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Second Insight

Creating Patterns – The Magic of Human Kindness

"…..he was intrigued by the way she played.”

One day, when the young June sunshine was warming the wood and playing its sunbeams over a rippling stream, a little girl was crouched at the edge of the water reaching down for the shiny smooth pebbles which lay tantalisingly on the stream bed.

To her they were precious jewels which she treasured, feeling the smooth weight of them in her hands. She had gathered a few beside her and was organising them, with great care and precision, into a particular order which was greatly significant to her.

After contemplating her ordered work she became aware that the smooth, round, jet pebble was beckoning to her. Taking it in her hand she gazed at it, followed its bidding, and flung it back in the stream.

The stream hit back at her, splashing water into her eyes, making her take a step back and look up. A magpie.

Her heart missed a beat, a solitary magpie, one for sorrow. She didn’t like the feeling that began to take grip of her. There it was again, resolutely alone. She remembered the old law and looked quickly into the stream and caught the sight of its reflection. Two for joy. She rippled the surface of the water, creating three for a girl then four for a boy.

She stopped. That was enough. She felt the sudden cold as the sun hid behind a cloud, and she caught sight of a fish darting to hide behind a stone. She heard the warning croak of a frog. With utter composure, she turned to greet the approach of the boy.

Cross and lost inside himself; she didn’t fear him. She turned from him and returned to the demands of the order of her stones. He didn’t run from her, he didn’t feel afraid of her. He noted that she was smaller than he. A great feeling of brutish power began to course its way through him, making him feel mighty and strong.

He observed her practising her stone ritual for a while and, as he watched her at play, he became more and more aware of the brutal nature of this strange new power that was feeding his sense of personal strength. After a few moments he strode over to her, grabbed her by her wrist and shouted at her to leave his stream alone.

The young girl was shocked by his ferocity; his angry grip was cutting into her wrist. “Let me go, let me go,” she cried, “you’re hurting me, let go of me.”

“You’ve no right to be playing here, it’s my stream,” the boy scolded her.

“What do you mean it’s your stream, you stupid….” she retorted. “This stream doesn’t belong to anybody. Anyone can play in it. Who do you think you are? Go away and leave me alone.” Her dark eyes blazed at him.

He tried to summon his brute strength to glare back at them. He failed, and quickly turned on his heels and left. He felt angry; angry that the small girl had argued with him, angry that he had walked away, angry at the memory of her playing happily, seemingly oblivious to him. The girl stayed. She didn’t go away.

She was there the next day, and the next day, and the next, and the next. Every day they met and every day he felt that particular brute strength and argued with her, and every day the little boy would come away feeling cross and powerless.

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