The Fourteenth Leaf


So Argus has now begun to build a new home for his wife and eight kids. The new one is a pretty young lass with red hair and a voice to match. His kids will be a help to him some day, but that day is not today. I wonder what my boy would be like. Would he lay awake at night and struggle with things he can never know? Or would he be a merry lad, a man who knows what to do? I know what I am but at times I wonder if I could maybe be somebody else some day? And would I want to be? I guess that is exactly the way of thinking a merry lad would never have. The best I can do is to help Argus with the walls. Argus knows me. It is enough.


– Sorren

So now Sorren wants to imagine what it would be like to be someone else. A King perhaps? Of course, maybe Sorren was born a King and was switched at birth by fairies, and that now he is just remembering that he is also a King. Maybe I should imagine that I too could be a King. Perhaps the world needs more Kings and less servants. Is that what Sorren is imagining?

- M

Yet another curt and sarcastic insight from M. By now however, I am no longer surprised. And yet, at the same time, he has completely missed the point of this leaf. I see this leaf completely different than does M. Sorren in fact is defending the goodness and pride one should get from serving others as the Lord commands. Sorren even suggests that our children are born into the honor along with the responsibility of helping their parents. That is a far cry from interpreting his words to suggest that he wonders what it would be like if he were a King and the people had the requisite honor of serving him. When Sorren says that he wonders what it would be like to be someone else, and further, that he doesn’t even know if he would want to be, I, in fact, think that he is showing a rare degree of understanding, and faith in the Lord is part of that understanding.

In our world today, I think one could make a strong argument that everyone wants to be someone else; someone with more money, someone with a more attractive partner, someone with more friends, fame, power, in fact, it could be almost anything at all. The point is that most people would rather change, or be changed in some way, than to stay the same, for the calm and mundane life scares us and taunts us with thoughts of uselessness and irrelevance. We are fascinated and obsessed with the lives of those whom we do not even know and we would love to walk a mile in their shoes. The easier and more opulent our lives become, the greater seems to be our desire to change it, for we do not like to come too close to ourself. Perhaps Sorren is really saying that he is content just the way he is. I think we could learn a lesson from the strange musings of a simple man and his simple mind.