Saturday, 24 September 2016

Altar Ego

It was a cloudy but surprisingly warm September afternoon. Mystery Monk was out in the garden, admiring the changing of the seasons.  The distant trees were slowly acquiring their autumn colours, with tinges of red, orange and yellow becoming increasingly noticeable. Some of the plants were loosing their final petals. Mystery Monk breathed in deeply, and savoured the pungent aroma of smoke as leaves and weeds were burnt on nearby allotments, as a sacrifice to the produce of subsequent seasons.
"Autumn is surely here!" he declared.  "Summer has slipped away"
"Don't sound so mournful. After all before you know it Christmas will be here - Your favourite season! the Abbot reminded him.
"True. I just wish that winter was shorter!" grumbled the young monk.

Mystery Monk continued his amble around the garden when all of a sudden he came to a sudden stop.
"A secret altar" he breathed. "I wonder why these gifts have been placed there..." He took a closer look, and smiled.
 The Abbot hurried across the garden to see what had caught the young monk's attention .
"Most unusual!" declared the Abbot, frantically trying to recall what the current policy was on 'signs, visions, wonders and unexpected appearances'.

"Look at the perfect placement of these stones!
It is an offering worthy of our Lord" enthused
Mystery Monk.
"Quick, get your camera" urged the Abbot, " I need some photos to send off Canterbury!  This will surely get our small suburban community on the map!" 
Mystery Monk carefully hid his smile behind his camera.
Just as he was taking some photographs Howard's head appeared over the fence
"Hello Abbot, Hello Brother Beckham"
"Mystery Monk IS the name!" replied the young monk.
"What kind of name is that?" enquired the lad.
"It's a mystery...." responded the Abbot.

Howard observed the photographic activities
"Are you taking photos as evidence? he asked.
"No, I am taking a photo of this wondrous offering from the....little people" replied Mystery Monk.
"Like the Borrowers?"
"Well you never know..."Mystery Monk smiled.
"I have a confession to make" declared Howard importantly.  "The little person who put those stones on that larger stone was me!  I climbed over to get my football the other day and couldn't resist digging them out of the flower bed, but I couldn't see anywhere sensible to put them..."
The Abbot looked at Howard, as the penny dropped.
"YOU are the little person!?"
"Yes," replied Howard, "but I won't always be little. I am still growing!"
"I actually really like the way you have arranged the stones.  There is great beauty and harmony in the arrangement." mused Mystery Monk.
" I think that is 1-0 to Brother Beckham!" declared Howard before adding "Sorry Abbot."
"Humph!" snorted the Abbot, "Forget Canterbury, I am off to ring the Tate!" and he departed to seek consolation in prayer and coffee.

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