Sto­ry­time: Koby’s Magic Crys­tal

Some­times it takes dras­tic mea­sures to get peo­ple’s at­ten­tion!

More of Our Canada - - Contents - By Gisela Wold­enga, Co­quit­lam, B. C.

When his river home be­comes pol­luted, a clever wa­ter-sprite teaches the lo­cal towns­folk a valu­able les­son.

Once upon a time, there lived a wa­ter­sprite named Koby who was very an­gry. With his small green feet, he jumped up and down on the bot­tom of the river wav­ing his thin arms in de­spair. Be­ing a wa­ter­sprite, he liked his river clean, sparkling and full of fish. “Look at the garbage ev­ery­where!” he cried and the ridge of fins along his back quiv­ered. Bassy, his old fish friend, wig­gled his tail fin. He’d never seen Koby so up­set. But Koby was right. Peo­ple were throw­ing bot­tles, pa­per cups and even tires into the river. Bassy had scars from scrap­ing over some­thing sharp.

“This calls for strong mea­sures,” de­clared Koby. He kicked a small sand pile that made the wa­ter cloudy and Bassy sneeze. Koby took a deep breath to calm down. “Bassy, I need to talk to a hu­man about chang­ing all this.” Bassy gur­gled and laughed. “Peo­ple don’t talk to wa­ter­sprites. They can’t see them.” But Koby in­sisted. “The mayor’s daugh­ter can. She comes here of­ten and I talk to her. I can make her un­der­stand that some­one has to clean up this river.”

When the girl came down to the wa­ter’s edge the next day, she was sur­prised to find Koby so an­gry. She lis­tened care­fully when he told her how dirty the river had be­come. She then ran to her teacher and told her about the strange meet­ing. “Tsk, tsk,” the teacher scolded and wagged a fin­ger at her. “It’s not nice to make up sto­ries about wa­ter­sprites. They only ex­ist in fairy tales.” Even the girl’s mother thought she had a fever and put her to bed. No­body be­lieved her.

Af­ter sev­eral more plans were tried and failed, Koby de­cided there was one more thing he could do—use his magic crys­tal to dry up the river. Then the towns­peo­ple would see the garbage on the bot­tom and do some­thing about it. He went into his un­der­wa­ter cave and brought out his magic crys­tal. He held it up to the sun. It shim­mered and glit­tered and threw streams of colour over the river. Koby closed his eyes and chanted, “Wa­ter flow, get­ting low, down, down, down you go!” The river grew still and slowly the wa­ter level be­gan to drop. Koby stashed the magic crys­tal in its pouch and, to­gether with Bassy, swam off to a nearby pond.

The vil­lagers were puz­zled to see the wa­ter in the river drop un­til the bot­tom was vis­i­ble. The mayor’s daugh­ter pointed to the rust­ing, de­cay­ing waste and said, “I told you, the river is chok­ing. We have to clean it up like Koby told us to.”

The mayor scratched his head. He still couldn’t be­lieve his daugh­ter could see and talk to a wa­ter­sprite. But he or­dered trucks to scoop up all the garbage and de­posit it in proper dumps.

The teacher was sorry she hadn’t be­lieved the girl and said, “Let’s take bet­ter care of na­ture and keep a sharp eye out for lit­ter. Your wa­ter­sprite has been a great help.”

Koby watched from afar and danced with de­light. That night, he held his crys­tal up to the moon­light. Again he chanted, “Wa­ter rise, wa­ter flow, up, up, up you go!” Slowly, the wa­ter trick­led back and within a few days it was clean and clear. Bassy came swim­ming back and Koby sighed con­tent­edly as he splashed around.

The mayor’s daugh­ter vis­ited Koby of­ten, happy to have such a spe­cial friend, and the vil­lagers com­mented that the waves in the river had a mag­i­cal light and sparkle to them ever since they cleaned up the river. ■

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.