Study Guide

The Complete Tales of Winnie-the-Pooh The House at Pooh Corner: Chapter 5

By A. A. Milne

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The House at Pooh Corner: Chapter 5

In Which Rabbit Has a Busy Day, and We Learn What Christopher Robin Does in the Mornings

  • For Rabbit, it's just one of those days.
  • One of those days when you feel important, when you feel like somebody.
  • Somebody who could organize or theorize or notarize something.
  • It was one of those days when you tell everyone how busy you are, when really you're busy with telling people how busy you are.
  • He contemplates where to go first, and decides on Christopher Robin's. CR (the character) could ask him to do something and he'd do it, dependably.
  • Onward!
  • On his way, he comes across many of his friends and relations (other animals in the wood such as hedgehogs and insects).
  • There's a mad rush of some kind, more beetles than usual and they're clamoring to get to the top of a tree.
  • Rabbit assumes they're trying to see something important, so he hurries on to CR's to be a part of it.
  • He gets to CR's house, which in this story is a tree just like Piglet's.
  • Too bad CR isn't there. All that's left is a note saying "BACKSON" and "BISY," which means "back soon" and "busy" to those of us with too little imagination.
  • Rabbit takes on the very important job of telling the others that CR is out, busy, but will be back soon.
  • Rabbit brings the notice to Owl.
  • He takes a look at the note, pretends to understand it (he doesn't) and says some big words to make himself look smart (he doesn't).
  • A bit lost in the "conversation," Rabbit reveals that he had gone to visit CR yesterday too. And there was a very similar note. CR has been going somewhere in the mornings (DUN dun dun).
  • Through this explanation Owl finally gathers what Rabbit is talking about, since he wasn't able to understand the note itself. Blow to ego averted.
  • Sort of.
  • Owl concludes that CR is out with someone named Backson.
  • But Owl can't help any further, so Rabbit goes off in search of Pooh, who might know what a backson is.
  • Shortly, he comes across Pooh singing a song.
  • Pooh doesn't know about backsons either. But he knows a little bit about CR in the mornings, he thinks.
  • He remembers breakfast, a delicious breakfast with honey in a picnic basket and— but no, Christopher Robin wasn't there. Oh well, he doesn't know what CR has been up to.
  • So Rabbit goes to see Eeyore, but runs into Piglet too.
  • Some back-story: Piglet had been out gathering violets to give to Eeyore, since Eeyore had probably never received violets from anyone before.
  • Sweet sweet Piglet.
  • Piglet gets to Eeyore's and sees him working on something. There are three sticks on the ground, in the shape of an A, only Piglet doesn't see it as an A, he sees it as a trap or something.
  • But Eeyore sets him straight. He calls it an A. He knows it's an A, because Christopher Robin told him so.
  • Eeyore gets up on a soapbox and declares the importance of A, which stands for learning and education. It means something to make him stand out from the "uneducated" animals in the forest.
  • This is when Rabbit comes in. He asks if Eeyore knows what CR does in the mornings.
  • Miraculously, Eeyore knows!
  • CR learns in the morning. He becomes educated.
  • Eeyore is so high on his high horse that he doesn't notice that Rabbit knows exactly what he has made with three sticks: an A.
  • Piglet bursts his bubble and tells him how clever Rabbit is.
  • And that pretty much ruins education for Eeyore, who really only wanted it to make him unique.
  • CR on the other hand, keeps on learning. In fact, the next morning, he leaves a similar note on his door, only this time it says "BACK SOON."

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