The Scarecrow and the Rook

The Doleful Tale of the Scarecrow and the Rook:

In the middle of a great pumpkin patch, stood a scarecrow on a pole.

And he was sad, because he was all alone,

and because he would never see the great things of the world.

Sometimes, he would watch the birds high overhead,

soaring through the sky like angels.

The scarecrow would think to himself,

“How grand a life it must be to be a bird,

seeing the wonders of creation from the sky.”

And he would sigh, because he was all alone,

and because he would never see the great things of the world.

One day, a beautiful, ebony rook saw the great pumpkin patch,

and the plump, succulent orbs within.

She glided down to have a snack.

Said the scarecrow to the rook: “Miss Rook, you are beautiful and elegant

and must have seen many wonderful adventures through your travels.

I am but a humble scarecrow on a pole,

and have no one to keep me company but my pumpkins.

Please, will you sit with me a while, and tell me a story

of the great things of the world?”

The rook replied: “Brother Scarecrow, I see that you are sad

and long for the company of a friend.

It shall be my honour to tell you tales of the great things world,

if you will but let me fill my belly

with one of your delicious pumpkins.”

The scarecrow was only too happy to oblige,

and so the young rook perched on a nearby pumpkin,

and as she ate, she told the scarecrow a wonderful tale.

The years passed, and every day, the rook would return

and would tell the scarecrow stories of goblins and pirates,

and great wars and of treasure and dragons,

and of all the great things of the world.

And every day, the scarecrow would share with her

one of his many pumpkins.

One day, the rook returned to the pumpkin patch

just as she had done every day for so many years,

and she said: “Brother Scarecrow,

we have had a long and marvelous friendship.

You have remained young and beautiful as ever,

but I have grown old, and my bones are tired.

If it please you, today I shall take a rest first,

and when I wake, then I shall tell you a tale of the great things of the world.

The scarecrow smiled down at the rook as she lay down to sleep,

and he felt a great pang of sadness in his heart,

for he knew that from this sleep, she would never wake.

He whispered to her, “Goodnight forever, my beautiful love.”

And the rook died while she slept.

A great tear trickled down the scarecrow’s burlap face,

and he quivered with sadness and joy together,

because he was scared to be all alone again,

but he knew that he had seen

and had known

and had loved

the greatest Thing of the world.