The Woodcarver

Once there was a wood carver who lived at the edge of the village. He was the best wood carver for miles and miles, but he was also very clumsy. People would come to marvel at his carvings, and then giggle as he dropped his tools or spilled his coffee.

The wood carver didn't mind the giggling. He had a fine life, and wanted for nothing. Nothing, that is, except a child.

One day, as he was walking the woods to find good stock, he came upon a mysterious stump. The stump glowed like a full moon in the brightest daylight. It was the most marvelous wood that the carver had ever seen, and he brought it back to his shop immediately.

For seven days and seven nights, the carver worked on the strange wood. When he was done, he looked in pride at a wooden boy. The carver was only a little surprised when the boy's eyes opened, and the boy looked back at him.

But as the wood carver stared into the boys eye's he realized something. There was nothing within those eyes, no spark of recognition. The wooden boy was the blankest of blank slates.

The woodcarver wasn't worried by this. He always thought he'd make a great father, and he set to the task with diligence. He taught the wooden boy how to move his arms, how to walk, how to talk. Finally, he taught the boy his most cherished knowledge: the carving of wood.

But even as a father, the carver was still very clumsy. He would demonstrate how to walk, only to trip over his own feet. He would try to show how to talk, only to mis-speak or mumble his words. Even at wood-carving, the carver would demonstrate a cut and drop his knife to the floor.

The wooden boy learned all these things. The boy learned to walk and to trip, to talk and to mumble, to carve and to drop tools. The boy was a very good student.

When the wood carver told the boy not to trip, the boy learned to say that you shouldn't trip. Still the boy tripped, but know he seemed contrite about it.

The wood carver and his knew son lived happily for many years. As the wood carver aged, he marveled that the boy did not.

There came a day when the wood carver had to be laid to rest in a box of his own design. The wooden boy cried, just as he had been taught. Then he went home and carved wood.

One day, many years later, the boy was gleaning in the woods for new carving stock. The boy came upon a strange and eiry stump. It glowed with the light of the full moon, even at the brightest part of the day. The wooden boy knew exactly what to do.