15. December

The girl with the matches
written by Hans Christian Anderson
This is the saddest fairy-tale I have ever read, it touched my heart deeply and always moves me to tears

It was a cold winters night on the last day of the year.
There in the darkness, a poor little girl with bare feet was walking along the streets.
She did wear some slippers but they were so big ( as they were her mother’s) that she soon lost them on the way.

She was wearing an old apron, in which she carried her matches.
Nobody had bought any all day or had given her a penny.
Snowflakes covered her hair as she walked by many houses from which she could smell roasted geese and see many sparkling lights.
She sat down in a little side road and pulled her little feet close to her shaking body.
She was afraid to go home as she hadn’t sold any matches that day and her father would surely beat her for that.
The girl thought “maybe if I light a match it will keep me warm”, so it did.

The flame shed a strange light and she suddenly saw a big iron oven, decorated with beautiful ornaments. The fire was burning beautifully, and the warmth felt wonderful.
The little girl stretched out her feet, so she could warm them too but then the flame disappeared.

She lightened up another match and could see a living room, in which a table was covered in the whitest table cloth and porcelain dishes. In the middle of the table was a Christmas goose filled with plums and apples. The Goose jumped off the table and waddled towards her when suddenly the flame died and all she could see was the burnt match.

She lightened up another match and suddenly she was sitting under the grandest Christmas tree. A thousand lights decorated the green branches and she could see many beautiful, colourful pictures.
As she stretched her hands out to them the flame died again.

She looked up into the starry night and saw, one of them falling

“ Someone is dying”- the girl said.

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Her Grandmother, who had always lover her dearly when she was alive, told the little girl that whenever a star fell from the sky, someones soul was travelling up to heaven.

The girl, lightened another match and saw her grandmother who was shimmering in the light and looked at her gently and lovingly.
“Grandmother, please take me with you. I know you will vanish like the warm oven, the delicious goose and the grand Christmas tree”- the girl said whilst lighting another match quickly as she didn’t want to lose her grandmother again.
The matches shined so brightly that you could have thought it was day.
Then the grandmother took the girl into her arms and both rose up so high that she didn’t feel cold, hungry or fearful any more. They were now in heaven.

In the early morning hours there was a little girl, leaning against a wall in a side road,smiling. She was sitting there with her little burnt matches and had frozen to death.

“She should have kept warm” people said.
But nobody would ever know, what beautiful things she had seen on her last night and the happiness she felt when she was finally carried over into the new year.

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