ISSN 2359-4101

Brazilian Literature in Translation / Literatura Brasileña en Traducción

Issue / Numero

year/año: 2012
issue/numero: # 06



Little Riding Hoods


Author | Autor: José Roberto Torero e Marcus Aurelius Pimenta


Translated by Marilia Pirillo | Translated by Alison Entrekin



Little Blue Riding Hood



Once upon a time, in a small village next to a wood, there was a girl with skyblue

eyes.

Everyone liked her a lot, and her grandmother even more – so much so that

she sewed her a little cape with a hood. The cape was made of blue velvet and the

girl never took it off, not even when she put on plays in the backyard. As a result,

everyone in the village started calling her Little Blue Riding Hood.

One day her mother summoned her and said:

‘Little Blue Riding Hood, please take this blueberry pie to your grandma, as

you always do.’

‘OK, Mummy,’ said Little Blue Riding Hood.

‘And be careful, OK? Go straight to your grandma’s house and don’t stray

from the path, because the woods are dangerous.’

The girl put the pie in a basket, gave her mother a kiss and set off.

Along the way she sang:

‘Through the woods I go,

So very alone,

Poor little me,

All on my own.’

Little Blue Riding Hood walked into the woods. With each step the path grew

narrower and the woods darker. Suddenly, the wolf stepped out from behind some

bushes and said:

‘Hello, girl with the little blue riding hood. What do you have in that basket?’

‘A blueberry pie.’

‘For me?’

‘No, sir. I’m taking it to my fragile, defenceless grandma who lives in the middle

of the woods.’

The wolf thought: ‘Little Blue Riding Hood is pretty silly. I’m going to eat her

granny, then her and I’ll have the blueberry pie for dessert.’

He couldn’t eat her right there, because a hunter might hear her screams. But

he had an idea and said:

‘See that trail there? Why don’t you go that way and pick a bunch of blue forget-

me-nots for your granny? I bet she’d like that.’

‘What a good idea, sir. I’ll do that! Oh, if everyone was as nice as you...’

So Little Blue Riding Hood took the other trail and skipped off, happily picking

flowers. Meanwhile, the wolf took the shorter path to the grandmother’s house.

When he got there, he knocked on the door.

‘Knock knock knock.’

‘Who is it?’ called the old woman from inside.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter,’ said the wolf in a little girl’s voice. ‘I’ve brought

you a blueberry pie. Open the door, Grandma.’

The grandmother got out of bed, picked up her shotgun and opened the door.

When she saw the wolf standing there, she didn’t think twice. She pulled the

trigger and – bang! – shot him in the chest.

Then she put the wolf in the oven to roast and lay down to wait for Little Blue

Riding Hood.

The girl came walking slowly through the woods, picking flowers, listening to

the birds, playing with squirrels, drinking water from springs and singing her song:

‘Through the woods I go,

So very alone,

Poor little me,

All on my own.’

When she finally got to her grandmother’s house, she knocked on the door:

‘Knock knock knock.’

‘Who is it?’ called her grandmother.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter. May I come in?’

‘Yes, my dear. I couldn’t wait for you to get here.’

Little Blue Riding Hood opened the door and approached the bed. Her grandmother

was under the covers and wearing an enormous bonnet, so that only part

of her face was visible.

‘What big ears you have, Grandma.’ said the girl.

‘All the better to hear wolves with!’

‘What big eyes you have.’

‘All the better to see wolves at a distance!’

‘What big hands you have.’

‘All the better for holding large chunks of wolf meat!’

‘What a big nose you have.’

‘All the better for smelling wolves in the oven!’

‘What a big mouth you have.’

‘All the better for eating wolf meat!’ shouted the grandmother with glee. Then

she guffawed heartily and said, ‘This plan of ours never fails, does it, Little Blue

Riding Hood?’

‘It’s true, Grandma. The wolves always fall for it.’

Then they took the tray out of the oven and gobbled down the wolf in one sitting.

Afterwards, they lay down for a nap. Their bellies were full and they were soon

snoring loudly. So loudly that a passing hunter heard the noise, thought someone

was being sick and decided to have a look.

When he opened the door and saw the leftover food on their plates, the hunter

was angry. He had never imagined that he’d see the wolf in pieces, eaten by the

girl and her grandmother.

He pointed his shotgun at them and said:

‘You’re under arrest!’

‘Us? What for, Mr Hunter?’

‘That wolf belonged to an endangered species that is disappearing from the

woods. And do you know why they’re disappearing? Because you two have been

eating the poor things.’

He handcuffed them both and marched them down to the police station.

The next day, Little Blue Riding Hood’s mother went down to the station

and paid a fine to free her daughter and mother.

And then, with the exception of the wolf, they all lived happily ever after:

The hunter because he’d done his job of protecting an endangered species.

The grandmother because she was out of prison.

And Little Blue Riding Hood because she’d learned a lesson:

‘You shouldn’t kill animals, especially if they belong to an endangered species.’



