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The Cow That Could Swim

by Tony Stewart

(junior version)

Junior Version

PLEASE NOTE:   The text is the first six pages of the junior version of The Cow That Could Swim


   The book starts with page 1 which is the inside cover.   When that page is turned over there will be two open pages. 


   The left hand pages are the even numbered pages where the text is printed. 


   The right handed pages are the odd numbered pages which is blank.  This is where the artist will draw images relating to the opposite page.   


NOTE:  Regardless of how long each PAGE looks here, the entire text will fit inside the PAGE it represents.  Remember. the book is produced in LANDSCAPE not PORTRAIT as it is shown here.



The Cow That Could Swim

(and other wonderful things that you wouldn’t expect of a cow)

By Tony Stewart



Page 2 (text)



“Harold,” Annie Jones, the farmer’s wife called out to her husband.   I don’t like the look of all this rain.  It’s been coming down for hours.”


   “Ah, she’ll be right.” He replied with a grin.  Farmer Jones never worried much, and he certainly didn’t worry about a bit of rain.  “It’ll make the grass grow good and green for Lucy.”

   “It’s Lucy that I’m worried about,”   Annie said with a sad voice,  “If this rain keeps up for much longer she’ll find herself swimming in it.”

   Farmer Jones looked at his wife, scratched his head and rolled his eyes, and then he began to laugh so hard he fell off his chair and started to roll on the floor.  “Cows can’t swim,”  he said through a mouthful of delirious laughter,  “She’d need a giant pair of water wings.”   And the thought of Lucy the cow in giant water wings sent him off in another gale of laughter.

   Well,” Annie responded reproachfully, “I’m going to be worried until it stops.   And she had every right to be worried … because it rained all night long.


                                                                                                   Page 3  (illustration)



Page 4 (text)



    Lucy, who had fallen asleep listening to her favourite band, ‘The Hot-House Heifers’, on her i-Pod, awoke just after dawn as something hit her on the rump.  “Goodness gracious,” she said in fright, “Whatever was that?  It was far too heavy for a fly or a bug.”

   Half asleep, she slowly opened her eyes to see what it was … and as she did so, her eyes threatened to pop out of her head.

Lucy was no longer lying on her favourite piece of grass at the farm, she was in the middle of the biggest pool of water she had ever seen … “Oh, I’m in a swimming pool, how nice.”  Lucy said with a smile, and, not realizing that she was in an upright position and her head had been resting on a log that had kept her upright, she rolled over to go back to sleep, but as soon as she put her head on the pillow -  her head went under the water.  Lucy panicked and quickly raised her head upwards and it was then she realized she was not in a pool, but in the middle of a river and heading towards the open sea.


                                                                                                      Page 5 (illustration)



      Page 6 (text)


      Lucy had often seen the video of the Brisbane River Farmer Jones had recorded from the bow of a City Cat.   Annie Jones, on most days, came out to join Lucy for a cup of tea and some cake.   She usually did this in the afternoons just before she began to make the evening meal.   And she often brought the portable D.V.D. player with her and hooked it into Lucy’s i-pad so they could watch the video together.   Annie would describe all the points of interest to Lucy as they appeared on the screen.   Lucy, although she had never complained to Annie, had seen the movie so many times it had left a permanent memory in her brain.  Now, as she looked towards the shoreline, Lucy knew exactly where she was, but was she surprised at how far she had travelled.   But Lucy was not surprised that she had slept through it all because her leather skin would have kept her warm and she wouldn’t have felt the rain, or the cold water, and of course the log that had somehow got caught under her chin kept her upright and safe, but she was so far down the river …  Something made Lucy turn around and look behind her and at that moment she got the second fright of her life that day … when she relised a huge gum tree was bearing down on her and was about to run over her.


                                                                                                      Page 7 (Illustration)


       Page 8 (text)


   “Uh, oh,” Lucy exclaimed, “I had better get out of here before it pulls me under.”    As quickly as she could get her feet moving Lucy began to swim away from the tree as fast as she could … much to the amazement of the teenage boy who couldn’t believe his eyes.   “Look, Charlie” he yelled, “there’s a cow in the river … and she’s swimming.” 

   And Lucy was swimming.  Of course cows can swim, despite what Farmer Jones may think, but Lucy is a real swimmer who taught herself a new way of swimming.   Usually cows do a dog paddle like thing under the water, but not our Lucy.   She had seen the swimmers during the Olympics and she thought that she could become the new Libby Trickett, one of Australia’s best swimmers.   She taught herself to do the Australian Crawl, that’s where the swimmer stretches their arms out in front of them and kick with their feet, only Lucy uses her front legs, but kicks with her back legs like the human swimmers do.  And Lucy has something else up her sleeves.  She has a tail and she swings it round and round while she is swimming and it becomes a cross between a propeller and a rudder which she uses to guide herself wherever she wants to go.  And she had spent every spare moment of the last summer to practise in the creek pretending she was participating in the Olympics.


                                                                                                  Page 9 (Illustration)


 Page 10 (Text)


   For a moment the teenage boy was frozen to the spot.  He could not believe what he was watching as Lucy increased her speed in a desperate attempt to avoid being run over by the huge tree that was coming her way.

   “Oh, my god,” the boy whispered, ‘that tree is getting close, but I am sure that she will make it.”

   The boy and his mate watched in fascination at Lucy’s attempts to get clear of danger, but they felt certain that she would make it

   In fact the boy was so certain that Lucy would survive he pulled out his phone, snapped a picture of Lucy and tweeted it to his friends.  By the time Lucy would reach the bridge there would be nearly a thousand people lining the banks and all waiting, phones and cameras at the ready, to see a swimming cow.

   But if the teenage boy had waited one more minute, before rushing off to join the crowd near the bridge, then he would have seen Lucy do something that was totally unexpected … and dangerous.


                                                                                                    Page 11 (Illustration)


  Page 12 (Text


    At exactly the same minute that the teenage boy began running towards the bridge, Lucy made a quick decision.  She felt certain that she would not be able to avoid the tree so she began to swim downwards in order to get under the tree.  Faster and faster she swam down, not daring to look up to see the progress of the tree.   Down, down, down she went.   Faster, faster, faster, then she felt something touch her back and it gave her such a fright she almost screamed.

  Lucy had no choice but to look behind her as she continued to swim down towards the bottom of the muddy river and the relief at what she saw brought a smile to her face.  It was not the tree, but a large mullet that was swimming by that had bumped into her.  And what was even better was the fact that she had escaped the tree.

   But now Lucy had to make a new decision.   How long should she stay under water?   She thought she could hold her breath for around two more minutes while the tree had completely passed over, but she was not certain ... and she wasn't wearing her watch.  She waited for as long as she could, but eventually she knew she had to go up … and fast, and hope the tree had completely passed.   But as she almost reached the surface while travelling at top speed, Lucy ran into a huge bunch of leaves ... and she was scared.   She didn't think she was going to make it in time.


   Well that is as far as we can go at the moment.   No sense spoiling the surprise ending is there.



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