A Little Boy Named Smith (a very short story)

Walking along the dusken road near dawn, my friend Smith was almost to the point where he could howl. As he sat meditating near the bank of the river, he wished only but to bring himself to right himself and stand up and do so.

The funny thing about Smith was that he knew exactly what he had to do and when he had to do it, but whenever he really really wanted to do that special thing, he just couldn’t seem to. Howling, especially. It was difficult for him to howl without…well, you know. And if you don’t, it’s the moon. Mystery be saved for those kinds of stories. This story is about a boy named Smith.

As Smith sat there beside the river, he for some reason was staring into the reflection of the sky in the water, and was feeling quite alarmed that the clouds were so covering. He wanted to howl. But without the sight of the moon he knew was there, he simply couldn’t do it. “My my,” thought Smith. “This cloud cover is something else. “My my,” he thought again. “My my.”

Just at that moment, the clouds parted, and he noticed the reflection of the moon in the river and he leapt to his feet. His muscles tensed and he threw himself upward like smoke from a flame; his insides drifting with the magnets of the Earth’s poles. “AwwwwwwwOOOOOOOOO!!!!!” said Smith. It didn’t seem right. He needed the moon itself and not its reflection. So he looked upward and saw it in its glory- its surface catching the rays of the Sun in such a way that the whole of the moon was apparent. And to him, such a side of it! The side with the light…

Smith stopped for a moment, internally prepared to howl at the sight of the actual moon. But something in his mind said to wait. So he waited. He closed his eyes and three words came to his thoughts. They were: “Oh heaven and”. He wasn’t sure what they meant, but he was sure that he didn’t hear them, that they were but appeared into his thoughts as if guided there.

He sat down to contemplate. Why couldn’t he howl? He really really wanted to. He felt almost as if he needed to. But there was the feeling that lives inside each man and woman alike- that doing anything out loud would be almost to ruin it, in a way. And yet, at the same time, like walking into the reeds with a hacksaw that has dulled and rusted, almost too good for chopping reeds. Sometimes they need to be trimmed to keep the pond healthy, true…and I mean literally reeds and ponds. Metaphor be saved for that type of story. This story is about a boy named Smith and the moon.

“Oh heaven and” was a pleasant thought to Smith. It made him calm in that moment. Even though all he felt like he should do was howl at the moon. Maybe it was in doing so at its reflection in the river that made him so partially satisfied. I’m not sure. I’m not Smith. But I can say that, to Smith, the moon’s reflection in the water was an odd idea. Yet even how uneven the partiality of its own persistence seemed to him, he was still quite satisfied with howling at all.

Odd as that may seem to day-timers like myself. And myself? My name is Shayla. And I know Smith well enough to say three words to end this story. You ready? Three words. And the three words are, “Okie doke blokes.”

Yes indeedy. Quite.

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