was all she got because Beulah was too quick for a second try.  She raced away with the dime and a very disgusted girl.

            Now, it was my turn for a pay off. Oh, how I wished the ordeal was over.  The dime was still the uppermost thought in my mind.  I had not even thought that the little red hen was to use the same beak to examine my teeth that she used to catch many big juicy bugs and plump worms.  I opened my mouth and the hen went to work.  How fast she passed form one tooth to the other and how it hurt!  The pain grew worse and worse.  What could I do?  Would I even have a front tooth left?  My eyes were overflowing with burning salty tears.  I could not see to tell whether the hen was red or white, but where were my teeth?

            My father’s loud laughter did not ease the dreadful pain or heal my wounded pride.  Finally, I got away form the hen’s pounding and received my reward, A Dime.  Much to my surprise my teeth were all still there, not a single one was missing.  After this experience, I went away a wiser lassie and learned, if you want to keep out of trouble, just keep you mouth shut.


By: Lulu Gregory Flynn



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