He stood about 6 ft 3 and the age of 77 maybe 78,
His hearing was bout gone, and his eyesight wasn’t that great.
He scratched his balding head, with still a few grey hairs,
And continued rocking in his old rocking chair.
He liked his rocker out on the porch, he seen many a day,
He seen, sunshine, and rain, and from time to time young’uns play.
He smiled a toothless smile, so many hardships, but life was good,
And it seemed like forever he had lived in this neighborhood.
Ole blue crawled out from under the porch, looked around and sat at his feet,
Yep, it was time. Every day, same time, neighborhood kids come took a seat.
Stories. Yep, he had so many that he could tell, made him feel good. Yep shore enough.
Kept them young’uns outa trouble too, some had come tried to act all tough.
Shoot they had a new one with them, well more the merrier he liked crowds,
The only thing sometimes his voice cracked and it wasn’t that loud.
“Welcome boys, yun’s want to gather round and set a spell,
I spect I’ll come up with some kinda tale that I can tell.”
They all sat down on the old wooden porch as close as they could get,
He sat there for a minute thinking, waiting, no, no, not yet.
Always waiting for them to let their eagerness show,
That’s the way of a good storyteller as everyone knows.
“So watcha think boys, knights or some pirate’s buried treasure,”
Yep, that hit the nail on the head they were smiling with pleasure.
“Let’s see now, where should I begin this tale of pirates and such,
Well, we settled boys? Looking at the newcomer. Something’s wrong, just a hunch.
“Seashells and sandy shores, footprints along the beach,
Sunshine, a north shadow, always just out of reach.
Aye a scurvy lot, with their cutlass and swords,
Killing anyone that sought their rewards.
Buried deep, buried wide, under the rock near the tree,
But no if they were smart they would leave it be.
A ghost protects their treasure the ghost of Giant Jim,
Forever he wanders, just daring to take the treasure from him.
Bones to dust ground so fine, flesh all but disappeared,
Eyes of fire, breath of death, matted grey beard.
He didn’t float through the air, nor walk through walls,
His pace was steady, his destination the waterfall.
Visitors, oh yes, they could not sneak passed his guard,
Nay, not his treasure, he would make it extremely hard.
Quicksand, hah well they got what was coming their way,
Centuries have passed, and the treasure, well it’s still there today.”
The boys all hugged him, thanked him and went on their way,
All except the newcomer, who had no place to stay.
Of the week the storyteller sent him to school, and searched for him a home,
But it wasn’t to be, because all the places were so wrong.
Ten years and the boy had graduated school and become a man,
The old storyteller was a daddy and the best friend he ever had.
He kissed the old man on the cheek and promised not to be too late,
His boy was grown now, he smiled, yep life had been good, it was fate.
He died with a song in his heart and a smile on his lips, and a heart full of love,
His adopted son took his place on the porch, and the storyteller looked down from above.
Oh, how he missed him, he almost didn’t come that day, he almost stayed behind,
Good thing he did, that started the very best years of his life.
© Cynthia Clark