Brendan's Island  

Brian's Attic

The Reading Shelf

Brendan's Island home pagePlaces to go on Brendan's Island
I Love It Here! main page
A Walk on the Catholic Side
Brian's Attic: The Reading Shelf
Americana
9/11/2002, 2005
An American Family
Ich Bin Ein Amerikaner
Mustard and Ketchup
Ronald Reagan
Observations
Arthur's Home
Day of the Living Driver
Jonah, the Movie
Once it Was BelievedFiction
The Dream
The Village, the Fence, and the Sign
Wilbert and Grunt

Attack of the Amateur Photo Album
Brendan: A Monk, A Boat and A Legend
Brendan's Island Guest Book
Brendan's Island Visitor Information Center

 

The Village, the Fence and the Sign

Brian H. Gill

Once upon a time there was a village. South of the houses was the top of a very tall cliff. North of the houses were high, grassy hills.

It was a beautiful village. The people there were happy and safe, as long as they did not go near the cliff.

There was a sign near the cliff, and a fence. The sign said:

DANGER!

CLIFF!

DO NOT GO NEAR THE EDGE,

OR YOU MAY FALL OFF!

The fence was between the sign and the houses. The sign and the fence had been put up long ago, to keep people from falling off the cliff. Because no one wanted to fall off the cliff, no one built houses near the fence.

One day, Tom, Sharon, Bert and Courtney were playing in the open space between the houses and the fence. As they ran, Tom (who wasn't looking were he was going) ran into the fence.

Tom's head hurt, and so all four went to the village for help. Sam, who lived in the house nearest the hills, put a cloth on Tom's head, and gave him cool water. Soon Tom's head was better.

Many people in the village were worried because Tom ran into the fence, and hurt his head. Everyone knows that it's not good to hurt your head.

Sharon said, "The fence is to blame!" Tom said, "Yes! if the fence were not there, I would not have hurt my head!"

"The fence kept you away from the cliff," said Sam. But only a few people listened to Sam.

Many people in the village thought that Tom was wise. Nobody in the village had fallen off the cliff, but many had run into the fence.

They said, "If the fence had not been there, Tom could not have bumped his head on the fence."

 

Soon almost everyone in the village agreed. They said, "The fence is to blame!" Then they tore down the fence.

Now everyone in the village could see the cliff. They could also see the sign in front of the cliff.

Bert thought the cliff was beautiful. He said "Look how far you can see, from the edge of the cliff!" Bert could see even farther from the hills behind the village, but the cliff was closer.

Courtney was afraid when she thought about the cliff. She was afraid when she saw the cliff. She was even more afraid when she saw the sign near the cliff.

The sign looked bigger than it had when it was behind the fence.

Courtney decided she didn't like the sign. She said, "The sign keeps me from having fun!"

Bert said, "The sign is to blame!" Courtney said, "Yes! if the sign were not there, I would not be afraid, and Bert could have fun!"

"The sign reminds us to stay away from the cliff," said Sam. But only a few people listened to Sam.

Bert and Courtney told Sam to keep quiet. "When you talk about the sign, you make people feel bad," they said.

Many people from the village thought that Bert and Courtney were wise. They said "If the sign was not there, nobody would be afraid, and everyone could have fun."

Soon almost everyone in the village agreed. They said, "The sign makes us afraid! The sign keeps us from having fun!" Then they tore down the sign.

Bert said, "This feels good! Now there is no sign to make us afraid, or to keep us from having fun." Almost everyone in the village agreed.

One day, Tom, Sharon, Bert and Courtney were playing in the open space between the houses and the cliff. As they ran, Tom (who wasn't looking where he was going) ran near the edge of the cliff.

He lost his balance, and fell off. Nobody ever saw Tom again.

Sharon, Bert and Courtney were very sad. They all said, "The cliff is to blame!"

Soon almost everyone in the village agreed. They said, "If the cliff was not there, people would not fall off!" Then they tried to tear down the cliff.

They dug, and hammered, and pulled at the edge of the cliff. Soon a huge piece of rock, soil, and grass tore away from the edge of the cliff.

Sharon had been standing on that piece of grass. Now the cliff had a new edge, and Sharon was gone. The new edge of the cliff was closer to the village.

Sam ran up. "Stop!" he shouted. "You are bringing the cliff closer to your houses!"

Bert and Courtney shouted, "The cliff is to blame!" Almost everyone in the village agreed. Then they tore another piece off the edge of the cliff.

This time Bert fell off the edge.

Courtney and everyone else in the village were very sad. They were very mad, too. They said, "The cliff is to blame!"

They the tore another piece off the edge of the cliff. The edge of the cliff was next to Courtney's house now. Courtney kicked at a piece of dirt near the edge of the cliff. She lost her balance and fell off the cliff.

Now almost everyone in the village was very, very mad. They missed Courtney, and Bert, and Sharon, and Tom. "The cliff is to blame!" they shouted.

Then they tore another piece off the edge of the cliff. A huge piece of cliff fell off. Courtney's house fell off, too.

Sam tried to stop his neighbors, but he couldn't. Most of the people in the village were too mad to listen.

Sam's neighbor's tore at the cliff. Every so often, one of them fell off. Each time this happened, the rest got even more mad. They tore at the cliff even harder.

More people and houses fell off the cliff.

Soon the only house left was Sam's. The cliff had been torn back to the edge of the hills.

Sam's house rocked back and forth on the edge of the cliff. Then it fell off.

All the houses in the village were gone.

Most of the people in the village were gone.

Sam walked away. A few of his neighbors went with him. They had not been near the cliff.

They built another village. This village was high up in the hills. It was a beautiful village. South of the new village, where the old village had been, was the top of a very tall cliff.

There was a fence near the cliff. A sign was on the fence. The sign said:

DANGER!

CLIFF!

DO NOT GO NEAR THE EDGE,

OR YOU MAY FALL OFF!

 

copyright Brian H. Gill 1996

Back to Brian's Attic main page


Brendan's Island Guest BookWhile you're here, please take a look at Brendan's Island's guest book. Leave a comment, if you like.   E-mail Brendan's Island WebmasterYou can send me a message on the contact page.
Brian H. Gill, webmaster

Brian's Attic: The Reading Shelf

 
Americana Observations Fiction
9/11/2002, 2005 Arthur's Home
by Naomi Gill
The Dream
An American Family Day of the
Living Driver
 
Ich Bin Ein Amerikaner Jonah Fan Page The Village, the Fence and the Sign
Mustard
and Ketchup
   
Ronald Wilson Reagan Once it Was Believed /
Now We Know
Wilbert and Grunt

Brendan's Island home page
I Love It Here! (life in a small town) | A Walk on the Catholic Side
Brian's Attic | Attack of the Amateur Photo Album
Brendan: A Monk, A Boat And a Legend
Brendan's Island Guest Book | Visitor Information Center


 

Hit Counter

 

This page last updated: December 19, 2010