Miss Pussy Willow put on her furs one day in March and stepped out into the sunshine; but, while the sun was warm, March’s breath was cold, so she hugged her furs closer about her and sat on a swaying bough.
It was early and Miss Pussy knew it, but what cared she, dressed in her furs; she knew that her silver-gray dress was very much admired, and while she was modest she was not above caring for admiration.
Pussy Willow had no trouble until all the spring and summer flowers arrived in their gayly colored gowns and then, though she did not in the least envy them, she did not like to hear the scornful remarks about her furs, and sometimes she wished that under her fur coat she had a pretty colored gown.
“It is really too bad,” said one Red Flower. “Poor Pussy Willow! I do feel so sorry for her; she wears that fur coat all the year round.”
“You know why, my dear, do you not?” asked a tall Blue Flower growing near.
“I suppose she has no other,” said the Red Flower.
“I think it is because she has on an old dress,” answered tall Blue Flower; “she never takes off that fur coat, you notice, and, of course, these hot days she would if she had a new dress. Don’t you think I am right?”
“I should not wonder if you were,” was the reply, “but let us ask Mr. Poppy what he thinks.”
“Oh, what is the use of asking him. He is asleep half the time. I do believe he never sees our pretty frocks at all,” replied Blue Flower. “Let us ask Miss Thistle; she sees everything and she may have asked Miss Willow before this why she never takes off her coat; you know Thistle cares nothing for the feelings of others.”
Miss Thistle said she did not know, but that she would ask Miss Willow right away, “for why in the world she wears that fur coat all summer I cannot think. She really is the only one around here who does not give attention to her clothes. I think style means more than color,” said Miss Thistle, with a toss of her head.
“I can tell you what you wish to know,” said Lady Bug, alighting on a bush near the gossips.
“Oh, do, dear Lady Bug!” said Blue Flower. “You travel and know the styles. Now don’t you think blue is ever so much better style for summer than any other color?”
“Yes, I do travel,” replied Miss Lady Bug, without replying to Blue Flower’s question, “and I see the styles, as you said, and that is the reason I can tell you the truth about Pussy Willow. She is the only one among you who really is in style.”
“In style with that fur on!” said Thistle, all prickly with anger. “Why, where have you been, Lady Bug? Up to the North Pole?”
“No,” calmly replied Miss Lady Bug. “I have been everywhere that fashionable folks go, and everybody is wearing furs, no matter how hot the weather; and so I tell you again that the only one who is in style is Miss Pussy Willow with her silvery fur.”
Miss Pussy Willow did not let the flowers around her know that she heard what Lady Bug had said, but she felt very happy and no longer did she wish that under her fur she had a dainty colored gown.
She behaved in a modest manner and put on no airs, for did she not know that she was dressed in the latest fashion?