The Green Man

Long ago, in the mists of prehistoric Eurasia, the Green Man lived among the trees and leaves. He loved those whose hearts were glad, and stayed near them. He especially delighted in children, who were able to see him easily, while those who had given up that sight had to call out his name at special times for him to appear to them. But he was always there, just the same. For many centuries, the Green Man lived alongside the people in peace and happiness. He would often appear during festival times; their gay music and dancing he could not resist. During these times he would grant favors to those he found special. Most often these were a prosperous harvest and a large family to bring it in. Many travelers of lonely roads tell of meeting the Green Man. Being weary, they would stop to rest. Suddenly one of them would notice an odd tree or shape among the branches. Once seen, the Green Man would come forward and bow deeply to the travelers. All who were in his presence felt gladness. He would refresh them with his soothing branches and before they knew it, they were at their destination! There are countless tales of the miraculous deeds of the Green Man. But not one mentions what ultimately became of him. During the middle ages, churches carved images of his face into their buildings. He was more and more often seen by the people as an evil thing, something that did not fit into their daily lives. Still, during many ceremonies he was named. He did not come often. The times he did come, he was of lesser countenance than described by the grandfathers. He had a wilting, dying look, which was trying to look upon. Those who still took counsel with him returned mad, more often than not.

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