The Boy with No Story to Tell

by Mike

This story is not original with me, I have heard it spoken and wish to have it in my collection.     

In an Irish village before the age of television it was custom for the people to gather in the pub  where they entertained one another with poetry, song and story.  In an evening the lights of the pub  shined out into the darkened street. If someone should pass by, they would hear the music, the  rhythmic cadence of verse or the voice of a individual holding the villagers captive with a tale that  could be an adventure, a bit of romance or a part of history, possibly of Ireland or possibly of the  village itself.

 Whole families would be there, children and grown-ups. The young would be expected to do their share of the entertainment.  Now there was one boy who never had a story to tell.  He became  known as the boy with no story and when he walked through the village people would say, “There  goes the boy with no story to tell”.  Or they would look at him and say,  “Fine weather we’re a havin’,  boy with no story to tell.”

 It goes without saying, that the youngster was not happy with his problem.  For some reason he  could find no adventure to share, no history that had not been told and he was too young to really   understand romance.  He made a decision to not attend the gathering at the pub and told his family and  classmates in school.  Instead, he would leave the village and never return.

 On the night of the gathering he headed out with the thought he would go wherever the boreen  would take him.  He walked in the moonlight until the roof tops of his village could no longer be seen  and still further past fields and the dark shadows of the woods where they say the leprechauns live. 

 Rounding a bend in the narrow path, he came upon an ancient stone wall that broke into an opening  with a fire lit cottage and a man standing in the doorway.  Seeing the boy, the man called out  offering a spot of tea and soda bread.

 The boy, cold and hungry, accepted the offer and stepped inside when the man opened the door.  Another man, old like his host, was sitting near the fire, and he smiled as he held out the cup and the                                                

 bread and gestured to a chair next to the burning turf.  The boy thanked him and tended to the warm  liquid and the buttered pastry.  He had little to say because he was unable to tell a story and when he   was finished one of the men took his cup and plate while the other grabbed and held him tightly. 

 The boy struggled while they carried him outside to the field where there was a long, rectangular hole.   The men put the youngster in the grave then stopped to discuss where they had placed the shovel. 

 While they were talking, the boy jumped out of the hole and ran to the boreen where at great  speed he passed the stone wall, the forest of the leprechauns, the open fields and finally, the moonlit  roofs of his village.  Running through the night, he didn’t stop until he reached the door of the pub.

 Pushing the door open, he stumbled into the room.  The villagers turned and looked at the youngster   and together they called out, “It’s the boy with a story to tell”.

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