This piece is by Nicolas Knight.
The earth laid silent that day, and no one could speak or hear the sounds that once filled the cosmos. The people laid their heads down in sorrow. The rain outside just poured salt in the wound. Though there was a child who knew of the songs of old, and ever since they were gone, there was hope as his heart still gleamed with their beauty and miracles. Though gone, their miracles were so strong in the boy that one day a magic flute appeared, and he found it lying alongside him. Filled with much happiness by this, he went to the masses and played a song they all could hear, and then he heard a scream. A bird screamed; its cry was so loud that it broke all the silence and filled the earth with the sounds of the universe. The universe was outraged and asked the world, “didn’t you learn anything this taught you?” The bird then landed and was sad. The boy asked the bird why he was sad, and the bird replied, “The earth was so proud that it took the sounds for granted, and when the universe took them away, Somebody created me to keep the balance.”
The bird then asked the universe if it was satisfied, to which it replied, “no.” And then it flew off again. The boy talked to the people and told them that they had taken the sounds from themselves, to which all of them replied, “no.” He picked up his flute and started to think. He thought upon it hard, as hard as he could think, and he decided to play one last song. “For the skies up above us! For the ones that are around us, let us all come together and find a heart so that the universe may never take the sounds away again!” Said the child. But they all heard the beauty of the flute and its otherworldly sounds and took it for granted, and the boy’s words and all he had to say until finally, the storm outside broke into more rain and thunder and wind. Tornados and hail came down, and the people cried out to have the boy save them. The tornados picked the boy up, and he whirled round and round inside one as he cried out, “NO!” Something lifted him into the clouds to where the people could not be saved.
There, hours later, he opened his eyes and saw the bird sitting there. “Why are people this way?” Asked the bird. The boy blinked a few times and then replied, “with every war, there are borders and walls.” “They all need to accept one another and come together to reach the end of all this!” “So, how do you propose we do that?” Said the bird. “They need a leader.” Said the boy. “Will you help me?” “There hasn’t been a day that’s passed where I haven’t thought about that.” Said the bird. “Well, if you won’t do it, then who will?” Replied the boy. “Oh, alright, fine.” Agreed the bird. “What do we do?” “We sing the song with a different tune until they all hear it the way they need to!” Said the boy. And off they went to the earth below them to sing and play the songs of the universe, but this time on the mission of making sure they would stay. They sat there for hours singing and playing songs until finally, one man stopped and asked himself why everyone ignored them.
“I’ll help!” Said the man. He started dancing and singing, and with someone finally listening to them, the whole town began to join in. They fought the storms with the music and dancing and kept going until they all died down. “Keep going.” Said the boy. “Until the whole world can hear!” Then suddenly, he heard a scream. He looked to the bird on his left and saw that it was not him but an opposite bird. It would have seemed the bird was created by something to keep balance, and now that the people had lifted the curse of their pride, another bird was generated to oppose him. Large booms in the sky like thunder and explosions and cries thundered and roared through the world that caused great distress within the people. The opposite bird cried, “I am pride. I am your worst dreams incarnate and bound to one single will! The will of the people, and they want to be proud!” The boy played his flute and cried out, “You are the division between all of us and the people, and they do not need you without balance! Begone!” He remembered the sounds inside of him and the people’s voice without this curse, and he played his flute as it had never been played before.
“Don’t be proud!” Said the good bird. “Learn to live with pride and open your hearts! The greatest of us are humble, not vain!” The earth then felt familiar, and they regretted their ways, and the bird thought about this for quite some time while fighting the bird. The universe roared and battled the opposite bird as it saw nothing but its curse, and it was almost impossible to stop. And the bird then thought, “The boy is humble.” He dove down to the earth from the clouds and told the boy to change the tune again, and then all could hear the most beautiful sound of the child’s soul speaking to them. The pure, deserving, unrelenting, but humble child then fought the opposite bird, and he exploded into dust. The universe had realized its fault, apologized, and vowed never to retake the sounds. They all cheered and decided to celebrate the end, so they started to have magnificent dance festivals and more music and singing all around the world.