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The Boy Who Cried
(first draft)

There once was a shepherd boy, a roguish lad who delighted in sowing furor. One day, inspired by a spirit of mischief, he began to cry. No word in particular did he cry, he simply wept openly and loudly. The little village by the swamps had excellent acoustics, so the lad's sobs carried far across hill and dale. A crowd was made curious by the clamour, and hastened anon to the fields where the shepherd wept.

'Pon arriving, the townspeople were met with a remarkable sight. For here was a boy in the bloom of health, yet whose eyes were aweep. His heart quails at the thought of crokodyles coming to snatch his sheep, poodles, and infants (said one). P'raps he feels the scourge of depression (said another). Nay (said a third) my brother once knew a fellow that hath suffered the same. 'Tis post traumatic stress disorder, I bargain.

Then, all eyes marveled when the lad jumped 'pon a sheep and, laughing merrily, taunted the goodfolk of his village. Fools! (said he) I hath played you as like a cheap viol! I suffer not! Ha ha! At this, the townspeople grumbled heartily, and as a mass forged a path towards the village center, discussing loudly the lack of respect shown by children of late. But, 'pon arriving on village green, the keen-eared among them detected again the sounds of woe. As before, the townsfolk turned to the sheep fields, where they found the lad again with eyes of tears. And once again, 'pon espying his neighbours' approach, the shepherd leapt up with mocking speech. Again the people left, again the shepherd cried, again the people rushed to his aid, &tc.

A fortnight passed in which every moon found townspeople awakening to the lad's sobbing. At last, thru habit, the township ears were deafened to cries of woe. Such development dishearten'd the young shepherd, who soon tired of his tricks and began a program of learning the ways of three card monte. But his damage was done, and the town was long numb to sound of tears. And thus, when the shepherd lad was mugged, his sheep stole, and his "Dummies Guide to Three Card Monte" mangled, not a whit of help was offered. And so, older and wiser, the boy who cried turned in his sheepherding badge and returned to the Polytechnic, there to study bridgebuilding.

The Moral

'Tis healthy for everyone, including the heartiest man, to cry on occasion, for tears are the sign of a sensitive soul. But one who cries nonstop is naught but a pain in the tookus.

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