Little Boo Boo Snorkle was following the others, down the jungle trail, through twisting vines and dusty paths, which led to the only water around. Sweet, fresh water which had recently fallen from the darkening skies many miles from his home. He had a secure hold on the little tail of his brother who in turn had a hold on the tail of their mother, who in turn had a hold on the tail of their father who had taken the lead upon this winding, adventurous journey.

As they turned this way and then that way and then this way again, the head of this jungle-train would be going one way and the rear would be going the other. Can you picture that? Let’s sing a little song as we watch them …

“Swing your little tail
Little Boo Boo Snorkle
You’re like a ship’s propeller
Steering from behind
You may be only little
But you have great power
So swing your little tail
As through the jungle you wind”

I’ll let you keep singing as I continue with the story. So there were the four elephants pushing through the thick overgrowth, trying to make it to the watering hole before it became dark. Daddy Elephant would trumpet loudly every time there was a fork in the path to let the others know they were changing direction. One trumpet meant we’re going right, two, left, three, duck (although this was mainly for Mother Elephant) and four, it’s time to rest.

Well the four trumpets had sounded. It was time to rest and eat and after an hour of sleeping and filling their giant tummies off they went again. Not much further to go … when suddenly … Daddy Elephant started making some very strange noises. He started trumpeting; but wouldn’t stop and this caused great confusion down the elephant line. Father went to the left, Mother to the right, Brother followed Mother and Boo Boo didn’t know which way to go. His little tail was already in overdrive because a swarm of flies had decided play hide and seek around him and he was madly swishing and swashing trying to shoo them away.

Next thing you know Boo Boo had let go of his brother’s tail and was flying like a helicopter through the trees. Or should I say ‘elicopter’! He flew here and he flew there. He flew everywhere and his little tail was spinning so fast it propelled him way ahead of all the others; but in the process, wonderfully cleared the path for them. Hellllllppppppp me, someone hellllllppppppp! In and out of the treetops he flew, narrowly escaping bumping his head as he went. What was lovely though was that his little head did brush the oversized blossoms up high and rarely seen by elephant eye, and they released a heavenly perfume which enabled his family to follow and find him. Yes, they found him, eventually. Where? You guessed it … at the watering hole, having a wee ’old time splishing and a-splashing and cooling off. His family thought he was lost; but he knew exactly where he was and he was loving every minute of it.

No Boo Boo Snorkle wasn’t lost, he was just ahead of himself and in the turmoil of all that trumpeting, he had found himself and his role in life. He was a natural born leader and he grew into a very large, fun-loving Snorkle. He also found out what had been the trouble with his father all those years ago … too many salty peanuts and not enough water, the salt had caused a chain reaction, hence the trumpet sounds became stuck on replay …

© 2016 – present Liana Wendy Howarth

image courtesy of


7 thoughts on “THE LITTLE ELEPHANT WHO LOST HIS WAY (A Children’s Short Story)

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