The Child And The Tree (Issue 4)

“Why are you weeping, Oak; you’re not a willow?”
“I’m not the tree I used to be. I used to give shade for the likes of you, so you could get respite from the over-zealous noonday sun. Since I’ve acquired dollar bills as leaves, I’m only shady to myself.”
“People are very happy to see you.”
“Yes, but only until they’ve stripped me of the greenbacks; no one lingers anymore. They’ve never believed in such a phenomenon yet they’re happy to take advantage of it.”
“But I liked you then, ever since I first waddled up to your beautiful bole.”
“And now?”
“Yes, I still want to be here most of all but I don’t like those who’ll not let you be.”
“At least if you believe in me regardless of the money, then at least it is reason to be happy.”
“How did you get the money?”
“Someone buried a big chest under my trunk, it infected my roots. If you dig deep just to my left, you might find it.”
“I don’t want the money, I’ve no use for it…I wonder..if I dig it up and throw it away?”
Next day the child returned to find the oak as proud and full-leaved as he had been. Luckily the child was spared the terrible scenes of mayhem that saw the
oak narrowly saved from the angry lynch-mob that were determined to hang the tree from one of its branches., after their disappointment at finding no
money on the tree.
“Hello Oak, you look well.”
“Thank you, child, you’ve given me back my identity and dignity. I’m not lonely now. Just a while ago a family laid a picnic beneath my branches and
laughed and played. How can I thank you.”
“Just be your grand self and give us shade and oxygen. I must go, I need to go to the bank-”
“What!”
“No, silly, the grassy bank; she’s disinclined to be, she’s a little flat. I want to help her become once more a grassy bank whereupon we can sit and lie in
the friendlier morning sun, when it is not so hot..”
“Oh, I see, that’s a relief. Off you go. See you again, child, and thank you so much.”

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