Bowser The Hound by Thornton W. Burgess
Chapter XIV. The Difference Between Being Inside and Outside
You'll find 'twill often come about That he who's in fain would be out. Bowser the Hound.
It certainly is queer what a difference there is between being inside and outside. Sometimes happiness is inside and sometimes it is outside. Sometimes the one who is inside wishes with all his might that he were outside, and sometimes the one who is outside would give anything in the world to be inside.
Just take the case of Reddy Fox. He had stolen inside of Farmer Brown's henyard, leaving the gate halfway open. He had set himself to work to open the little sliding door through which in the daytime the hens passed in and out of the henhouse. As he worked he had been filled with great contentment and joy. He knew that Bowser the Hound had disappeared. He felt sure that there was nothing to fear, and he fully expected to dine that night on chicken. Then along came a mischievous little Night Breeze and swung that gate shut.
At the click of the latch Reddy turned his head, and in a flash he saw what had happened. All in an instant everything had changed for Reddy Fox. Fear and despair took the place of contentment and happy anticipations. He was a prisoner inside that henyard.
Frantically Reddy rushed over to the gate. There wasn't even a crack through which he could thrust his sharp little nose. Then, beside himself with fear, he raced around that henyard, seeking a hole through which he might escape. There wasn't any hole. That fence had been built to keep out such people as Reddy Fox, and of course a fence that would keep Reddy out would also keep him in, if he happened to be caught inside as he now was. He couldn't dig down under it, because, you know, the ground was frozen hard and covered with snow and an icy crust. He was caught, and that was all there was to it.
Suddenly Reddy became aware of some one just outside the wire fence, looking in and grinning wickedly. It was Old Man Coyote. Between them was nothing but that wire, but, oh, what a difference! Reddy was inside and a prisoner. Old Man Coyote was outside and free.
"Good evening, Reddy," said Old Man Coyote. "I hope you'll enjoy your chicken dinner. When you are eating it, just think over this bit of advice: Never take a risk when you can get some one else to take it for you. I would like a chicken dinner myself, but as it is, I think I will enjoy a Mouse or two better. Pay my respects to Farmer Brown's boy when he comes in the morning."
With this, Old Man Coyote once more grinned that wicked grin of his and trotted away towards the Green Forest. Reddy watched him disappear and would have given anything in the world to have been outside the fence in his place instead of inside, where he then was.