"Once more he stept into the street
And to his lips again
Laid his long pipe of smooth straight cane;
And ere he blew three notes (such sweet
Soft notes as yet musician's cunning
Never gave the enraptured air)
There was a rustling that seemed like a bustling
Of merry crowds justling at pitching and hustling,
Small feet were pattering, wooden shoes clattering,
Little hands clapping, and little tongues chattering,
And, like fowls in a farm-yard when barley is scattering,
Out came the children running.
All the little boys and girls,
With rosy cheeks and flaxen curls,
And sparkling eyes and teeth like pearls,
Tripping and skipping, ran merrily after
The wonderful music with shouting and laughter."
Another fantastical story based on an historical event. In the year 1284 the townspeople of Hameln, Germany, tragically lost all of their children under mysterious circumstances. The first reference to this event is in the town records of 1384 which states “It is 100 years since our children left”. The story has been expanded upon over the centuries to include the plague of rats and the grim Piper, and reached what is perhaps its definitive form in 1842 when Robert Browning wrote this poem.
More info on the history of this tale: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pied_Piper_of_Hamelin#History