The Little Town That Died


There was a town, once. Sadly it’s not there now, but it used to breathe light, and hope, and life, and laughter. You won’t find it on any map, but it did exist and it was a glorious place – once.

So you’re asking what happened to a place that looked, and smelt, and tasted like a little piece of heaven?

Its disappearance was not so much anyone’s fault, as the fault of nature. Nature or the universe or gods (you choose) set the rules – and the rules say that most folks fit into a big middle piece of ground and that’s where they stay. That’s the kinda glue that holds the whole mess together – at least, some might say that.

But look at it the other way, if you weren’t in the big mess in the middle, then you were special, different, and talented even. Those on one side of the big mess were maybe not as smart or as sociable as the rest – while those at the other side were maybe, eccentric, or full to the brim with just plain living.

And those in the middle, they were the majority and would therefore have the last word on everything – really. The problem is life don’t really live in the middle ‘cause these folks are just the glue. Some folks are born to greatness and some folks are just the sticky stuff – that’s just the way life is.

At the start of the life of this little, of which I speak, there was a lot of getting on together. People just rubbed along and most times that worked. But then one little boy, called Artie decided to paint his mother’s fence something other than white – he painted it pink – cause that’s the kind of colour that made Artie happy.

Well, it wasn’t long before the sticky folks in the middle were up in arms against that sort of thing – because it made them happy to be up against something. Believe it or not, being destructive was their way of being creative. Artie was punished by painting his fence back to its original white and he had to re-paint everyone else’s fences too.

The thing that didn’t strike the sticky folks in the middle was, that it was those on the outside who wrote the books, who painted the pictures, who made the movies that kept them all entertained.

The more they banished colour, they more they banished laughter and hope and music. Sticky folks are usually content folks, and so they don’t get around to being creative (in a good way). They look for the others, the outsiders to entertain them, as long as they know their place, that is.

So slowly but surely, the little town became a study in black and white. And the nonentities took over running the place. They couldn’t create music or plays or movies – so they put on quizzes and that was that as far as entertainment went.

Eventually people found the little town safe but boring and soon each of the families moved on.

Within a year there was nothing left, only Artie and his family. Artie decided to paint one last thing before they hitched up their wagon and got on their way:

“The little town that was killed by the mafia of the mediocre”

Amen to that.


bobby stevenson 2017



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