Purple Frog

© 2003 - 2024 Deborah Strod

Once upon a time there was a purple frog.  It was the only purple frog in the world.  It was very special.  It stayed only where there were purple flowers growing in its the pond, because it was afraid that if any one else knew there was a purple frog, instead of just green ones, everyone would want to see it.  The frog liked its quiet life, and didn’t want to be a curiosity to lots of other folks.

Then one day, it heard a salamander in trouble in a nearby stream.  The poor salamander was stuck in some muck at the edge of the stream.  The purple frog knew what to do, and hopped right over to help.  It tugged and pulled harder and harder until finally, the salamander was freed from the muck.  Friends and relatives of the salamander came to help, and word spread of the purple frog.
The frog knew that its quiet life would be over soon.  But the salamander had an idea. 
“Go see my friend, the chameleon, over there.”
“Where?  I don’t see anyone.”
“Look more closely, by the woods.  Tell her that I sent you, and tell her what your problem is.  Maybe she can help.”  And with that, the salamander was swept away by tending family.
The frog hopped over to the chameleon.  Slowly as the frog hopped closer, the outline of an animal grew clearer, but the color looked just like the brown of the trees and the green of the grass.  Suddenly the chameleon jumped forward onto some dried grass the color of straw.  The brown and green color suddenly stood out, and the frog started questioning with more certainty.
“Yes, Frog.”
“Salamander thought you might be able to help me.  I’m the only purple frog in the world and I don’t want everyone else in the world to want to see me just because I’m the only one.  I like my quiet life in the pond with the purple flowers where I blend in.  Can you teach me how you change your colors so I can hide my purple color?”
 The chameleon’s brown and green skin had already become streaked with straw-color stripes as it changed to blend in with the straw.
“Yes, I can.”  And the chameleon showed the frog how to mimic their surroundings.  The frog was able to turn straw colored right away, and hopped away from the crowd without being noticed.
After that, the purple frog still spent much happy time being purple, splashing amongst the purple flowers in its pond at home.  But the frog quickly discovered that with her new-found skill, she could travel far and wide without anyone noticing her.
Soon it became winter, and there was a snowflake that was tired of being white.  She saw the purple frog changing color one day, and asked, “Can you teach me the secret of changing color?  I’m so tired of being white.”
So the frog taught the snowflake, and the snowflake fell to earth changing all different shades of the colors of the rainbow.  All the other snowflakes joined in, and sparkly, shimmery rainbow colors snowed down all around.  The snow stayed colored as it lay in ever thickening layers on the ground, the most colorful snowfall ever.  Dots of color, each shade subtly different from that next to it, lay over the landscape as far as the frog could see.  She changed color herself to blend in, and off she went.

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