Gertrude Falls in Love

30 Apr

Mavis was humming a little ditty and skipping along between the menagerie cages when she noticed the gate to Gertie’s cage slightly ajar.  The sky was an eery gray and clouds were spiraling into strange formations.  She and, Vermillion, the ‘knife thrower’, had been discussing earlier that the sky was a bizare tinge of purple and that it might be an ‘umbrella day’ (as Mavis liked to call it).  Anyway, Ms. Sinclair was curious as to why the door was hanging open and decided to peer inside.  To her dismay, once her eyes focused on the contents of the cage, they rested on the giant hippo occupying it.  She was huddled in the left-hand corner wearing lavender panties.  Her massive hippo head was cocked to one side, but slightly tilted downward and her eyes were fixed in a glassy eyed stare directly into the half-full, but suprisingly clear water in her tin drinking bowl.  She seemed to be lost in some kind of transcendent dream world.  Mavis whispered, “Gertrude, are you okay?”  There was no response.  The hippo was frozen like a bronze monument.  Mave began to worry.  Why was her hippo side-kick paralized?  What had happened?  Was she frightened?  Mavis decided to get the doctor.  The circus’ Dr. Phenwilson was summoned to the premises immediately to investigate.  “It seems as if your hippo is smitten with her own reflection, Ms. Sinclair.”  Mavis was stunned.  They slowly slid the bowl from under the hippo’s mammoth gaze.  Without hesitation, Gertrude began to blink incessantly, and sure enough, she fainted.  Dr. Phenwilson was right!  Gertie had fallen in love with her own image.  Just like the story of Narcissus.  Poor hippo.  To remedy this problem, Mavis decided to add a few lily pads to Gertrude’s water bowl each time to disguise the reflective properties.  -The End


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