An appealing little whimsy that pushes just a mite too hard. On a drifty, dreamy night that materializes naturally under Martha Alexander's delicate touch, the small narrator, Maggie, and her friendly lug of a dog, Ruff, spy a big yellow moon and go out to ""catch it."" But even from the apple tree, or with Maggie's lasso, it's out of reach. Then, heading home, Maggie sees the moon ""in the lake."" A net, fetched by Ruff, breaks it ""all to pieces."" It disappears--behind a cloud, we see. ""Moon, please come back. I won't take you home. I'll throw you right back in the sky. I promise!"" In the darkness, Maggie and Ruff start home; the moon emerges; and instead of a simple welcome, Maggie gabbles on for three pages--concluding, finally, ""You belong in the sky right where you are."" What starts as an elusive fancy winds up, alas, as a stock lesson. But it's likely to elicit some gentle, appreciative smiles en route.