Once upon a time in an old farmhouse. A little boy lived with his father. His father was a good father but his father’s heart was sad.
Every time the little boy sat on his father’s knee and put his head on his father’s chest. He could hear his father’s heart crying a sad song. This little boy felt his father’s sad heart So he tried to be especially good to make his father’s sad heart joyful. And whilst this father loved his son, he held a deep, deep secret and so he had sealed his heart and it was wrapped in stone all around it so no one, not even his son could break into it.
This made the little boy sad because he loved his father.
One day, the little boy was wondering how he could make his father happy. He sat with his cat, thinking and thinking what could he do for his father…
He thought maybe, just maybe, he could give his father all his toys; maybe this would make him happy. But when the toys came out and he played with them. His father would only tell him to tidy them up.
He thought that maybe he could make his father happy by being the best little boy that one could be in school but then he realised that his father would not be at school to see him.
He wondered what could he do? And he lay down with his cat and closed his eyes and left the question to run around and around his head.
His father gently woke him up for dinner and bath time. And still he had no answer so he put his head next to his father’s chest and listened to the sad song. And a thought came to his head, maybe he could share his friends with his father, maybe that would make his father’s heart happy. But whilst he was sitting in the bath playing with his ducks, he realised his friends were too young for his father (and they would just exhaust him!)
But it was a moment that had potential. His father needed a loving friend. But the little boy had no idea, how he would find a loving friend for his father. And then another thought occurred to him, he would go and find his father a friend, a magical friend, who could remove the rock surrounding his father’s heart.
And so as he hugged and cuddled and tickled his father before story time and before bed time. He felt good because he had a quest. He would go on a journey to find a friend for his father.
That night, the little boy slept soundly whilst his father slept badly. His father always slept badly because the deep deep secret writhed in his heart and caused him lots of pain and lots of sadness and he did not want to release this onto others. You see the rock was wrapped around his father’s heart so that he could protect his son from this secret which turned into a monster in his heart. That is how great and wonderful his father’s love was!
In the morning, the little boy woke up and was ready for his mission to find a friend for his father. At breakfast he said, “Papa, can you please pack me a picnic lunch; today I have a journey to go on to the end of the garden.”
A tired kindly father agreed to his son’s request and packed him all his favourite foods like yummy tomatoes and delicious chicken and scrumptious apple juice and his favourite rosy red strawberries. Papa promised his ice cream when he returned from his adventure because Papa knew that was his favourite dessert.
The little boy set out on the path, he would walk all day and all night so that he could make his father happy that is how much he loved his father. As so he started walking and walking and walking soon he came upon a fox and the little boy asked the fox, “will you be a friend to my father?”
The fox was a kindly fox not sly and mean like some other foxes and she responded, “I cannot be a friend to your father because I am a fox. Walk on further perhaps someone else can be a friend.”
And so he continued walking and walking and soon he got very tired and sat down next to a strong tree. The tree was whispering and talking to the wind who was gently blowing news of Africa to the tree so the little boy asked, “Mr Tree can you be a friend to my father?”
The tree replied sagely , “My son I am a friend to all who sit under my branches but I cannot be a friend to your father because I cannot walk to him. Walk a little further perhaps you will find your friend along the path.”
And so the little boy thanked the tree and waved to the wind and continued walking. By now, he was very very tired and feeling a little sad himself that he had no found his father’s friend. He was now near the end of his garden and the journey had taken such a long time. He was hungry too, as he had eaten his lunch with the tree and the wind. He sat down and started to cry as he wondered what he was going to do to save his father.
As he was feeling sorry for himself a beautiful blue and purple and silver butterfly came and settled on his knee and on the other knee a beautiful yellow and green and gold butterfly settled on his knee and on his head sat a beautiful indigo and violet and red butterfly settled on his nose, which made him laugh as he wiped away his tears. Then a rainbow settled in front of him and a beautiful silver white-haired angel, (there were wings on the back to prove it was an angel) shimmied down the rainbow. The angel did not look like an angel but was wearing bright golden trainers, blue dungarees and a crazy rainbow cap. The angel said to the little boy, “Why so sad?”
The little boy explained his quest to the angel and the angel listened carefully and pondered. Whilst the angel pondered all the seasons exploded and danced above the little boys head; the snow danced with the sun and the autumn leaves whirled around the spring-time flowers. There thunder drummed whilst the rain sang and happy song. It went a bit like this:
Pitter patter pat
Jiggle and juggle a thought
Wriggle and wiggle a worry away
The thoughts have come out to play
So father’s sad heart can learn that it is wrong
To sing a sad song
Pitter patter pat
Jiggle wiggle giggle
Giggle giggle wriggle
A happy thought has just come my way!
And with that the dancing stopped. The angel spoke and said, “ You are the only one who can save your father . You are right he needs a friend but you are not just a son, you are and will always be more, for one day you will grow into his friend. All fathers need their sons, not just as sons but friends.”
The little boy thought about this and liked this idea because he loved his father dearly. But he did have a question about the solution and he said, “But I am not yet grown and I am only a little boy, will my father still have a sad heart until I grow into a man?”
The little boy was an incredibly intelligent little boy and the angel was impressed , the angel spoke, “we will help you but you have to believe that even though you are so small, you are strong enough and loving enough to save your father but you must follow my instructions exactly.” The little boy nodded and listened very carefully to what the angel had to say, the little boy was so excited and he was so pleased that he was going to get the help of the butterflies that he almost forgot to get all the instructions from the angel.
The little boy and the butterflies raced up the path to the old farmhouse they raced into the kitchen to find his father but he was not there, they raced into the lounge and found him in his chair. The little boy pulled his father up and held his hands tightly as he turned him round and round and round until both father and son were dizzy and whizzy. The butterflies whizzed around them both and as all of this was happening the stone around the father’s heart crumbled and the father cried out in pain and fear and worry but the heart beat on and in the turning and twirling the deep dark secret seeped out of the father’s heart and up into the air where the kindly angel was waiting to take it away from this old farmhouse.
The farmhouse no longer looked old but it looked happy and father and son danced joyfully in the lightness of love.