Bards, Lorekeepers, Storytellers. Welcome to the Pavillion!!
This little corner in cyberspace is a dedicated area for you, yes you. Tell us allegories and tales from your part of the world, delight us with myths from legends and folk tales of your race and culture, enlighten and inspire us with wisdom of your religion and philosophy, or keep us intrigued with accounts of urban legends or events said only in whispers from the dark corners of bars and school toilets :D.
Why, you might ask, do we need to pool together popular stories? After all, aren't most of us here writers? Can't we create and write our own stories?
Yes we can, but stories are the key to one's understanding of another culture. By imbibing in the wisdom or plots offered by another, it serves to broaden one's perspective and extend one's depth. This leads to greater creativity and ultimately, better writing.
There is one rule however which ancient Pavillion doctrine state should if possible, not be breached. Each story should not exceed 350 words. If the story is long, write it in interesting series.
Now, the Pavillion opens, and welcome the storytellers in...
January 14th, 2003, 08:20 AM
A nun and a fashion designer, both from Taipei, were relaxing in a pavilion overlooking a small pond. Both were old friends from university and decided to catch up on each other’s news.
It was therefore uncalled for when the fashion designer made the remark. “My, you look like **** old friend. Your saffron robes are so yesterday if not last century. Look, the material is cheaper than toilet paper. And your face!! Barring your lack of hair, it looks like a prune!! Your skin obviously has not seen moisturizers for some time.”
“Oops,” she grimaced, “Major slip of my tongue old friend. Ok, your turn, tell me exactly what you think about how I look. Say the worse things you can think of. Darn, I feel bad.”
The nun nodded and smiled. “What do you look like? Why, you look like the Bodhissatva of Compassion Herself, leaning back in the chair contemplating the world. The watery backdrop just adds to this ambience, if I might add. Your skin glows with the purity of the Dharma, and your eyes glitter with the wisdom of the Buddhas.”
The fashion designer stared at her. “Don’t flatter me. Tell me exactly what you see.”
“But old friend, I am telling you nothing but the truth. When I look at you, that’s exactly what I see.” The nun said. Then she pointed, “Look at that runner over there. Does he not resemble the Buddha, strong and determined? What about that gardener? Look how she tends the flowers so lovingly. She reminds me of Kuan Yin and her compassion…..
The fashion designer peered at the two people. The runner looked like a lout brute while the gardener resembled a loafer wasting her time over just one bush of camellia.
Shaking her head, she said, “Can’t see how you see it.”
The nun replied, “If your heart and mind is filled with the Buddha and the Dharma, you see only the Buddha and the Dharma. If your heart and mind teems with value judgement and dark thoughts, than all you see is the worse in all things
January 14th, 2003, 08:27 AM
Though I retained the message of the story, I have changed the basic plot slightly. The original story had no setting as to where it happened exactly ( I added the pavillion just to keep it in time with the thread ). The conversations were also very short, with the designer only saying that "You look like ****." and the nun replying, "You look like the Buddha". Also, the story had nothing about the runner or the gardener. That I added it in for more action and drama.
Overall though, the story remained the same, just a little fleshier than the skeletal original.
January 14th, 2003, 06:05 PM
I’m the voice of all the Wildest West, the Patti of the Plains.
I’m a wild Wagnerian opera of diabolic strains.
I’m a roaring, runting orchestra with lunatics becrammed.
I’m a vocalized tornado – I’m the shrieking of the damned *
Since 1823 when Major Long and his expedition tried to find the source of the Red River, I have been known. And hated. And hunted. Yet, I still abide. You drove the wolves from your lands and the jaguars and the puma, my superiors. In doing so you opened up the ecological niche I now occupy.
You found me in the desert but now I roam at will through the North American continent except for where the wolves still roam. Behind their backs, I am there, too. I crossed the Mississippi going first into Canada and then migrating east around the headwaters and then south..
More than once, you’ve campaigned to exterminate me. You offered bounty. You sent massive posses to clear me from a locale but I am still there. You built cities in my territory and believed concrete would chase me away. Instead, I roam all your major cities sending chills through mothers of small children and cries of outrage from folks who seek to tame by feeding only to learn that I will bite the hand that feeds, and the legs and the arms and any other body part made available.
I know precisely how many young to bear. My sisters and I bear many when you kill a lot. I alone bear few when our numbers grow.
Those who know us well accept our intelligence, our sense of humor, and bring us into their pantheon of gods. Those who don’t know us well fear us. Fear us! And maybe rightly so for we could replace you had we the urge. For now, we lack the urge. For now, you do all the work and we reap the benefits. Unlike you, we have no need to change what works.
I have a name: coyote.
* Ernest Thompson Seton, "The Coyote's Song", 1913
January 16th, 2003, 10:16 AM
Judge Bao taps his finger over the crescent scar on his forehead.
“Not easy uh?” an officer dressed in the imperial yellow robe said.
Judge Bao leaned backwards. “There is a way. All one needs to do is think.”
