11 GENNAIO 2024
The street was immersed in the stillness of the night. The houses, tall and severe, seemed bathed in moonlight and looked into the city through their dark windows. Not a soul was to be seen. The cot squeaked loudly in the silence on the uneven cobblestones in the street. The moon always followed at some distance. So they travelled along streets and roads, but not a man in sight. When the strange car passed the church, the old golden rooster at the top of the steeple crowed: "Hey, you! What are you doing?" cried Pierino from his cradle. "Singing for the first time!" the rooster answered him. "But where are the people?" asked Pierino again. "They are all asleep. Only when I sing for the third time will the early birds get up." "I can't wait that long. I want to go into the woods: all the animals must see me!" "Kiddo," Sister Moon whispered softly, "haven't you had enough yet?" "No. Give me light, good moon, give me light!" And the strange little cart continued on its way. They drove through the town, into the fields and the forest. Everything, too, was plunged into silence and darkness. No animals could be seen. Only a cat was perched on the branch of a tree, watching Pierino with shining eyes. "Are they the tall animals?" "Are they asleep," meowed the cat, "can't you hear them snoring in their dens?" "Boy," said the moon, "have you not had enough yet?" "No, no, ancoa ancoa; give me light, good moon." And the strange little group emerged from the forest and among the clumps and ferns reached the edge of the world, high up in the blue sky. Now that was fun! All the little stars were awake and shining in the night. "Pierino shouted, throwing himself headlong into the midst of the stars, so much so that some of them fell to the ground in fright. Suddenly Pierino bumped into the tip of the moon's nose, which turned dark red. Sora Luna's lantern went out and all the little stars closed their eyes. Suddenly there was such darkness in the sky that one could cut it with a knife. Pierino was terrified. And finally, deep down in the sky a reddish ball peeped out. It was Messer Sole rising majestically from the sea. "Boy," cried he indignantly. "What are you doing here in my sky?" And in two and two-four Messer Sole took the child by the collar and threw him into the water. Let him learn to swim! And then? What happened to him? If you and I had not arrived and taken him in our little boat, he would surely have drowned!