PROLOGUE: You and I, my friend, we share a secret. We know that our bodies are like houses. And inside each house there lives a quiet person who can see all the magic in the world. It is that person inside who understands the laughter of seagulls, the joy of the setting sun and, of course, the stories told by the wind.
Once there was an apartment in a city where two eyes looked out a window and watched the setting sun.
The eyes knew the sunset like an old friend. They knew its colors, and its changing moods. Each sunset was an old friend wearing new clothes.
There were other friends in the sky. The eyes watched them with the warm feeling that old friends bring.
There were seagulls fluttering through the reds and oranges of the sky.
They rode the wind . . .
and fought the wind . . .
and let the wind tell them its tale.
The wind had a sad tale to tell. It told of a lonely ship lost at sea. The seagulls laughed at the story anyway. Seagulls will laugh at almost anything.
The eyes dropped from the sky to the darkening shadows on the ground, and rested on a tree. This tree never laughed. It was a happy tree but still it never laughed.
“It is not in my nature to laugh,” the tree once explained. That’s why the wind sang to the tree and saved its stories for those who knew how to laugh.
The eyes returned to the room. Somewhere in this room a babysitter was calling out to him.
“Bobby?” she called. “What are you looking at?”
Then he heard his brother’s voice.
“You know he can’t answer you,” his brother told the babysitter. “You know he can’t speak, or turn around.
“If you want him to answer you, you have to look into his eyes.”
The eyes tried to search out the voices, but could only turn far enough to reach the corner of the room. There was adventure in this corner. The eyes had seen it. But only in the late afternoon . . .
. . . when the shadows fell.
Then all the shapes that were hiding could come out. Bandits chasing little children, wild horses stampeding towards freedom, jungles filed with uncaged animals.
And when the shadows melted in the late afternoon darkness, the shapes would flee to the crowded sky.
So many shapes, all puffed into shifting clouds . . .
cats chasing dogs . . .
lambs searching for their mothers . . .
sailboats racing out to sea.
The eyes grew sad. They remembered the wind’s tale. They remembered the lonely sailboat lost at sea.
Once again, the eyes heard the babysitter speaking to his brother.
“Do you think Bobby would like something to drink?” the babysitter asked.
“No,” his brother answered. “I think he’s happy being left alone.”
“Alone?” the eyes wondered. “Who’s alone?”
The eyes looked to the night that was spreading like ink across the sky. The night was an old friend who often came to visit.
Sometimes the night hid its beauty in black clouds. Other times it wore stars, as if to light a party. But the night was best under a moon. It had so many moons to wear . . .
a moon to keep little boys from getting lost . . .
a moon to brighten up the branches of leafless trees . . .
a moon for nights when bad dreams shook the tears from your eyes.
But tonight there was no moon. The stars had asked to shine by themselves.
The eyes heard the babysitter getting up from the chair.
“Time for bed, Bobby,” she called to him.
“Just take things slow when you move him,” his brother told the babysitter. “Bobby likes to watch things as they go by.”
“How do you know that?” the babysitter asked.
“I look into his eyes and they tell me things,” his brother answered.
“Watch, you’ll see.”
The eyes watched as a familiar face came into view. It was a friendly face. A smiling face.
“Time for bed, Bobby,” his brother said.
The eyes stared into the face, into his brother’s welcoming eyes.
Somewhere, as if in another world, the eyes heard the babysitter whisper sad sounds to herself. “Poor boy,” the sounds seemed to say.
But his brother’s eyes said something different. They were not sad. They stared at him deeply and seemed to ask, “Tell me what the sunset was like, Bobby.”
Out in the night, the eyes could hear a seagull laughing. Laughing at the wind’s tale. Laughing to think of a sailboat lost at sea.
And the eyes wondered . . . maybe the wind’s tale wasn’t so sad after all.
But then again, seagulls will laugh at almost anything.
Proud to say “The Wind’s Tale” will be published soon by Eifrig Press, a publisher whose mission is to distribute empowering children’s books to underserved populations. Usually at no cost.