“Oh, come on.” The officer stepped forward. “There’s no way you’re going to catch that murderer!! Look out there in the courtyard. Thirty suspects!! Thirty suspects!! Every one having motives and evidence pinned against them for committing the murder. Yet only one person committed the crime for sure!! By Heaven, how are you going to weed out the guilty from that group? We’ve already wasted enough time on this futile case. Let’s just get it over and done with and declare them all guilty!!”
“Never!!” Judge Bao erupted from his seat. “Innocents cannot be deemed guilty at our convenience. Were the Bu…” His voice trailed as he lowered his head.
“Officer,” Judge Bao said, “Bring the suspects to the nearby Buddhist temple. Don’t give me that look. Do it”
Later that night, Judge Bao ambled behind now the naked suspects. With his arm extended, he showered flour on the back of each person. “At dawn, all of you will be in the embrace of your family except the murderer. Why? For behold, the Buddha will tonight mark the back of the guilty. Oh yes he will. All the Buddha wants is for you to remain still so he can mark the guilty without him feeling it lest, knowing he is marked flee from justice.” Saying thus, he ordered the lights be put out, dunking the temple in pitch darkness.
At dawn, the Judge and his entourage returned. Sure enough, out of the thirty backs, only one had the flour disturbed and smeared all over the place. The suspect broke down in tears, now openly admitting guilt. He even clung to the feet of Judge Bao, begging clemency if he returned the jewellery from the victim.
“Did the Buddha really mark his back?” the officer asked.
Judge Bao smiled. “Not really. You see, only the guilty will entertain the idea of the Buddha marking his back. The innocents will not. In the darkness, the guilty cannot see whether there actually is a mark there or not. To play safe, he assumes there is. This makes him do the next safest thing. Wipe off the mark. Having wiped off the mark, he feels better except what he has done is to smear the flour, effectively marking himself!!"
Narrated and Translated:- The Accomplishments Justice Bao circa Song Dynasty
January 16th, 2003, 05:57 PM
The Loremaster tells of the learned Judge Bao. Another Lore Bearer journeys to another continent and tells of another learned judge:
In this part of the world there is a Post Office named Hereford. About six miles due east of that post office there is a river, the San Pedro, and running on the east side of that river is a train track where in the late 1800s there was a siding called Hereford because that’s where they loaded them Herefords onto the train for shipping to Kansas City. These cowmen didn’t believe in cattle drives that weren’t steam powered. So there really wasn’t a town there at all but a dozen miles away was Bisbee. In those times, Bisbee was the center of civilization west of the Mississippi ‘cause San Francisco hadn’t caught on yet.
One day, outside of Bisbee and a little ways on to that Hereford siding, a mob was fixing to lynch this old boy and spirits were running high, the emotional and the liquid. But, just as they were about to throw a rope on the tree, the local judged appeared. He raised his voice but they didn’t hear him so he took out his six-shooter and fired a few rounds into the air.
“Gennuhmen,” he said, “don’t you be lynching this boy. Our town is a fair place and we’re trying to make a name for it as a respectable community.”
“He stole hosses, Judge. That ain’t respectable!,” one of the men yelled.
“I know; I know! All I’m saying is that we ought to give a man a fair trial before we lynch him.”
January 17th, 2003, 05:59 PM
The moon's face
In the north of Arizona and New Mexico, live the people of the Pueblo. They have been here long and understand this country and the world around it. When you listen to them, you learn new truth and new beauty to compliment what you have or fill a void where you have not.
The People tell why the moon has just one eye. Pah-hlee-oh, the first and loveliest woman in all the world had neither father nor mother, sister or brother. In her fair form were the seeds of all humanity – all life and love and goodness. She was joined in this world by T’hoor=id-deh, the Sun, who was to be father of all things. The Trues, the spirits above all, made these two and from them began the world and all that is in it, and all their children were strong and good.
Father-all guarded them by day and night – only there was no night for the Moon had two eyes and saw as clear as her husband, the Sun. But, the endless light grew heavy on the children without night to rest and the Trues thought to take one of the Father’s eyes to make a night. But when she heard their plan, the Moon-Maiden cried: “No! No! Take my eyes for my children but do not blind the sun. He is the father, the provider – and how shall he watch against harm or find us game without his bright eyes. Blind me and keep him all-seeing.”
The Trues said: “It is well, daughter” and they took away one of her eyes. Then night came on the tired earth and the flowers and birds and people slept their first sleep, and it was very good.
She who first had the love of children and paid for them with her pain as mothers do, she did not grow ugly. Nay, she is lovelier than ever. For the Trues are good to her and gave her in place of the bloom of girlhood, the beauty that is only in the face of mothers.
January 20th, 2003, 12:04 PM
The period of the Warring States in Chinese history was marked by the great number wars between many kingdoms. During this period, there were two kingdoms that lay adjacent with each other. The kingdom of Cheng and the kingdom of Hu. Both kingdoms had a less than cordial relationship with each other and there were constant border skirmishes to establish each other's territory. Now, the kingdom of Hu, being more resource rich both agriculturally and mineral wise was quickly becoming stronger than the kingdom of Cheng.
