Journey With Story


Journey With Story

The Golden Goose-E:163

The Golden Goose

The Golden Goose-E:163

Discover how a poor woodcutter lad manages to win the hand of a princess by making her laugh in this Grimm’s fairytale.  A fun and silly tale to enjoy with your little ones.  An episode from storytelling podcast, Journey with Story.(duration 14 minutes)

If your little listener wants to ask a question or share a drawing inspired by one of our episodes, please connect with us on Instagram@journeywithstory    Or at  We love hearing from our listeners!

Do you love Journey with Story?  Subscribing or writing reviews helps us grow.

Did you know Kathleen is also a children’s picture book author? You can find out more about her books here  

And you can buy her Christmas Picture Book (ages 4-8) here

Discover the Secret of Making a Princess Laugh in this Fun Fairytale

November 18th  

#163 The Golden Goose

Do you know anyone who is very funny?  What does he or she do that makes you laugh?  What is the funniest sight you have ever seen?  If you had to try and make someone laugh, what would you do? 

Hello everyone.  I’m Kathleen Pelley.  Welcome to Journey with Story.  Today’s episode is an old fairy tale about a poor woodcutter lad who manages to win the hand of a princess by making her laugh. I wonder how he does that?  Well, lets see. 

Oh, but first… 

Big thanks to Agape Holt for sending us a photo of you holding your marvelous drawing inspired by The Scroobius Pip episode. Well done! 

Now…Let’s take a journey with… The Golden Goose by the Brothers Grimm and adapted a bit by me.  

Long ago, there once lived a woodcutter and his wife who had three sons.  Now the eldest two sons were big and brawny and their parents were forever praising them to the heavens.  But the youngest lad was not so big or brawny and his parents and brothers were forever making fun of him, and even called him feeble and simple and not a bit of use to anyone.  

One day the eldest son wanted to go to the forest to cut wood. The mother praised him for being such a useful boy, and before he set out she gave him some of her best fruitcake for his lunch, and a bottle of cider to wash it down. While the lad was walking through the forest, he met a little old man who said to him: “Can I have a bit of your cake and a swig of your cider. I’m so terribly hungry and thirsty.” 

The eldest son replied: “Be off with you, you horrible, little man.” 

And so, the little man hobbled off into the forest. 

The next day, the second eldest son went out to the forest to cut wood. Before he set out, his mother praised him for being such a useful boy, and gave him an apple pie and a flask of elderberry wine for his lunch.  As he was walking through the woods, he came across the same little old man as his brother had.  “Please,” said the little, old man, “Can I have a piece of your pie and a sip of your wine?  I am ever so thirsty and hungry.” 

“Get away with you,” shouted the lad.  “Why should I share my food with the likes of you? Go and get a job and buy your own food, why don’t you.” 

 And so, once more the little old man hobbled off into the woods. 

On the third day the youngest brother went off into the forest to chop wood. His mother and brothers made fun of him as he set off – “Who does he think he is? Why he won’t be able to chop wood for the life of him.  Look how scrawny and feeble he is.  And he’ so foolish and simple, he will probably loose his way before he even finds the forest.” 

But the poor lad paid them no heed as he packed himself a stale loaf, a little lump of old cheese, a flask of water and set off for the forest. 

He had not gone far when he met the same little old man as his brothers had met.  

“I don’t suppose you’d share your lunch with me,” sighed the little old man. 

“Why not?” the lad replied.  I” don’t have much to share, but you are welcome to join me – after all I would be glad of the company.”  

And so the two of them sat down and ate happily together. When they had finished, the little old man whispered, “”I am going to tell you a secret, because I can tell you have a good heart and a kind manner about you.   There’s an oak tree by the river near a very large rock. Chop it down, and you will find among the roots something very fine.” 

The lad thanked the little old man and went off and chopped down that tree, there down among the roots, he spied something bright that sparkled in the sunlight. 

It was a goose – a goose with feathers made of pure gold! 

The lad realized that he was in luck, and thought to himself: “Why should I go home now and suffer the insults of my parents and brothers? They will take this valuable bird from me, and I shall have nothing.” So there and then the lad decided to run away from home and seek his fortune in the world.   

He put the golden goose under his arm and set out for the town. That night he stayed at a nearby inn, paying for his room with one of the feathers. But it’s not everyday that someone steps into an inn and pays for a room with a feather made of pure gold. News of this simple lad with a golden goose spread fast. 

