A big, beautiful bird flies over a village in China. The bird belongs to the Jade Emperor. Three men in the village watch the bird. They want to catch it.
The first man takes a knife. The second man takes a sword. The third man takes a bow. They chase the bird. The bird flies faster. The men run up a mountain. The bird flies higher. The first man throws his knife. The second man swings his sword. They both miss the bird. The third man shoots an arrow from his bow. It hits the bird! The bird falls down the mountain. The men can’t reach it. They walk back to the village.
The Jade Emperor waits for his bird. Night comes, but the bird does not.
The Jade Emperor is worried. He looks down from heaven and sees his bird, lying at the bottom of the mountain. The Jade Emperor is angry. He wants to punish the men. He calls his daughter, the princess.
“I will burn the village!” he yells.
“Yes, father,” says the princess. The princess goes to the village. She talks to the three men.
“My father is angry,” she says. “He will destroy your village with fire!”
The three men don’t know what to do. The people in the village are scared.
The three men ask a wise woman for help. The wise woman thinks. She looks at the village. She looks up the mountain. She looks up at Heaven.
“For three days, there must be fire in the village,” the wise woman says.
“You must light lanterns. You must light fires. You must light firecrackers.
The village must be full of fire and noise. The Jade Emperor will see the fire. He will think the village is destroyed.”
The men thank the wise woman. They find red lanterns, firewood, and firecrackers. The fourteenth day of the first month of the year comes. The villagers light the lanterns. They light fires around their homes. They light the firecrackers. POP! POP! POP!
For three days, the village is full of fire and noise. The Jade Emperor and the princess look down from heaven. They see the fire, and they hear the noise.
“Thank you, daughter,” says the Jade Emperor. “You have destroyed the village!”
The princess smiles at her father. She knows the three men and their village are safe.
Everyone waits for the first month of the moon. Once, the festival lasted three nights. Now people celebrate on the fifteenth. Their lanterns fly!
Question: The princess helped the village. Have you helped someone? How did you help?
belong to 属于
sword n. 剑，刀
bow n. 弓，弓形物
chase v. 追捕，追赶
swing v. 挥舞（武器、工具、球拍）
miss v. 错过
arrow n. 箭，矢
reach v. 达到，及到
heaven n. 天，天国，天空
Jade Emperor 玉帝
punish v. 惩罚
princess n. 公主
destroy v. 毁灭，毁坏
wise adj. 明智的，英明的
lantern n. 灯笼，提灯
firecracker n. 爆竹，鞭炮