The kingdom of Cheng at this period was ruled by King Wu. King Wu was a silently ambitious man, intending to single handedly rule over both Cheng and Hu, though with the increasing strength of Hu that prospect seemed more dim by the months.
So, he married off his daughter to the King of Hu instead.
A few weeks after the marriage, King Wu decided to call for a meeting between his most senior officials. The purpose of the meeting could be summarised by the first sentence he spoke as soon as he stepped into the council room.
"There is a need for a military campaign given the current level of border skirmishes we are experiencing between our neighbours. Which nation should we invade to deter further infringement onto our territory?"
One officer quickly jumped, "The Kingdom of Hu Your Majesty!! It has eaten into our border just recently and we need to quickly reclaim back our land."
King Wu glared at the officer, "Treason! The Kingdom of Hu is our brother state now and like brothers, we will solve the problem diplomatically. How dare you even suggest invasion."
The officer was quickly executed for making this unpleasent remark.
The King of Hu, upon hearing this a few days later, was so delighted he removed all his army from guarding the Cheng/Hu border. This was further reinforced by his new consort who assured him that her father was still fuming at the officer's remark.
Three months later, King Wu rode with his army into the Hu kingdom, and became supreme ruler of both Hu and Cheng.
January 20th, 2003, 03:09 PM
One Way o’ Proposin’
Oh, Sue was young and Sue was fair
And Sue was slim and neat.
She helped support her crippled dad
By servin’ stuff to eat
To hungry cowboys stoppin’ in
From wranglin’ stock all weary,
And plenty o’ us hankered hard
To have Sue for our dearie.
Most specially young Bashful Burt
A top hand with the herd.
But too ungodly modest
To attempt a courtin’ word.
She turned the rest o’ us plumb down,
So sweet it hardly hurt,
And then we seen the way it was—
She hankered after Burt.
Am him all blush and bashfulness,
The pore cow punchin’ sinner,
He had her won already
But was still too dumb to win her.
Then one fine day a drummer guy
Breezed in for noonday chow,
And growled about the service
Like he hankered for a row.
The fare was beans – and mighty fine,
I know, for I was there.
But this here uppish drummer bowed his neck
And pawed the air.
Shoved back his beans plumb unpolite:
“I ain’t no hired help!
Bring me some food that’s civilized!”
You should of heard him yelp.
Pore Sue looked all beflustered.
Then Burt riz up in his jeans,
Drawed out his gun and calmly says:
“Now, stranger, eat them beans!”
Then Sue looks up adorin’
And toward Burt kinder leans.
Till all at once he kisses her ---
And the stranger eats his beans.
S. Omar Barker
February 9th, 2003, 06:31 PM
Sorry this has been so long in coming Aik
In the late 18th century, so the story goes, a young woman was passing along the road between Carmarthen and Pendine, going to market with two beautiful, white horses of 15 hands for sale, she was just riding beside a great mound in the earth known locally as King's Tomb when a small, strangely shaped man appeared from seemingly nowhere and stood in the road blocking her path. He looked odd but there was no threat and when he spoke his voice was rich and dark
"Are you taking those horses to market?" he enquired
"I am indeed sir?" the woman replied politely
"And how much would you get for them?"
"I am hoping for a gold piece each"
"Good luck to you then, but should you not sell them please return this way, I may wish to buy them from you" said the small man before disappearing from wherever it was he came.
The young woman thought no more on it and went on her way, when she got to the market she found that no-one would buy the horses, the price is too expensive was often the reply and the woman left rather than accept a value less than what she believed them worth. On her way back she saw King's Tomb and headed for it, sure enough there was the small man waiting at the roadside.
"I will give you two gold pieces for each horse," he said, throwing her a small purse containing four gold coins, "bring the horses back to this road at dawn tomorrow." With that he was gone again. The young woman eyed the coins happily and moved home with a smile on her face. She returned just before the sun rose the next morning but the man was not there. As the first light streaked the dawn sky she heard a quiet grinding noise coming from the side of Kings Tomb facing away from the road. Curiousity struck the woman and she wandered around the mound to find a winding path leading up the side of the mound. She followed it to the very top of the mound and there she saw a large door which was opening as she watched. Out came the small man walking briskly and muttering only to stop dead at the sight of the young woman and the horses, with a profound sigh he ushered her in. As she lead the horses through the door, it closed behind her. Inside the mound were stables and many rooms, the young woman was amazed.
"What is this place?" she asked in awe.
A sad smile crossed the small mans face then, he lead the horses into two free slots, alongside eighteen other beautiful white horses in the stable, he turned then to look at the young woman and motioned for her to follow him. Without fear she followed him into a room and there lying on a bed was a large man with a crown upon his head and the most wonderous sword the woman had ever seen, her eyes flew wide in a moment of recognition at who lay before her "Arthur" was all she could say before the enchantment of the place took her. She sleeps too now waiting for the King to return.