Sunday, April 25, 2010


He kept to himself. The jagged little head. Always behind a tree or in the long grass. He'd watch the others wrestle and tumble in the dirt. He'd watch the grown-ups shopping for the best meats. He'd listen to them bellowing in the karaoke places. He'd keep his distance. Because he could not roar. They thought he was dumb because he would not even speak. Only he knew. He could not roar. Not like the other monsters was he. He didn't belong. He'd bring shame to his family name if they ever knew.

So when he became a teenager, he set out for the mountains one day . Wiping away his tears, he glaced back at his monster village before the hills hid it from him. He was alone now. A tortoise became his friend. He found it crawling so slowly, he felt pity for it. So he began carrying it. The tortoise told him many wise things. One of them was : "It's not whether you can roar or not, it's how loud you can eat." And "Never stare back at a stomping giant." None of them made any sense to him. He'd just listen and not speak. And the tortoise would go on and on. But his voice soothed the monster. He'd often go to sleep smiling, listening to his friend. And the tortoise would not even know.

One day, he came to the edge of the world. Nothing was before him. And only a bare desert behind them. "Nothing has been created beyond this", said his friend. "But I suggest we go forward." The monster looked at the tortoise and back again at the nothingness. He backed up a hundred meters. And then started to run. At the edge, his hairy legs lept into nothingess. Then the monster and the tortoise were gone. They could not be seen any more. A voice spoke though the nothingness. A monster voice. They were still nowhere to be seen. But now they were everywhere. And soaring. Past the desert and over the lands where they had travelled. Then down into the valley where the monster village was. All who lived there called the voice kuba, which meant "happy friend". It often spoke comforting and wise words to whoever paid heed to it. Sometimes it would roar in laughter. And no one was ever afraid of it.