Little Green Riding Hood



Once upon a time, in a small village next to a lush, green wood, there was a girl

with emerald-green eyes.

Everyone liked her a lot, and her granny even more – so much so that she gave

her a little cape with a hood as a present. The cape was dollar-green, that is, forest-

green, and she wore it everywhere she went. As a result, people started calling

her Little Green Riding Hood.

Everything was calm and peaceful until one day her mother said:

‘Little Green Riding Hood, please take this lime pie to your grandma in the

middle of the woods. She’s too tight with her money to buy sweets and if we don’t

send her something every now and then, she’ll grow as thin as a rake.’

‘OK, Mummy, I’ll take it to her. Can I have some money for the bus?’

‘But there are no buses where you’re going!’

‘Oh, yes, I forgot. Then can I have some money to get my shoe re-heeled?’

‘I’ve never seen a girl so fond of money! You’re just like your grandmother.

Fine, here you go. But be careful. Don’t stray from the path, because the woods

are dangerous.’

The girl put the pie in a basket, gave her mother a kiss and set off.

Along the way she sang:

‘Off I go into the wood,

Grandma’s little honey,

When I get to her house,

I’ll ask her for some money.’

Little Green Riding Hood went into the woods. She walked and walked until,

suddenly, the wolf stepped out of some bushes.

‘Hello, girl with the little green riding hood.’

‘Hello, sir.’

‘What do you have in that basket?’

‘A lime pie.’

‘For me?’

‘Only if you can pay for it.’

‘I don’t have two pennies to rub together.’

‘Then I’m going to take it to my grandmother who lives in the green house in

the middle of the woods.’

The wolf thought to himself: ‘Everyone says that the little old lady who lives

in the green house had a lot of jewellery. I’m going to eat the granny, then the girl,

and take the jewels.’

But he couldn’t attack Little Green Riding Hood there in the middle of the

path, because a passing hunter might hear the girl’s screams.

The wolf had an idea and said:

‘See that trail there? It leads to your grandma’s house too. It’s a bit longer, but

there’s a wishing well that people throw coins into. Why don’t you go that way and

take some for yourself?’

‘What a good idea! I’ll do just that!’

So Little Green Riding Hood took the other trail, where she gathered a lot of

coins and lost all notion of time.

Meanwhile, the wolf took the shorter path to the grandmother’s house. When

he got there, he rapped on the door:

‘Rat-a-tat-tat.’

‘Who is it?’ called the old woman from inside.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter. I’ve brought you a lime pie,’ said the wolf in a

little girl’s voice.

The grandmother got up, made sure the safe was locked (she suspected that

her granddaughter only visited because she had her eye on her jewels) and opened

the door. She didn’t even have a chance to open her mouth in surprise because the

wolf pounced on her and devoured her in one go. Gulp!

Then he thought about stealing her jewels, but seeing as how he needed to

digest the grandmother, he lay down to wait for Little Green Riding Hood.

When she finally arrived, she rapped on the door:

‘Rat-a-tat-tat.’

‘Who is it?’ called the wolf, imitating the grandmother’s voice.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter.’

‘Come in, darling, I couldn’t wait for you to get here.’

‘Little Green Riding Hood slowly opened the door and approached the bed.

The wolf was under the covers and wearing a bonnet, so that only part of his face

was visible. The girl sensed that something was wrong and said:

‘What big ears you have, Grandma.’

‘All the better to hear coins clinking with!’

‘What big eyes you have.’

‘All the better to read bank statements with!’

‘What big hands you have.’

‘All the better to count money quickly with!’

‘What a big nose you have.’

‘All the better to smell banknotes with!’

‘What a big mouth you have.’

Then the wolf stopped imitating the grandmother and said in his terrible voice:

‘All the better to eat you with!’

Then he pounced on the girl and wolfed her down. And off he went to take

another nap.

Because his belly was very full, he was soon snoring loudly. So loudly that a

hunter heard the noise and decided to see what it was.

When he opened the door and saw the wolf snoozing with that bulging belly,

the hunter thought: ‘Wow, that’s a rare breed of wolf! If I skin him, I can sell his hide

for a mint and get rich.’

So the hunter loaded bullets into his shotgun, took aim and – BOOM! –

killed the wolf.

Afterward, as he was carefully cutting open the wolf’s belly so as not to ruin

the hide, he saw Little Green Riding Hood and her grandmother inside. Because opportunities

to make a little extra cash don’t come along every day, the hunter said:

‘Look, I could get you two out of there, but it’ll take me several hours, so before

I begin I’d like to know if you can pay me for my efforts.’

‘You can have the jewels in the safe,’ said the grandmother.

‘And I’ve got some coins that I found on the way here,’ said Little Green Riding

Hood.

The hunter accepted the jewels and the coins and got them out of the wolf’s belly.

