On a crisp fall day in the middle of September, a little city girl was visiting her grandparents on their farm. She loved to play out in the yard. Twisting round and round on a tire swing, lost in her own thoughts, she heard giggles coming from the tall corn field that sat behind the old horse barn. Always curious, but lacking any common sense, she ran in search of the source, disappearing into the yellow fields that towered above her head.
She wandered around the corn field for what felt like hours but soon realized she was positively, hopelessly, irredeemably lost in the maze of corn stalks. She ran in a panic, trying to remember the way out, but could not retrace her steps. Everything looked the same! As the sun began to set in the sky, casting shadows and splashes of red light, she sat down in the dirt with tears in her eyes. At that very moment, she heard humming and noticed a doll sitting right next to her. She grabbed the doll, clutched it to her chest, recognizing the tune her mother would sing to her as a baby.
In the sweet by and by,
We shall meet on that beautiful shore.
We shall sing on that beautiful shore
The melodious songs of the blessed;
And our spirits shall sorrow no more.
It was dark now and the little girl fell asleep, holding tightly to the doll for protection, comfort or maybe hope. Not long after, the search party stumbled upon our little lost soul. She woke to see familiar faces, looking at her with a mix of relief and confusion. For there, in her hand, was not the doll that kept her comforted through the night, but a doll-sized prairie bonnet in old-fashioned floral print. The little girl was found, but the doll was lost forever, finding her now only in dreams.
Years later, stories of girls who wandered off in nearby corn fields claimed they stumbled upon our prairie doll. And again, the child was always found and claimed she was comforted in her hour of need.
That first little girl has grown up, but she still has memories of a certain doll who only reaches her in dreams.
Was this doll a spirit of a lost girl that was never found? We’ll never know for sure but we are told her giggles grow louder as the Harvest Moon approaches.