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|The Road to Oz||L. Frank Baum|
|Page 2 of 4||
Tiddle-widdle-iddle, oom pom-pom,
"Stop it!" cried the shaggy man, earnestly. "Stop that dreadful noise."
The fat man looked at him sadly and began his reply. When he spoke the music changed and the words seemed to accompany the notes. He said--or rather sang:
It isn't a noise that you hear,
"How funny!" exclaimed Dorothy; "he says his breath makes the music."
"That's all nonsense," declared the shaggy man; but now the music began again, and they all listened carefully.
My lungs are full of reeds like those
So as I breathe to live, you know,
"Poor man," said Polychrome; "he can't help it. What a great misfortune it is!"
"Yes," replied the shaggy man; "we are only obliged to hear this music a short time, until we leave him and go away; but the poor fellow must listen to himself as long as he lives, and that is enough to drive him crazy. Don't you think so?"
"Don't know," said Button-Bright. Toto said, "Bow-wow!" and the others laughed.
"Perhaps that's why he lives all alone," suggested Dorothy.
"Yes; if he had neighbors, they might do him an injury," responded the shaggy man.
All this while the little fat musicker was breathing the notes:
Tiddle-tiddle-iddle, oom, pom-pom,
and they had to speak loud in order to hear themselves. The shaggy man said:
"Who are you, sir?"
The reply came in the shape of this sing-song:
I'm Allegro da Capo, a very famous man;
"Why, I b'lieve he's proud of it," exclaimed Dorothy; "and seems to me I've heard worse music than he makes."
"Where?" asked Button-Bright.
"I've forgotten, just now. But Mr. Da Capo is certainly a strange person--isn't he?--and p'r'aps he's the only one of his kind in all the world."
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|The Road to Oz
L. Frank Baum
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