It’s an old phrase. Been around for decades. Applies to a small story about me also.
From my Twitter/X:
There is another message I got. While in the cradle as a “child” people brought money and all kinds of gifts… went to others. Then I got scared, jumped out of the crib… people had planned to mrdr me, so I offered to be the drummer boy. They gave me drums and a false smile, injured me. I said, okay… I’ll stay further away. Only thing, it wasn’t a message… it happened. To this day I am not certain what I ran from, or gave up. It may have just been death itself.
I didn’t plan to write about myself, however there are contacts who didn’t know things so much they did the wrongs things with me even recently.
(back soon with the story, need more time to think about it. Hope the title alone can solve some pending questions.)
“My ink well is dry, therefore I cannot write more.” – the writer
“I’ve been ill for a very long time, I don’t know what well means.” – the patient
“I have not done something fulfilling in a long time.” – the worker
“I wish you well, and good bye.” – the fraud
The year 1200 AD… somewhere in Europe.
There is a small town with two water wells that draw from different sources. Each well is located a separate ends of the town. For more than one generation the people of the town got their water from either. There were no fights. Even during a drought, people talked and planned to make best use of the waters available.
One day, a young man was angry. He wanted a way to get the attention of everyone in town so he tainted one well and gathered like-minded friends to guard the remaining well.
His first attempt at showing his anger was to watch some people become very ill from the well he did not guard.
The next attempt at “letting others feel his anger” was to block people from using “his well”. Most were scared enough to just not ask for water and rationed what they had, hoping the boys would calm down.
A small boy is encouraged to talk to the boys at the well and he seeks them out. Once in front of them he asks, “Why are you protecting the remaining well yet not sharing its waters?”
The older boys complain amongst each other. It has been many days they’ve lived around the well to “protect it” and they’ve had to find their own food and slept under tree limbs and the sky, no longer protected themselves. The small boy notices they are tired and angrier than he remembers ever seeing people. And they have weapons he is not used to seeing. They look newly made, and not by the blacksmith. Made themselves?
A lonely person picks up a rotary dial phone and calls a random number. A voice on the other end talks to them for an hour. They never tell each other their real names and just…talk.
Back then the system wasn’t too good. There were pops and crackles, fuzzy sounding voices between clear times. Still they talked about things. Why the world doesn’t look right, why their lives are not what they expected. Dreams, hopes, loves and hates.
They laughed, and almost cried too. Out of fear of “ruining it” they choose to never speak again. Thank each other and hang up.
Those were better days. People talked to each other. Shared ideas without fear, without passing judgement. People knew how to be polite, considerate, authentic… even tolerant.
This takes places in the 1970s, USA. Back then, we had rotary telephones in homes and workplaces. They were called a “tele – phone” because unlike a telegraph… it was SOUND.
Yeah so there was this young dude or dudette… friends, family, even strangers came to them asking for money. This person never really asked if they had more than them or not. But decided: “Well, how should I solve this problem?”
They used their good mind and said, “Hey look… I have an idea to help us all make money!”
The group asking for money: “Great! What is it?”
The dude or dudette: “Let’s grow a big tree of fruit! We can eat some and sell some. We’ll always have some food to eat, share and make some money off of.”
Group: “Great! Don’t move.” Then they clobber the dude or dudette… take them to another town, and abandon them there.
Back at the original town, they grow a big tree and over the years it helped all kinds of people, locals and visitors. People even posed by it for photos every so often. They sold tshirts, had a fruit stand for a while, then they created a farmers market and the community thrived.. until there was no more water. They had planted orchards of different trees and then… also… the demand dropped as supply became too great. They started throwing out fruits almost daily.
One day someone says, “Hey, what about the dude or dudette? Shouldn’t we bring them back and give them some fruit?”
Group: “No, just throw away the surplus.”
“We clobbered Sarah.” – the ‘wind’ “We are dead meat.” – the ‘wind’
(working title) I’m writing this story live. If I don’t snoopers may try to sell it before I publish it. Stand by… (copied from Linkedin after I finished as is for now)
After working hard for years, an old man is retired and alone. He knows he is near his end, or he thinks so. Gives away his expensive things to friends and family and has his little money to live on and enjoy his final days in peace.
He has just enough to get by, but things are getting more expensive. He doesn’t want to burden people he cared about in life. Just wants to fade away.
After losing his small apartment home and walking out, leaving everything there he takes to the streets. He has a terminal illness and knows his life is closing down.
One day he notices the young birds visiting him. Older ones watching them and him. Laying on his cardboard he gets up and goes to a store and with his last cash buys bird seed. He sits at the park and gives and gives… it last for days and he makes lots of friends with the birds and he lives in that nice park for a while with them.
The day comes and he is out. He sits and watches some birds come to visit, give him looks, peck around and leave again. Some come and fight each other at his feet and next to him on the bench.
Sadly he gets up, and slowly walks away. Birds chase after him.. scurrying at his feet… landing on his shoulders… on his head… flying by… some talking… some yelling… he just keeps walking slowly… no where to really go. His breathing isn’t well…
…his head is getting foggy.. he is not sure if he is walking or not. He feels very tired… and slowly loses consciousness. The birds land on his body, now just fallen on the path. He hears them, it sounds like music and confusion… they peck at his hair, his face, his jacket, his shoes, and stand and fight on him. Doesn’t matter their color, or size, or origin. Just birds.
Are you a bird? Do beautiful feathers stop you from pecking at people? Are you all in gray? Do you feel, special?
Joggers… come up quick and birds fly off… some fly and fly and fly… others hop out of the way still watching and looking for bird seed, which.. some may have dropped.
What does this story mean to you? What human would you be in this story if you wrote yourself in? Are you proud of the birds? Would you want to be one?
What are the joggers thinking of as they see this dead old man on a path? Take his wallet? Chase the birds away? Run off and pretend they didn’t see him?
There are many meanings in this story. Some people feel old and out of bird seed, even not near their own natural death. They feel like they already gave up a lot already.
If the old man got up, and walked back to an expensive apartment with all kinds of marble and gold. Had he still spent “all his seeds” for “the birds”? What if he had only bought ONE BAG in life and spent it all. Are the birds still “owed”? Is he responsible if the birds called more to his neighborhood?