Friday, January 05, 2007

The Very Tall Boy -- A Children's Story?

The very tall boy was having a very bad day. It started when his mom made him get out of beds before he wanted to. Then, after breakfast, his dad asked him if he was going to just sit around the house all day. And finally his sister told him to get lost.

He’d have liked to do that. But he couldn’t. Because the very tall boy was so very tall that no matter where he went, he could always see his house.

It was hard being a very tall boy.

He hadn’t always been a very tall boy. Once he was a very small boy. He’d been the smallest boy in town. Which meant he was always picked last for sports. And that he could barely see the 4th of July parade through town. And that kids made fun of him and called him names. “Shorty.” “PeeWee.” “Baby.”

So every night when he went to bed he wished the same wish. He wished he’d wake up in the morning as a very tall boy. One morning his wish came true.

He was sound asleep and dreaming. It wasn’t a good dream. He dreamed that his sister was pouring water on his feet. She kept pouring and pouring and pouring … And then he opened his eyes. He couldn’t believe what he saw. His feet were wet – because it was raining and his feet were sticking out the windows at the other end of the bedroom. His head was up against one wall and his shoulders were wedged between the other two walls.

“Help!” he hollered, blowing his bedroom ceiling off. Now he was getting wet all over. His mom and dad came running. His dad said, “Oh my” and fainted. His mother just stood there and cried. His sister couldn’t think of anything to say for once. And he began to find out that being a very tall boy wasn’t any better than being a very small boy.

He was still picked last for sports – because now he was too tall. And he could see the 4th of July parade but it looked like a parade of ants. And the kids still called him names – “King Kong.” “Cloudscaper.” “Skyboy.”

So on the day the very tall boy was having a very bad day, he decided to do what his sister wanted him to do. He’d get lost. Or at least he’d try. The very tall boy took very long steps and soon he was very far from home. He walked by two cities, over three rivers, and right into a forest. He turned around and looked back the way he walked. He could still see his house. He sighed. But then he found he could see other things, too. Things that normal sized people didn’t often see. He saw how the farmers’ fields were laid out in squares of corn and beans and hay. They looked like the quilt on his grandma’s bed. His heart started to smile just a little bit. He heard chirping and looked down. That’s when he saw a bird’s nest. The mommy bird was sitting on a limb feeding the baby birds inside. It was like when he was little and his mom had feed him. His smile started to spread from his heart. He looked around and saw a cloud floating by. He stuck his head inside it. It swirled softly all around him and smelled fresh and clean. He remembered how his dad used to give him a bath and wrap him in a clean towel. His smile started making its way to his mouth.

He looked around and saw the river winding away to the sea and the trees in the forest waving in the wind. It was peaceful and quiet where he stood. His smile went to his eyes. So he decided to not be lost. He went home. And told his mom and dad and sister about the neat things he had seen. His smile was so big that it wrapped around his mom and dad. And his sister, too.

That night, when he went to beds, he didn’t wish to be a very small boy, a very normal sized boy, or a very tall boy. He just fell asleep happy to be who he was.

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