Sunday, 28 September 2014

An old fashioned moral tale

Evil squeezed a few drops of venom onto the assembled company and then lay back with his hands behind his head and a contented smile on his face.It was one of his favourite situations. People sitting round a table and trying to pretend they were alright. He sighed with satisfaction. All his best friends were there, Envy and Jealousy, Pride and Vanity, Resentment and Bitterness, Hate and Indifference.Greed hadn't come this evening. He'd gone to a  land dispute meeting with Anger and Sloth. .Evil squeezed a few more drops over Hate. He'd had a bit of trouble with him lately. He'd been getting close to that idiot Passion and Evil knew that when that happened his feared enemy, Love, was never far away. He looked fondly at Pride and Vanity. They were looking so young these days with all the plastic surgery and the boom in the obsession for beauty. Envy was giving them a hand, He looked proudly at Indifference, who was going from strength to strength and sometimes overtaking Hate. Evil was amazed by the renewed power of Indifference.
 A gust of warmth and sweet air caused Evil to sit up abruptly. He relaxed immediately when he saw it was only Compassion trying to pull up a chair next to Bitterness. He wasn't afraid of Compassion, Pride always managed to sort him out. He listened idly to the conversation. Resentment was telling Jealousy all about his miserable childhood. Compassion tried to join in but then Bitterness caught his attention. Evil always enjoyed listening to conversations about miserable childhoods, cruel parents and jealous siblings. He often felt his finest work was done there. All those people dragging their childhood grievances through their lives like a ball and chain. He also got great satisfaction from all the marriage break ups around. Love went to all that hard work to get a couple together and they'd go off down the aisle looking at each other in a soppy way and making ridiculous promises. Evil only had to wait until Love was busy doing something else and then let Jealousy sidle in .He would then open the door for Bitterness and Resentment, before long they were joined by Hate who took over completely. Evil nearly lost his balance as Kindness came in and moved round the table trying to get some attention. Evil was pleased to see that no- one was taking any notice of her. Weak ineffectual creature with all her silly ways, offering lifts and dropping coins in boxes, making cakes and listening to long boring complaints and being nice. Hope and Faith came in together as always. They were useless too. All it needed was a little earthquake or a flood and off they'd scuttle. Evil looked at his friends with pride, pleased with himself. Then there was a blinding flash that threw him right off balance. He was dazzled by the brilliance and the light that sparkled around him. He glimpsed a white cloak covered in thousands of bright diamonds, a rich velvet trim and a softness that even tempted him to wrap himself in their folds. He hadn't been expecting this. It was his arch enemy Love. She started to envelop the creatures one by one, soothing their brows, holding their hands. There was a burst of nervous laughter from Envy. Hate was looking at her in awe and what looked suspiciously like adoration. Evil desperately tried to sprinkle more drops of venom but it was no use. There was nothing left. Bitterness and Resentment rushed away together looking ashamed and rather ridiculous. Pride and Vanity looked old and tired. The others followed and Evil faded away. Love looked at Kindness and Compassion, Hope and Faith.   'I'm sorry I took so long,I've been very busy this evening. Thank  you for holding on.'
Compassion looked down, shame-faced,' I'm  no good on my own. I can't do anything without you.'
Love put his arm round him 'No- one can. We all need each other. '


I have always liked the following verse by Hilaire Belloc, (1870-1953). He was an Anglo- French writer and lived in Britain. My mum liked this verse so much she had it embroidered and put in a frame to hang beside her bed. It inspired me to write this rather old-fashioned 'moral' tale.

Of courtesy it is much less
Than courage of heart or holiness
Yet in my walks it seems to me
That the grace of God is in courtesy.

I hope you like it and it inspires you today.


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