Short Stories

The star-shaped village and its castle of words.

Once upon a yesteryear, in a cavernous castle, there lived a tiny young woman with eyes as big as her forlorn heart.

Now, this castle was spectacularly crafted! For it was built of neither brick nor stone. Not mortar nor mere tar could be found amongst its multitudinous crevices. No, this castle was made of something quite fine.

It was made of words. Breathe crystallized in cold air; meaning forever fixed in flourishes upon an exceedingly grand roof. Against the ceiling were they painted and upon each other built: a sculpture of feeling, largely expressive, but large, also.

The little woman’s life was a beautiful one, all garbed in meaning. “Communicative,” she would explain to the walls.

You see, in living a quiet life, one often lives alone. In this case, most peculiarly, the young woman was, in fact, surrounded by people. Little houses of many splendid colours formed a bright star-shaped village around the castle. Children played oft in view of the lady, although she was unable to reach them.

The conundrum presented by living in a castle built up entirely of words, is that words are both fragile and strong simultaneously. Hardly an efficient building material, if you ask me! But, castles are meant to be beautiful rather than practical, I suppose.

So it happened that our dear lady was trapped from the outside word whilst safely harbored in the comfort of her castle.

With her big eyes she would stare out across the star-shaped village, wondering at all the colourful sights! Words are many times quite clear, you see, allowing the young woman to look straight through them. Although this was only true in certain spots. Other places were dim and murky, as ambiguity befuddled the view.

One day, our young lady felt a desperate pang of loneliness so severe that she could hardly bear it. Her eyes were brimming with curiosity and she ached with every bit of her being to go outside of her castle. It was such an overwhelming flood of emotion that drove her to do the most impossible of things:

She touched the words.

Very lady-like, as befitting a young woman, she reached out a delicate little hand and softly planted a seedling of a finger against the words’ surface.

Slowly, a lone crack appeared in the castle’s extravagant exterior and the entire structure fell apart.

Now, amidst such a literal downfall, it was highly unlikely that the young woman would escape utterly unharmed. Hence, she didn’t. As the words fell about her, she was scratched by quite a few. A deep burning sensation churned in her chest. And yet there were other words that seemed so soft and snow-like, she couldn’t resist a smile!

Presently she stood, a little woman in a tiny village, looking happily up at the sun.

Once upon a yesteryear, a tiny young woman realized, at the demise of her cavernous castle, that words on the outside could build, but also break when not bubbled up from the you that you truly are.

She decided to no longer be small in stature, for she was lengthy and large in her words. And she chose them carefully.

A great castle means nothing to one who lives in it alone. Yet, when words are used in unity, they have the potential to connect people and to shine, like a bright village star!


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