And the moral of the story is: ‘Money doesn’t bring happiness and attracts all

kinds of scoundrels.’



Little Black Riding Hood


Once upon a time, in a village by a very dark wood, there was a girl with black

hair and eyes.

Everyone liked her, and her grandmother even more – so much so that she decided

to make her a little cape with a hood. It was very elegant, all in black velvet,

and the girl wore it everywhere. As a result, people started calling her Little Black

Riding Hood.

One day, Little Black Riding Hood’s mother said:

‘Honey, please take these blackberries to your grandma in the middle of the woods.’

‘OK, Mummy, I’ll be back in a jiffy.’

‘But don’t stray from the path because the woods are dangerous.’

Then the girl put the berries in a basket, gave her mother a kiss and set off.

Along the way, she sang:

‘Off I go,

Fast as I can,

To take these berries

To my dear old gran.’

Little Black Riding Hood went into the forest. With each step the trees grew

thicker and the woods darker. But she wasn’t afraid and just sang her little song.

‘Off I go,

Fast as I can,

To take these berries

To my dear old gran.’

And on she went until, suddenly, the wolf stepped out from behind some

bushes and said:

‘Hello, girl with the little black riding hood.’

‘Hello, sir.’

‘What have you got in that basket?’

‘Some blackberries.’

‘For me?’

‘No, they’re for my grandma who lives in the middle of the forest.’

The wolf thought to himself: ‘My hunger is endless. I’ll eat this little girl one

day, for sure.’

So he said:

‘See that trail over there? It leads to your grandmother’s house. It’s a little longer,

but it’s lined with flowers called everlastings. Why don’t you go that way and

pick some flowers for her.’

‘Excellent idea, sir! I shall do just that!’

While Little Black Riding Hood took the other trail, the wolf took a shortcut to

the grandmother’s house. When he got there, he rang the doorbell:

‘Ding-dong.’

‘Who is it?’ called the old woman from inside.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter,’ said the wolf in a little girl’s voice. ‘I’ve brought

you some blackberries.’

The grandmother put on her glasses and opened the door. When she saw that

it was the wolf and not Little Black Riding Hood, she said:

‘Oh, it’s you! I knew you’d come for me one day. Come in, don’t mind the mess.’

The wolf sat on the bed and said:

‘So you’ve been waiting for me?’

‘I knew you’d come. Actually, you took your time.’

‘I’m going to have to swallow you now,’ said the wolf.

‘I know,’ said the grandmother slowly closing her eyes. Then the wolf gulped

her down in one go, so quickly that she didn’t even have time to say ‘farewell’.

They the wolf lay down calmly on her bed to wait for Little Black Riding Hood.

The girl came walking slowly through the woods, but she was so slow that

time got away from her. We she finally got to her grandmother’s house, she rang

the doorbell:

‘Ding-dong.’

‘Who is it?’ called the wolf from inside, with a croaky voice.

‘It’s me, your granddaughter.’

‘Come in, darling.’

Little Black Riding Hood opened the door and headed for her grandmother’s

bed. On her way there she caught sight of herself in a mirror and saw that she was

older. She was a woman already.

‘Gee, I think I spent a long time picking flowers.’

‘Yes, you’re quite different,’ said the wolf.

Little Black Riding Hood went over to the mirror and, looking at her face, said:

‘Why, what big ears I have.’

And she answered herself too:

‘Oh, it’s because I can wear earrings now!’

‘What big eyes I have.’

‘It’s because I can see more things!’

‘What big hands I have.’

‘It’s because now I can reach things I couldn’t before!’

‘What a big nose I have.’

‘It’s because now I can follow my own nose!’

‘What a big mouth I have.’

‘I think it’s because I can speak for myself now!’ said Little Black Riding Hood.

Then she turned to the wolf and asked:

‘Where’s my grandma?’

‘I swallowed her,’ he replied.

‘And who are you?’

‘I’m the wolf of all wolves. They call me Time.’

‘Are you going to swallow me too?’

‘Yes, but not now. Shall we eat these blackberries?’

They ate a lot and took a nap. Because their bellies were full, they were soon

snoring loudly, so loudly that a passing hunter heard the noise and decided to see

what it was.

When he opened the door the hunter saw the wolf and fired his shotgun. But

he missed his target every time.

‘Damn it, Wolf, I just can’t beat you!’ exclaimed the hunter.

‘That’s impossible, Hunter. But we can be friends.’

‘How can we be friends if you’re going to swallow me one day?’

‘Well, we can be friends until then.’

And with that the wolf took the two last blackberries, gave one to the hunter

and the other to Little Black Riding Hood, and jumped out the window saying:

‘See you soon.’

And they were all happy:

The hunter because he recognized that he wasn’t going to beat the wolf.

The grandmother because she’d led a happy life and the wolf had taken his

time to come for her.

And Little Black Riding Hood because she’d learned a lesson:

‘You should eat blackberries very slowly and enjoy each one.’






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