Tales : To Whom Does it Belong?

There were, once upon a time, two neighbours who lived in a little village, and through the course of time they had fallen into the habit of arguing about a certain small piece of land. Each one insisted that the ground belonged to him, that he had received it from his family, that the other one had no right to it, and so forth.

As often happens in such cases, the dispute would smoulder like an underground fire for weeks or even months, and then a spark would set the two men raging again, and they would be seen standing in the disputed piece of land, shouting abuse and threatening violence, each one claiming the earth for himself.

But on one such occasion, there was an old woman passing, and when she heard the noise she stopped to see what was happening.

“You are like little boys,” she told them. “Grown-ups take such matters to a judge. I will judge between you.”

As she was an impartial stranger, and spoke with authority, the two men agreed. Then, leaning on her stick, she made them tell her what was the matter, and each one declared before her why the land belonged to him.

“You say the land belongs to you,” she said, pointing a long, bony finger at one. “And you say it belongs to you,” pointing at the other. “But what does the land say?” And she hobbled past them and lay down, pressing her ear to the earth.

After a long time listening, she got up and said, “This earth says she does not belong to you, or to you, but that you both belong to her. And she is waiting for you.”

After that, the woman went away, and they never saw her again. But somehow the two neighbours didn’t feel like arguing anymore about the little piece of land.

And years later, when first one and then the other passed away, it happened that the bones of both were buried in that same ground.

One Reply to “Tales : To Whom Does it Belong?”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.