A Georgia Folktale
One day Br’er Rabbit was skipping down the road heading for his home in the briar patch when he spotted Sis Cow grazing in the field. It was a mighty hot day and Br’er Rabbit was thirsty. Some milk would be real fine on such a warm afternoon, but Sis Cow always refused to let Br’er Rabbit milk her when he asked. So Br’er Rabbit came up with a plan.
“Howdy Sis Cow!” said Br’er Rabbit.
“Howdy yourself, Br’er Rabbit,” said Sis Cow. “How are your folks?”
“Fair to middlin’. How’s Br’er Bull?” Br’er Rabbit asked.
“Oh, he’s doing just fine,” said Sis Cow.
“Say, maybe you could help me out,” Br’er Rabbit said to Sis Cow. “I’d like to get some apples down out of that tree, but it’s too high for me to climb.” He pointed over to a nearby apple tree.
“I ain’t no good at climbing,” said Sis Cow. “I got these hooves that are only good for stomping around on the ground.”
“Well now, you don’t need to climb at all,” said Br’er Rabbit. “Just butt your head against the tree a few times, and the apples will fall down.”
Sis Cow thought about it, then nodded. She backed up a bit and ran at the tree with her horns down.
She butted the tree as hard as she could. But none of the rascally apples fell down. So Sis Cow backed up again and ran at the tree with her horns down.
She butted the tree as hard as she could. This time, her horns got stuck in the tree! She pulled and tugged, but nothing doing.
“Help me out, Br’er Rabbit,” Sis Cow pleaded.
“I’ll run and fetch Br’er Bull!” said Br’er Rabbit.
Well now, Br’er Rabbit ran home to fetch his wife and all of the kids. They brought a big pail to the field and they milked Sis Cow until not a drop of milk was left. Sis Cow kept pulling and snorting, but she couldn’t get free.
“I’ll come back tomorrow for more milk,” Br’er Rabbit said. “Seeing as you’re probably stuck ’til daybreak. Have a good night, Sis Cow!”
Well, Sis Cow tugged and tugged, trying to free her horns from the tree. It took her til morning, but finally she broke loose. Once she was free, she munched on some grass to calm herself down. As she ate, she made a plan to play her own little trick on that troublesome Br’er Rabbit.
Before daybreak, Sis Cow put her head down and stuck her horns back into the holes she had made in the tree, pretending she was still stuck. Course, Br’er Rabbit had come early to the field and had seen Sis Cow grazing, so he knew exactly what was going on.
“How’s things going, Sis Cow?” asked Br’er Rabbit as he hopped across the field.
“I been better, Br’er Rabbit,” said Sis Cow with a devilish grin. “I been stuck here all night. But if you grab my tail, you can help pull me out.”
Oh she’s not fooling me, thought Br’er Rabbit. He told her, “I’m a puny little fool, Sis Cow. If I pull your tail, I might get crushed. So I’m not getting a hair closer!”
Sis Cow was furious! She pulled her horns out of the tree lickety-split and started chasing Br’er Rabbit back to the briar patch. But Br’er Rabbit was too fast, and when Sis Cow stepped into the briar patch she howled in frustration as her her hoof got caught. She pulled it free and ran home angry. Br’er rabbit howled in laughter and went home to enjoy himself a nice cup of milk.