The Stump in the Meadow

A stump sat in the middle of a meadow brimming with wildflowers, and weeds, and butterflies, and birdsong, and little creatures. Each morning, as the sun rose, a wise old man sank onto that stump. And the wisdom of the ages filled him.

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It was more than enough.

One still morning, the stump sat empty. The wildflowers, and the weeds, and the butterflies, and the birds, and the little creatures rejoiced, for they felt closer than ever to the wise old man.

One evening, at sunset . . .

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a young man, whom the meadow did not know, sat upon the stump. His mind whirled with questions.

Who am I?

How can I prosper?

The meadow answered,

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but the young man did not hear.

Next morning, as the sun rose, a tractor chugged. Steel blades ripped into the meadow.

At the stump, the tractor stopped. “There’s that stump,” the young man grumbled. “Stuck in the middle of my meadow. I’ll have to come back for it later.” He eased the tractor round.

Years passed. Cycles of corn towered. The stump sat forgotten.

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Early one spring, before plowing, the man set out to remove the stump, something he should have done years ago. The meadow, cloaked in stubby corn, crackled under his footsteps. When he reached the stump, he bent to lift it.

It wouldn’t budge.

He pushed with all his might.

It still wouldn’t budge.

Sweat dripped from his brow. “Whew.” He rested on the stump. “Guess I’ll need the tractor.”

A scraggly piece of wild mustard bloomed alongside the stump. He reached to yank it. A swallow swooshed his hat. “Hey!” He swatted.

From far away, the frolicking song of a mockingbird filled the morning.

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The notes drifted loud over the empty field. A ray of morning sun hit the man in the chest. His gaze traveled high into the vast blue.

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A gentle breeze ruffled the hair on his brow, and like that breeze, something deep within him stirred. Something larger than himself.

It was an answer nibbling at his soul, and for the first time, he listened.

*****

Go to the meadow. Find your answers.

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All photographs and words property of author.

Latest Comments

  1. bayphotosbydonna says:

    Lovely post and photos!

    Like

  2. Georges 2679 says:

    magnifique….bonne soirée

    Like

  3. Eliza Waters says:

    A wise tale, but I was sad that the meadow was plowed over for corn. The biodiversity was much better – such is the folly of man.

    Like

  4. Whitney Hagen says:

    Did you write this, Julie? It’s very good! Thanks for sharing.

    Like

  5. D. Wallace Peach says:

    What a lovely story and awesomely beautiful photos. Meadows have a special place in my heart. Especially if they have a stump or a nice big rock 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jill Richards Proctor says:

    This is really beautiful, Julie. A wise old story and gorgeously soft and tender photos. I love meadows. And stumps. I have a few of my own.

    Like

  7. Nurse Kelly says:

    Wow, Julie. Loved every thought and image in this. Just a beautiful write. I’d love to visit that meadow! 🙂

    Like

  8. anotherday2paradise says:

    Awesome post, Julie! Love your wonderful images and story. So magical. 🙂

    Like

  9. derrickjknight says:

    Your usual beautiful photography and fascinating linking story

    Like

  10. Jane says:

    How beautiful, Julie! Your images and words are always so inspiring and fill us with joy. Thank you. 🙂

    Like

  11. Ann Coleman says:

    That was both beautiful and wise! Thanks…

    Like

  12. Val says:

    Beautiful words and images. Thank you, as ever.

    Like

  13. FlowerAlley says:

    I loved this. I am an old stump. Sometimes I feel like my years of wisdom have been replaced by fast and young. They need to slow down and be thoughtful. I wonder and ponder on this a lot lately. Well done again Prairie Princess.

    Like

  14. bythebriny says:

    Wonderful story and photos.

    Like

  15. Brenda Davis Harsham says:

    Those are some beautiful photos. Your story reminds me of the Giving Tree. This could be the sequel. 🙂

    Like

  16. Amy says:

    How very beautiful! Love these photos. 🙂

    Like

  17. Julie@frogpondfarm says:

    Oh your post has made me teary! So beautiful .. we can learn so much from nature can’t we. I suspect that man left that stump where it was. Thank you for such for this and the wonderful images … 😀

    Like

  18. Tammi Kale says:

    Absolutely stunning posts!

    Like

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