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HOME > Children's Novel > The Tale of the The Muley Cow > XII THE COWBIRDS
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 Some of the Muley Cow's friends were very sorry for her, when Farmer Green put the around her neck to keep her from jumping the pasture fence. It was a heavy, clumsy thing to carry about all day. Sometimes, if she was not careful, the Muley Cow knocked her knees against it.  
Of course, there were others in the , like the little red cow and the big white one, that made disagreeable remarks. When they said unkind things to her the Muley Cow pretended that the poke didn't trouble her.
"Don't you know," she said to them one day, "that it's an honor to wear a poke? It shows that I'm the most valuable animal in the herd. Farmer Green doesn't intend to lose me, if he can help it."
"Nonsense!" the little red cow cried. "Farmer Green makes you wear the poke because he doesn't want you to teach the young cattle bad habits. If he hadn't stopped you from jumping you'd soon have had all the youngsters at it."
It was now the Muley Cow's turn to cry, "Nonsense!" But somehow she couldn't quite say the word. She had a queer, guilty feeling. And she walked away looking quite . She didn't want to talk with anybody.
After her there followed a small flock of cowbirds.
"We aren't , I hope," one plump cowbird remarked with a as he settled himself near the Muley Cow's forelegs, when she stopped to graze.
"You can always cou............
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