That night, while the lad slept, the innkeepers’ three daughters poked their heads out from the hallway.   Each of them hatched a plan to steal that goose  

Later that night, the innkeeper’s eldest daughter tiptoed into the lad’s room. She reached to grab the sleeping goose with the golden feathers. But the moment her hand touched the goose, it stuck! Try as she might, she could not remove her hand. “I may as well fall asleep,” she thought. “I just hope that by morning my hand will be free. Then I’ll go back to my room before anyone finds out I even came in here.”  

But a little later that same night, the innkeeper’s middle daughter slowly opened the door. She, too, tiptoed into the room meaning to steal the golden goose. But much to her surprise, snoring in the corner was her big sister! She tapped her big sister on the shoulder to wake her up. Alas! The moment she touched her sister’s arm she, too, was stuck. 

And a little later that same night, who should come creep, creep, creeping into that room?  Yes, – the innkeeper’s youngest daughter.  When she saw both of her older sisters snoring in the corner, she went over and tapped the arm of her middle sister.  Instantly her fingers were stuck fast. 

The next morning they all awakened.   The lad yawned and said; “Now that was a good night’s sleep. It’s time to move on.” He took the golden goose and left the inn, not paying any attention to the three sisters who were stuck behind him all tripping over each other’s feet as he walked along. 

A farmer hoeing his field saw this strange sight. He said, “I’ve never seen a golden goose before, but if those girls are going to get a piece of it, there’s no reason I shouldn’t, either.” He grabbed the youngest daughter by the hand, whereupon his hand instantly became stuck to her hand, and he had to stagger along behind them.  

Then a little further down the road, a miller caught sight of this golden goose with a trail of people behind it, and he too ran forward, thinking he would like a piece of this good fortune for himself.  But of course, as soon as he grabbed the farmer’s hand, he was stuck fast. 

Now the five of them trundled on and soon saw two woodcutters coming out of the woods the farmer, the miller and the three sisters called to the woodcutters to come and set them loose. But the woodcutters thought they were being motioned to stay away from the golden goose.  

And of course, that they would not do, for they too wanted to have some piece of this golden goose, and they rushed forward to grab the miller and…. stuck fast. 

So now there were seven of them stuck, trailing the lad and his goose. After awhile they entered a kingdom where a large crowd was gathered in front of the king’s castle. 

“What’s going on?” asked the lad to someone in the crowd. 

“They’re all trying to make the princess laugh,” he said. “She hasn’t laughed in years, and the king says the first worthy fellow who can make her laugh will marry her.” 

“Honestly, father,” the lad heard the voice of a princess coming from the balcony, “if there’s something that’s not funny, it’s a bunch of silly boys trying to win my heart!” 

“But dear girl,” the lad heard the king plead, “won’t you give the next one a teeny, weensy chance?  Number 542- Step up!” 

The princess threw her arms in despair and whirled around. As she did, she saw the lad looking around as if nothing at all is the matter, with seven people tripping behind him, all attached to one another. It was hilarious!  

She laughed and laughed. 

The king, however, was none too pleased that this foolish lad – a woodcutter of all things – should marry into the royal family. “I said a worthy young man,” frowned the king, crossing his arms. “A nobleman. From a good family. Not a woodcutter!” 

The lad shrugged. “Whether or not I marry the princess,” he said, “with just a few golden feathers, we’ll all eat like royalty. Come, one and all!”  

At that very moment all seven followers, who had been tugging and pulling with all their might to break free, suddenly came loose.  

Springing backward, they collapsed into a heaping pile of arms, and elbows, knees and legs, and spinning hats. The princess roared with laughter once more. 

“Oh father,” she said, gasping for air from laughter, “he will always keep me laughing! Besides, he’s the only fellow who ever offered us anything. Everyone else wanted to get something from us.” 

“That’s true,” said the king, rubbing his chin. “Twice he’s made you laugh. And he’s a generous fellow. Not to mention he has that golden goose.” 

So the lad married the princess, in a grand wedding with the little old man sitting up in the front row in his own special seat.  And from that day forward they all lived in great peace and contentment and every day the sound of laughter rang out from every corner of the palace from sun up to sundown. 

So, do you think you would look for when choosing a prince or a princess to marry?  Do you think it is more important to be funny or to be kind?  This might make for a very good discussion with your friends and family. 

Don’t forget to keep sending us your drawings and messages and writing those reviews for us. 

Join me next time for Journey with Story. 

Recent Podcasts