The Scarecrow

Now that the King and Queens of Everland are sleeping in peace, I'll tell you a tale of a Scarecrow.

It was a long long time ago, in the country of Neverland, (right that you guessed, Neverland was never there as Everland was always present) lived a farmer and his wife, in a small hut surrounded by lavishly colored flowers of name unknown, overlooking a vast paddy field, by the river Atreyi. Though our old lady (do I have to tell you that she is the farmer's wife?) loved the birds sitting in the trees very much, but the old man had a real tough time driving them off the field.

"Go away you thieves. Go and sit on the tree and eat the fruit that's for you. And keep your eyes of my paddy field", he would yell at the birds every now and then. But alas to his dismay the birds never quite understood the language he spoke.

So he thought of a way to scare of the birds without loosing his voice and hurting his wife. He collected a earthen pot, a pair of bamboo poles, a big bundle of straw and an old yellow shirt that his wife gave him when they were a young couple. Then in one shadowy afternoon he took some ropes from the store and set off for the field. There he set up a scarecrow.

A group of boys were passing by their time idling by the river. When the dusk was about to fall they saw the scarecrow and ran towards it.

"Well, well, the old man has done a splendid job!", said the boy wearing a pointy witch's hat.
"But it looks missing something!", another boy reported.
"Oh yes! it doesn't have a face!", discovered the leader of the boys.
"Then let's paint it a face!" The decision was reached and soon the scarecrow had two wide eyes, eyebrows, a nose and a smiling face drawn by a chalk.

"I think it would look much better with this hat on", so saying the boy put his pointy witch's hat on the scarecrow. The dusk had fallen by now and the boys hurried home. And by the nightfall, in the vast paddy field, stood alone the scarecrow with a pointy had and chalk eyes, stretching his bamboo arms, as if to embrace the moon shining above.


Watercolor on paper, 2001

Then he opened his chalk eyes. A little straw heart started beating under the dirty yellow shirt. He felt the light wind fall on his face. He looked at the vast empty field, the dark sky, the stars and the moon and sadness fell over his joyous face, for he couldn't move. And yet he had to keep smiling with chalk lips, even though there was a great melancholy within.

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