Wednesday, October 22, 2008 | |

Short Story – Aren’t We All Collecting Dry Twigs and Leaves?

An old man who used to live in a small village of India had a fanatic obsession for collecting dry twigs and leaves. The whole day he would wander about the village and collect the dry twigs and leaves that had fallen from the trees. By evening when his jute bag, which he carried on his shoulders, would become full and he would proceed towards the river that flowed through the village. Then he would empty his jute bag in the river.

This procedure he carried on daily without fail. The people of the village tagged him as inane and they neither advised him nor obstructed him in his activity.

However, one day when the old man was emptying his bag in the river a young boy saw him. He became curious about it and could not understand why the old man emptied his bag full of dry twigs and leaves into the river. For him it was a useless thing.

The boy decided to follow the old man.

The young boy quietly followed the old man and he saw the same thing daily – the old man would collect the dry twigs and leaves and in the evening would all throw them into the river.

On the seventh evening of his pursuit of the old man the boy could no longer hold himself and as the old man was just about to empty his sack in the river, the boy asked him in a somewhat irritating voice, ‘What is this madness, that you pursue daily? Why? Can’t you do any fruitful work?’

And the old man looked towards the boy, gave a small smile and returned to his work of emptying the sack.

The boy repeated his question.

The old man, now, had finished his work but he sat still looking at the water carrying away his twigs and leaves without replying to the boy.

And again the boy repeated his question, this time his voice being more louder.

The old man stood up, stared at the boy and began to laugh so loudly that the boy became afraid. But, after a moment he regained his usual composure and laying his hands on the boy’s shoulders said to him, ‘Son, what other than this are the people of the world doing? Aren’t they all collecting dry twigs and dry leaves?’

Written by Parvez Ahmed on the 18th of October, 2008.


Christy said...

Cute short story, I enjoyed reading it.

admin said...

Christy, I thank you from the core of my heart for the compliment. I am very happy to hear that you liked my story.

I hope you will continue to read them.