Thursday, October 17, 2013

Free to Fly--Dare to be creative {Day 17}

Okay, before you sit down, grab a cup of tea for this one. 

About seven years ago, I was inspired to write this short story because a coffee shop here in town called Cafe Diem hosted a short story contest. The requirement for the short story, was that it had to have a coffee shop included in it. 

I decided that I would share my coffee shop short story with you today, because I dared to be creative and to try my hand at a fictional story. 

I especially like allegories, which are fictional but contain elements of truth. I hope you enjoy my allegory short story called, Free to Fly.


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Bella sleepily opened her tiny, black eyes as she inhaled the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Thin rays of sunlight were streaming in through the wavy glass and across the edge of her nest perched on the highest beam of the old post office turned The Daily Grind.

On this day, as she awoke in her nest, the coffee shop was abuzz with busy commuters, overworked mothers, and the regular group of wise cracking old men arriving for their daily round of hot steamy stuff and conversation.

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Bella grudgingly went about tidying up her nest. She found herself in the same old downward spiral. The past few months she had been especially frustrated with Sam, and was lamenting son Jeremy flying away to a nest of his own. 

Sam’s friendship had come as a sweet surprise to her when they had first met. Even even way back then, though, Bella had noticed a small brown backpack on her sparrow mate’s feathered back and had asked Sam about it.

Sam was strangely unaware of it, and thought it odd that Bella would make this thing up just to tease him. She decided not to press the issue. 

***********************

Her thoughts were suddenly interrupted by the tiny bell that rang signaling a new customer at the shop. Coffee sippers looked up from their morning papers as the old wooden door creaked open.

Bella was used to seeing humans. She had perched herself for quite some time in this coffee shop and was used to getting a bird’s eye view of the customers streaming through the door.

But, this customer was different.

He was unlike any human she had seen before--almost other worldly. What caught her attention were his eyes. 

They were the most gentle, caring eyes she had ever seen on a human.

As he strolled up to the counter the man spoke,

I’ll have a cafĂ©’ mocha, please. 

There was nothing odd about this menu choice, but it was his voice! Bella thought it sounded like a bubbling brook!

Bella felt conflicted. Safety of the nest, or satisfy her curiosity and get a closer look at this new customer? She felt something wooing her to perch near this man.

Throwing caution to the wind, she lifted her wings and silently descended from the beam and landed softly on the far back corner of the espresso machine. 

Had her movement been noticed by this man? She was timid, but curious.

As he turned to find an open chair with his cup in hand, the man glimpsed a flutter of movement behind the counter. Bella knew she had been seen, but she was not afraid anymore. 

The man stretched out his scarred, but strong hand and said to Bella,

 Come here, Little One

Bella thought it very peculiar that this man would focus attention on one as small and plain as she, but she flew to his outstretched hand.

After alighting on his finger, he carried her, and the coffee in his other hand and sat down at a table by the window. 

He spoke gently, introducing himself as the Master Grounds Keeper. 

He told her he was the owner of The Daily Grind and that he was also the owner of the cattle on a thousand hills. Bella thought the part about the cattle to be quite strange, but he spoke with care, and with such authority. 

He told her he knew how sad she had been in recent months.

 Bella, he softly spoke, I know about Sam’s backpack and I want to explain it to you.

You see, he said, Sam has been carrying around this pack of hurts on his back ever since he was a small chick. 

The heavier Sam’s pack has become, the more he has wanted to hide.

But, he came to visit me early this morning. I guess he had heard me talking with other folks here in The Daily Grind and felt he could try to trust someone with his pain. 

As Sam continued to share his troubles with me, I lifted his backpack from his back. In return, 

I gave him something that will remain under his wing and close to his heart forever.

He is free from pain now, Bella.


The mysterious and kind man took a sip from his steaming cup.

Finally, Bella put words to her pondering heart and dared to ask,

What is it that you gave him for under his wing?

The Master spoke, It is a token of my love for him that will be with him until the end of time. 

Can I have this token too?, Bella asked with eyes glistening. 

The Master replied, My dear Bella, my token has been with you, under your wing and close to your heart since you were a baby chick. This promise of my love has helped you bear burdens of sorrow, worry and pain for all of these years.

This backpack of your own hurts has kept you from fully recognizing my token of love for you. 

With that said, the Master Grounds Keeper reached down with his scarred, rugged but gentle hand and lifted the heavy burden that had been on Bella’s shoulders for so long. 

Bella instantly felt as light as a feather! She felt free! How could she have not been aware of this backpack on her own shoulders?

Thank you, Bella chirped. 

The Master took one last sip from his mocha and smiled a wide, kind smile.

You are so welcome, my dear Bella. 

As soon as he spoke these words, Bella lifted off of his finger and glided effortlessly toward her nest. There Sam was awaiting her return, eager to share with her his new found freedom from the weight of his own backpack. 

Now both free of their heavy burdens, Sam looked at Bella and said,

Let’s fly.

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"Are not five sparrows sold for two cents? Yet not one of them is forgotten before God.
Luke 12:6

 "The bird also has found a house, And the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, Even Your altars, O Lord of hosts, My King and my God."
Psalm 84:3

 Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest."
Matthew 11:28



“For every beast of the forest is Mine, The cattle on a thousand hills." 

Psalm 50:10



How do you like to unleash your creativity? Is it writing? Drawing? Acting? Other?
I'd love to hear in the comments!


Click on my button to see a list of all 31 Days posts! Thanks for reading!

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