Children’s Story for March 28, 2001

Two Marbles

© Terrell Neuage 1991 Victor Harbor South Australia

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Leigh Neuage (July 6 1983 - August 16 2003) --

The Magic Mansion  Latest story >>>The Magic Mansion (http://neuage.org/MM/ Maggie and Mabel's Magic Mansion will take them wherever they wish to go. The house used for this story is a model made by my father-in-law after visiting our house in Round Lake, New York and upon return to Australia he built this model based on his memory of our house. The page for this house is at http://neuage.org/house/ As of October 2015 there are three chapters and an introduction to these adventures.

 

The two marbles were rolling down a long long hill in the small resort town of Victor Harbor in South Australia.  One of the marbles was blue with black and gold specks.  It was an old marble and had travelled the world.

 

Thirty-five years earlier the marble had been purchased from a shop in a small town in Upstate New York for one-cent.  Terry, the boy why had bought the marble liked it very much.

 

On that day, thirty-five years earlier, Terry took it to his friend, Randy’s house to show him.  When he told his friend that he had a new marble, Randy suggested that they should have a game of marbles – not to play for keeps, but just to see how well the new marble rolled.

 

Terry took his new blue marble with black and gold specks on it, sat down on the living room floor and showed it to Randy.

 

This is the one I just bought”.  Terry said.

 

Randy looked at the marble and agreed it was a great looking marble. 

 

The two friends decided to roll their marbles to see who could make theirs stop closest to a sofa on the other side of the room.  Terry, with the new blue marble with black and gold specks rolled first. It stopped one Terry’s finger width away from the leg of the sofa.

 

“That is a real good roll,”  said Randy.

 

He then rolled his marble.  It was solid green.                     It rolled across the living room floor, past his father’s big easy chair, past the television, past a rocking chair, and past the nose of the puppy, the family dog. 

  The green marble stopped right next to the new blue marble with black and gold specks on it.

 

I think it is a tie,”  said the boys at the same time.

 

“Time for lunch,” a voice called out from somewhere to the left of where they were playing and they sat down to eat a couple of sandwiches that Randy’s father had prepared for lunch.

 

After lunch they went to the oval to join in a game of baseball with the other children of Clifton Park.

 

Later that day in the house where the boys had been playing marbles the living room was being cleaned.  Whilst vacuuming, the two marbles were sucked up.  The contents of the cleaner were emptied into a bag and the bag was put in with other trash and taken out to the curb to be collected on trash day.

 

The two boys forgot all about the marbles for several weeks.  When they did think of them again they looked everywhere but were unable to find them.  Neither of the boy’s fathers could recall seeing them at either house which was a bit unusual as both boy’s fathers were very tidy housecleaners and always knew where everything in their homes was.

 

The children remained friends and when they grew up they visited each other every seven years, even though one lived in Australia and the other in the United States.

 

Meanwhile, the marbles were on their way around the world.

 

The trash, including the bag with the marbles inside was loaded onto the back of a pickup truck and taken to the country dump on Thursday.  On the way to the dump the truck hit a hole in the road making it bounce.  The bag of trash with the marbles in it jumped onto the side of the road and burst open.  The driver of the truck stopped and went back and picked up all the trash she saw.  But she didn’t see the two marbles which rolled to the edge of the road.

 

The marbles sat along the side of the road for the rest of the summer, through the fall and half way through the cold snowy New York winter.

 

One day in the midst of December, twelve days before Christmas, there was a very big snow storm.  There was more than a foot of snow which fell in one day. Trucks with huge ploughs came along.  The ploughs pushed everything in their way to the side of the road.  Through the dark night the lights of the truck could be seen for many miles ahead.  Sometime after mid-night the trucks went past the two boy’s house where they had been sound asleep shortly before.  Both boys woke as the trucks went past.  They heard the sounds of the ploughs scrapping along the country road.

 

Terry went to his window.  He could see across the road the old farm house that Randy lived in and saw him in the window looking toward the road below too. When they saw the other looking out the window they waved to one another.  The lights of the trucks pierced the full-moon’s night’s coldness and the two boys could see the same sight.  It was still snowing.  Big white flakes dropped lazily to the ground.  A few snowflakes stuck to the window.

 

The trucks were moving quite slowly.  Millions of sparks flew onto the side of the road where the ploughs scrapped.  The two marbles that had fallen on the road the summer before were tossed into the air by the first snowplough.  The boys, looking out their windows, thought they could see the two marbles amongst he falling snowflakes.  Each went back to bed and fell asleep wondering if they really saw the two marbles that they had been playing with.

 

The two marbles that had been tossed into the air came back down on the road in front of the plough that followed the first truck.  The marbles were pushed along the road bouncing up and down for many many miles.  Somewhere, far out in the country the two snow ploughs came to a bridge.  The marbles fell over the side of the bridge and bounced on the frozen river below.

 

Morning next was clear.  The sun shown brightly over a snow blanketed countryside.  Over the river flew two seagulls looking for food.  They saw the two marbles reflecting the sun and they swooped down and picked them up and flew off.  The birds landed on a railroad car that was part of a long freight train headed for a seaport not far away.  The birds dropped the marbles onto a freight train carriage that had a huge box on it. The box was filled with bottles of Vermont Maple Syrup.

 

At the busy seaport

cranes picked up box after box of freight

from off of the railcars and set them onto a cargo ship

that was headed for Australia, far far away.

The ship took three months to get to its destination.

In Sydney a crane lifted the boxes of freight off of the ship and onto railroad cars.  The marbles on the box filled with bottles of Vermont Maple Syrup had settled into a corner and were still in place after the train left Sydney Harbour.

 

The train travelled through New South Wales, Victoria, and on into South Australia.  In South Australia the box filled with bottles of Vermont Maple Syrup and the two marbles was unloaded and transferred to a truck and driven to a resort town by the sea.  There the box was lifted to the roof of a four story building.  The box was pulled apart and emptied.  The two marbles fell off of the box and rolled to the edge of the roof.  They stayed there for the next thirty-five years.

 

One day the building where the two marbles had sat for so long was being torn down to make room for a new and larger building.  As the building fell the two marbles became dislodged.  They fell to the street four stories below and began rolling down a very long hill.  They rolled past two street crossings and were almost to the third street, when…

 

It was warm South Australian spring day.  The two men were talking busily about their many activities.  The man who once long ago owned the blue marble with the black and gold specks on it lived with his two children in Victor Harbor, South Australia.  His friend, Randy, who once lived across the road from when they were children and had owned the green marble was visiting him.

 

They were talking about their childhood in Clifton Park, the small country town in Upstate New York where they once lived.  Just as they both remembered the day they played marbles then lost them thirty-five years earlier, the two marbles that they had lost rolled past them.  The two men picked them up and said at the same time. “Impossible”.

 

They looked at the marbles that they had had many years ago.  They couldn’t be possible be the same marbles they said.  But they were.  Here on the other side of the world and thirty-five years later.

 

Terry gave the blue marble with the black and gold specks on it to his oldest son, Sacha and the green marble which had belonged to Randy he gave to Leigh.  He told them that they were the marbles he and Randy had played with when they were kids.

 

But the kids just looked at their dad then at Randy and said;

Sure dad!”

 

 

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Today working on picture poem links starting around "better" (June 14, 2014 ). Picture poems are the digital format of work I did as a street artist in New Orleans in the 1970s, as well as New York City, Honolulu, San Francisco and Adelaide South Australia.

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