Karl Wiener

The bridge

 

  

          Long, long ago the place where these days a gentle breeze passes over green and fertile fields was covered by a dark and eerie forest that seemed endless. The forest was so huge, that no one had ever been known to venture to the far side. Deep in the forest there were hidden lakes and small ponds, many types of animals and thousands of very old oak-trees. In the middle of the forest there was a large clearing, through which ran a deep ravine that seemed insurmountable. On either side of the forest there lived people, who worked diligent and hard trying their very best to earn a living. They were not blessed with riches and would have dearly liked to make their way deep into the dense undergrowth in search of the berries and mushrooms that they knew grow there. But they rarely ventured very far as they were afraid they might lose their way.  As a result the people living on either side of this forest seldom came into contact, and so they didn’t really get to know each other. But whenever they managed to trek as far as the ravine and caught sight of each other, the fear of danger that always comes from the unknown made them argued and threaten across the ravine.

          One day a small girl wandered of by herself. She ended up deep in the forest and lost her way. In her search for a way back home she became more and more disorientated. The further she went she found she had  to overcome more obstacles in order to made even the slowest of progress. Finally she reached at the deep ravine and didn’t know what to do. On no account did she want to go back into the dark forest and there was no way to go forward without falling down into the depths below. So she sat down and wept with exhaustion. She felt very sad and alone.

          At the same moment a small boy also happened to find himself on the opposite edge of the ravine. His thirst for adventure had led him into the forest. And just like the girl he had lost his way. When he heard the sound of crying, he looked around anxiously thinking it might be a ghost, who had followed his way. But soon he realised the crying came from across the ravine and then he saw the light-coloured dress of the girl on the opposite side. He shouted across and gave her a wave. The girl saw his signals and waved back. They both breathed a sigh of relief, no longer did they feel alone. The children were unaware of their parents hostility. 

          Meanwhile the light began to fade and as nightfall came it redoubled their anxiety. Fortunately it was a starry night and moon kindly showed his face. Both children encouraged each other by whistling, singing and shouting. But finally they were so overcome with tiredness and they fell asleep. Strangely, they both had the same dream. This dream showed them a way to come together. Next morning, when they opened their eyes, they saw it had drizzled with rain over night. The clouds had already disappeared but there was still some dampness in the air. The sun had risen and sent warming rays towards the earth. As the children who were still feeling sleepy rubbed their eyes, their dream had become truth. A beautiful rainbow bridged the ravine. They imagined they would be able to rescue themselves from their loneliness meeting each other at the top of this rainbow.   

          At home the girl’s parents as well as those of the boy had spent the night worrying about their children’s fate and as soon as dawn came the following morning, they sat off in search for them. After having roamed about in the forest for many hours without a sign of the children both reached their side of the ravine. This time they had other problems than squabble and threaten each other. Although the discovery of their lost children  made them happy they were horrified when just at that moment both the girl and the boy were on the point stepping off the edge of the ravine to try and climb the rainbow, in order to meet each other. The parents rushed towards the children and pulled them back just in time to prevent them from falling to their deaths. For a long while they stood around deep in thought an feeling sorry for their hostility they had shown each other. They gradually came to realise that the common care for their children’s welfare was more important than all anything else in this world. They agreed that to prevent their children from facing any further disaster, they would immediately get to work, building a strong bridge across the ravine that had separated them for all those years. 

 

 

 

Alle Rechte an diesem Beitrag liegen beim Autoren. Der Beitrag wurde auf e-Stories.org vom Autor eingeschickt Karl Wiener.
Veröffentlicht auf e-Stories.org am 31.01.2009.

 

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