Hickory dickory dock,
the mouse ran up the clock,
from which he stole several gears, springs, and vital workings.
The mouselings, no longer lulled by the ticking sound,
were restless and prone to spook,
except for Simon,
who wondered aloud whether the parts were clockwork
if they no longer helped the clock to work.

So when Jack and Jill went up the hill
to fetch a pail of water from the spring that was in the foothills,
Lillian the mouseling went too,
to look for four-leaf clovers and dandelions to wish on.
She didn’t have to worry about waiting for the clock to tick,
the constant steady rhythm of her world that was now gone.
She rode on Jill’s shoulder,
and found a dandelion to wish on
(and another to harvest seeds from, because up the hill was
an AWFULLY long way to come just to find dandelions),
and took home a four-leaf clover for her Gran,
who lived behind the china cabinet.

Thomas and Eric broke into Daddy’s workshop,
to try and steal the gears, springs, and vital workings,
to put them back.
Daddy found them before they got through the door with the first piece,
and what he asked them stopped them cold.
“Do you know how to repair a clock?”
They didn’t.

But even so, the mouselings were adjusting to life without ticking.
They were finally sleeping through the night again
without crawling into Daddy and Mama’s bed
because the nightmares couldn’t find them there.

And then Mother Goose heard about the situation,
and wouldn’t shut up about it,
and the mouse family gave up and moved out to the barn,
where at least the morning rooster provided some sort of schedule.

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