The Magician's Tale

The Magician's Tale

A Story by JohnL
"

Part of my series of modern Travellers'/Canterbury Tales

"

The Magician’s Tale

 

 

No-one saw where the small man came from.  He had sharp features and a long nose, which dripped a bit, as though he had just come in from the cold.  In his hand he carried a lacquered stick, which appeared to have golden stars embossed upon its glistening, black surface.  The watchers were pleased to note that he seemed intent on entering into the spirit of the story telling, for he made to take the floor.  He really looked very cold and was even trembling a little, though whether this was shivering or brought about through some other cause was hard to say.

 

He spoke, and the listeners were surprised to find that the voice with which he addressed them contained a degree of confidence that belied his appearance.

 

“In the manner of the old troubadour,” he began somewhat portentously, “I shall recite to you a poem.”

 

Confident or not, his hands trembled as he eyed the door �" something he did frequently and the bravado seemed to evaporate as he proceeded, while the voice increasingly carried nervous undertones as he addressed what had become a rapt and curious audience:

 

 In error once, a ‘Magic-Man’ did cast

A spell, which sent his wife to outer space.

“There’s money here �" this spell I’ll patent fast;

No more, said he, I’ll see that dreadful face.

To hone his new technique, he found a man

Who said “What! Lose my wife? That would be great!”

The making of his fortune thus began.

Soon, many others shared the women’s fate. 

A sweet release he gave to countless men;

His wealth increased with each successive spell,

’Til, further error brought them back again

And on his head, bipartite anger fell.

 

Now out in space, the man himself rotates

Fleeing, of both sexes, furious mates. 

 

Two women and a man appeared through the door behind him as he finished.  Catching a glimpse of them over his shoulder as the applause for his wit subsided, his face showed instant recognition and panic as he tapped himself on the head with the little stick and vanished in a flash.

© 2010 JohnL


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Reviews

You've always written with great attention to details, clearly describing the characters, adding little extras and, inevitably ,creating a surprise finish. You've not disappointed with this clever tale. Nice touch of cheekiness too!

Truly wishing you'd come back to us again, your friends miss your fiction and of course, the wonderful travel pieces. Sending warm regards, as always.

Posted 9 Years Ago


Oh I did enjoy this little story and the surprise ending..... ha! I should have known.... I love surprise endings..... great job with a small amount of words...... I appreciate short stories that get to the point..... thanks for sharing!!!

Posted 9 Years Ago


nicely done. great use of words, especially the poem he recites.

Posted 9 Years Ago


Love the ending John,

Perfect for the flash fiction piece....

Two women and a man appeared through the door behind him as he finished. Catching a glimpse of them over his shoulder as the applause for his wit subsided, his face showed instant recognition and panic as he tapped himself on the head with the little stick and vanished in a flash.

Mark

Posted 10 Years Ago


clever!

Posted 10 Years Ago


a wonderful tribute to those other tales . . . clever, witty and well-writ

Posted 11 Years Ago



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Added on July 6, 2010
Last Updated on July 6, 2010

Author

JohnL
JohnL

Wirral Peninsula, United Kingdom



About
I live in England, and love the English countryside, the music of Elgar and Holst which describes it so beautifully and the poetry of John Clare, the 'peasant poet' and Gerard Manley Hopkins, which d.. more..

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