"Sit down beside me, I'll tell you a story,
Of beautiful maidens, and men who are bold.
The kind of a story to make you remember,
the wonder of childhood before you grew old. "
Mark W. Lewis
I was attending the Summer Solstice Folk Music & Story Telling festival in Calabasas CA. I had gone to spend some time hanging out with my friend Bill Howard, hear some great story tellers and take a few workshops. Bill had encouraged me to join in the story swap, sort of a round robin, where each person get up a tells a 5 to 10 minute tale.
I was not a story teller but loved and appreciated the art and hoped to improve my skills.
I hadn't planned anything, so I fell back on a story I remembered from my childhood. It told of a young lad in Ireland who thinks he has gotten the best of a leprechaun only to have his own cleverness used against him.
I was just getting started, when who should walk in and sit in the back row but Mark Lewis!
Imagine for a moment what that was like?
I couldn't breath,
I couldn't see,
I was not sure I could keep going.
Mark just smiled, that smile that said 'it's all good! You've got this!'
I found new things in that story I never knew were there.
I did not tell that story; that story told me!
Afterwords, Mark approached me to say how much he enjoyed it and we talked for a long while.
Turned out we had watched each other's performances but never had the chance to talk.
I made a friend that day.
I shall miss him always.