Art by: Katie Cranney Age 6 (pictured – Katie and big brother Conor)

Katie’s Rainbow One shiny sunny day Katie and Conor went for a walk. They lived in Ireland where it rains a lot and sunny days were great! As they walked along the sun grew brighter and brighter. “I’m so warm” said Conor, “let’s sit under the shade of this tree for a while”. They settled into a warm mossy patch just under a shady branch and soon they fell asleep. Through the trees drifted some music; music that no human had ever heard before because it was the music of the water sprites.


Water Sprites were even more magical than fairies! They could live under the water or above the water could EVEN fly through the air. In her sleep, Katie dreamed she stood up and followed the music. She could hear Conor calling her to come back because he was her big brother and always looked after her but she just couldn’t resist the music. She walked on towards the sparkling river and could see the water sprites dancing to the enchanting music and the water droplets splishing high above their heads.


Suddenly they stopped. Stopped as still as little statues. “A human child”. The whisper went round until it seemed as if all the sprites were whispering at once. One of the water sprites shook the water from his wings and flew to where Katie stood. “How dare you invade our secret place” he said. Poor Katie was so afraid that she started to cry. “I’m so sorry, I heard your music and I wanted to watch you dance with all my heart!” The water sprite looked at her and said “No human child is allowed to walk on our ground! You must prove yourself worthy” “I can dance too” said Katie.


The water sprite laughed! “Dance?? You think you can dance?? We have been dancing for centuries for the first Irish Kings and you think you can come along and dance as if it were easy?” Katie pouted. “My Granny Mary can dance and my mummy can dance and my brother can dance and I CAN dance” “I tell you what” said the sprite. “If you can prove you can dance you are free to go”.


Katie threw back her head of dark curls, crossed her right foot in front of her left and began to dance. So lightly and so nimbly her feet moved it was as if they had wings. She whirled her way across the river, jumping and landing perfectly; twisting and spinning so much that a great mist of water droplets rose high above her head.


She danced so beautifully and so gracefully that she danced right away from the water sprites who couldn’t see because of the mist. Katie!! Katie!! She could hear Conor calling her in the distance. “Katie waken up, you were laughing in your sleep”. “Did I sleep for long” she asked “Oh AGES” replied Conor. But whilst you were sleeping, a great mist came down and as the bright sun shone and reflected off it, it formed the most beautiful rainbow.


Conor was very clever and knew all sorts of things about rainbows. “There must be a river nearby and a great commotion of splashing to cause all that mist!”


Katie was glad that Conor was clever but she was also glad that she had indeed danced for the water sprites and not just dreamed it and it would be her secret forever. From that day on, every time Katie saw a rainbow in the sky she thought of her own Riverdance and the magic of that day.



Copyright: Alicia Newell