I read it aloud here and provide the text below. Even as an adult, I enjoy being read to and thought you might too.
Venus, Iris, and Mayor Boggle
by Marty Nemko
(to be illustrated)
Last we saw Venus, he had saved Iris's life by eating the beetles that were destroying her. Venus ate the beetles even though he knew that eating them would kill him. Fortunately, Iris then saved Venus's life by getting him to cough up the beetles.
So Venus and Iris were heroes to everyone in Bogville. Indeed, some Boggies painted a mural of Venus and Iris in Bogville's town square.
Venus and Iris were heroes to everyone that is, except Mayor Boggle. He was jealous that they were now more famous than he.
So he told Venus and Iris, "FarAwayBog School needs teachers. You both would be great. You're heroes. You can teach there!"
"Thank you, Mayor Boggle, that's so nice of you," said Venus.
Really, it wasn't nice of the mayor. He just wanted them far away from town so the Boggies would forget about them.
While Venus and Iris were gone, Mayor Boggle, to make himself more famous, made big promises to the Boggies he couldn't keep: "If you re-elect me, I'll get rid of all the mosquitoes in the bog."
Venus and Iris worked hard teaching--and you know that teaching is not easy. (picture of Boggie students fooling around.)
And when the school year ended, Venus and Iris returned to town and saw that the big mural of them had been replaced by an even bigger mural with Mayor Boggle's face and "End Mosquitoes. Re-Elect Boggle."
Still, many of the Boggies had not forgotten about Venus and Iris. Indeed they were glad to see their heroes. That made Mayor Boggle mad. So, using his sweetest voice, the mayor said, "You did a great job as teachers. So, as a reward, I'll give you a carrot farm: the land, the seeds, and even a Boggie to help you."
"Oh thank you, Mayor Boggle!" replied Iris.
Of course, the farm was even further from town than the school was. And the land was so hard that carrots, which even in good soil take a verrry long time to grow, would take forever. And to make sure the farm failed, the Boggie that Mayor Boggle sent was Bogwump, who no one wanted to hire because he was lazy and steals.
Venus and Iris tried and tried to grow carrots--without much help from Bogwump. After a year, only three carrots came up and Bogwump ate all three.
Venus and Iris returned to town. Now "End Mosquitoes, Re-Elect Boggle" posters were pasted all over town.
Venus and Iris went to Mayor Boggle's house and apologized for not producing any carrots, and he replied, "Don't worry. I'll give you another chance. Go five miles east to SandyBog. There are water lilies there. Just bring them back and give them to the Boggies. It will make them happy. I'll pay you a lot of money."
But in the next room, Mrs Boggle overheard and raced in. "Mr. Boggle, you know very well that SandyBog is filled with deadly snakes. How could you send Venus and Iris there?!"
And Venus and Iris finally realized that Mayor Boggle was not their friend.
So Venus and Iris returned to where they first met, the quiet bog just outside of town, where lots of flytraps and an occasional iris lived a simple but happy life.
Oh, and Venus and Iris had a baby: a beautiful iris that just happened to have a few traps.
Meanwhile, while admiring a poster of himself, a swarm of mosquitoes bit Mayor Boggle. He itched and he itched for a whole week! Do you feel bad for him?
Do you know a kid like Mayor Boggle who's mean to someone they're jealous of? What should you do about it?