Tuesday, April 28, 2009

30 Days: "The 99th Sleep Sheep"

The 99th Sleep Sheep
Shauna Leggat

1-2-3 Times were hard.
4-5-6 Not just anyone could land a job as a Sleep Sheep these days.
7-8-9…and if they did, they were certain to be on impeccable
…22 here goes…light lift, passé
…42 softly, now…petite relevé
99?…Christia-a-a-n! Oh, where’s that bla-a-a-a-ast-ed sheep?

“One for a-a-a-ll and all for o-o-o-ne!” Sleep Sheep Number 99
crashed through the sleeping child’s dreams with a swoop of his sword
and a whoosh of his cape.


100 Swedish Sleep Sheep from the land of the Midnight Sun,
Jobs perfectly executed; their wool impeccably done.
Their bedtime charges sound asleep for yet another night
Till #99 screams into their dreams, delivering a waking fright.

“How did he-e-e ever land this job?” Whispered 23.
“I heard his m-a-a-ma-a-a came from high breeding,” replied 24
under her breath.
“Well, no d-ou-ou-oubt he had connections,”said 76.
“That’s what I call a bla-a-ack sheep,” hissed 77.

They were right. Chris Beaumont, Sleep Sheep #99, was sorely out of
place. As the rank and file of Sleep Sheep deftly danced their way
through dreams of the world’s dozing children in soft pastels and
satin slippers, 99 stood out like a hang nail on a hoof.

“He’s gonna get it now!”
“It’s about time. He makes us all look ba-a-a-d.”

“99, Report!” blasted Sergeant Chechetti. “What in the name of
the Northern Lights do ewe think eue’re doing?”

“It’s Dumas, Sir, Alexander Dumas. I read at night, and well, I
love his creativity, his imagination, and especially his Musketeers.
D’ar-ta-a-a-agnon. So bold and wild and, and …liberating! I feel
their escapades. They Da-a-ance through my mind, and, it’s ballet,

“Last week it was Quixote-- the windmills nearly blinded that Jordan
kid; the week before it was Twain, Huck Finn and his raft, and your
Mississippi got Wolfie a whopper of a paddling! How was his mother to
know the difference between river water and bedwetting? Probably scar
the kid for life. I have no choice but to put you on proba-a-a-tion.
99, Recite the creed.”

Yes, Sir.
1. It is and honor and privilege to be selected as a Swedish Sleep
2. The great State of Slumber counts on us to lull minds through
3. An uncluttered mind + a rowdy number = deficient slumber.
4. Excessive action during REM destroys the Doze, causing the nose
to snore no more.

“And the fifth?”

5. Focus, Sir. I need to focus.

“That’s correct. Ewe’re a Dozeologist, 99. A
Cat-Napster, a Slumber Number with an vital job to do--leaving our
clients mindlessly musing, simple siestas, ganz geschloffen. Take some
time off—a little Rest and Repose. Catch ewe’re own forty winks,
99, and pull ewe’rself together. Otherwise, you leave me no choice.
It’ll be bed curtains, lamb chops, 99-cent McMutton menu. Get my

With heavy heart and drooping tail, Sleep Sheep #99 nodded, turned and
sheepishly exited Chechetti’s stall, tears welling in his eyes.

(500 WORDCOUNT-oops! Here’s what happens: 99 gets into dance and
opera; becomes #100, Kids wake motivated, creative, alert, focused and
imaginative for the day. Position is EVERYTHING)

In the 100th spot, Christian Beaumont leapt into their dreams

And with a cape and a rose, half a mask on his nose,
Grand Jete, Relevé,
Batement, Developé…
And a voice that resounded from our sheep far from grounded,


Children everywhere awoke that morning, exited, motivated, ready for
dreams to come to life.

100 Swedish Sleep Sheep from the land of the Midnight Sun,
Jobs perfectly executed; their hooves impeccably done.
Bedtime charges wide awake-Dawn ends another night.
100 ignites waking dreamsCreativity Streams
Imagination and she-e-ear delight!

Copyrighted by Shauna Leggat, 2009


Taffy said...

What a great imagination!

Yamile said...

What a cute story! I loved it!

Kiirsi said...

I LOVE and ADORE this! If I beg you--pretty please with a cherry on top--will you finish it and post it somewhere? Please?? It is grand!! I absolutely love the way you used the words! And what a cute idea! I would love to have this as a picture book on my shelf if you pursue publishing!