Once there was a little girl who used to make a living by selling matches ill the street. It was New Year’s Eve and people all around were merrymaking and celebrating.

The little girl was sitting beside a fountain in the freezing cold. She was wearing torn and ragged clothes and had no shoes on her feet. No one had bought her matchboxes that (lay and she was frightened to go home because she knew her father would scold tier for coming back without selling anything. She wanted to light a match to keep herself warm but was scared that her father would scold her for wasting a matchstick. Finally, unable to bear the cold anymore. she took out one matchstick and lit it. Lo! She was sitting in front of a warn) stove. She reached out her hands to feel the heart but the fire soon died out. Then she lit another match and saw a din-[let table with a roast goose on it. She chuckled in delight but after a while. this match also died out. She looked up at the sky and saw a falling star. tier grandmother used to say, “A falling star is a soul that has reached the sky.” When she Struck another match she saw her grandmother.

That night, she burnt all her matchsticks. wishing to keep tier grandmother with her. Finally, together they Hew up to heaven. The next morning, the little match girl lay frozen to death. with a smile on her lips. No one would ever know the wonderful dreams she had had, the previous night.

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