“You look like you’re in agony, dear one.” “Oh, I’m not. I’m just… It’s the next story.”
“I thought you were happy with this arrangement. The chance to take the stage in the square each day… It’s such an honor. And I’ve heard wonderful things.”
“Of course you have! You’re my husband,” she closed her eyes and pinched at the bridge of her long nose. “I do love doing it and I feel the good of it. I just don’t have anything left.”
“Nothing left! You told me that you were born a storyteller and I’ve never doubted that for a moment since we met.”
“Oh, but you know what it is to be tired when a deep place within your mind's worn through. Like all the creative fires has been put to bed in preparation for a night that just may not end.”
“I’m a glass blower, wife. When the fires go out I bid the apprentices to stoke them hotter than ever and I make thick tumblers for the publicans.”
“Ach, you’re no help! And I have to get up on the stage in less than two hours.”
“You are the Rememberer for these people. You hold their chalice and you wield their sword. Only you dare speak all of their dreams and their fears. You know the secrets what makes them proud and what makes them glad they weren’t born to some other savage race - no matter how rich their kings or fierce their warriors.
“Tell them of the goddess you love best,” he said, leaning forward to tuck the stray curls behind her ears. “Tell the women about how she stands tall in battle and how she births a dozen sons without dread. Tell the men about the swell of her breast and the warmth of her mystery. Tell the children that she holds the keys to the fairy realm. And, when you come home, tell me how you’re just like her.”
The storyteller sighed, but as she closed her eyes, it was not with weariness but trust. Trust in the man who held her chalice and called her to take up her own sword. Trust in the stories that guided her and everyone who gathered when she raised up her voice.
Sometimes this storyteller's chalice feels empty... If you'd like to contribute a story to the #365StrongStories project, read the submission guidelines here.