What are you doing with so many pumpkins? said Blurtso. We’re swapping them, said Pablo, for food and supplies… the cellar is already full. Is Harlan coming tonight? Yes, said Blurtso, he and Alexandra are taking the train. Good, said Pablo. I hope they like pumpkin pie.
What a lovely cabin, said Alex. Yes, said Harlan, it’s very sturdy. I’m glad you like it, said Pablo, Bonny and I are happy you could come. How long have you lived here? said Alex. Seven months, said Bonny. Do you miss the city? said Alex. Boston? said Bonny. No, not really. Concord has all we need. Like what? said Alex. Like paints and canvass, said Bonny. We produce everything else. What do you do for entertainment? said Alex. We sing, said Bonny, or read, or tell stories around the fire. That sounds great, said Harlan. Can we hear a story tonight? Of course, said Bonny, Pablo knows some really scary ones. Scary? said Harlan. Yes, said Bonny, but not too scary… Ditto gets nightmares.
Once upon a time, not long ago, there was a donkey, a giraffe, an elephant, and an insane woodsman.
Hey, said the tourist, you didn’t sign this one. No, said Bonny, I didn’t sign any of them. Why not? said the tourist. Because they don’t belong to me, said Bonny. Who do they belong to? said the tourist. They don’t belong to anyone, said Bonny. What do you mean? said the tourist. Does the snow belong to the clouds? said Bonny. No, said the tourist. Do the flowers belong to the sun? No, said the tourist. Does anyone own the grass in the field? Well, said the tourist, if someone owned the field, they might think they owned the grass. Yes, said Bonny, but they would be wrong.
Why aren’t you painting? said Pablo. I ran out of paint, said Bonny. I guess you’ll have to go to town, said Pablo. Yes, said Bonny.
How much for this one? said the tourist. This one? said Bonny. This one is eight tubes of paint and four canvasses. What? said the tourist. Eight tubes of paint and four canvasses, said Bonny. Don’t you accept cash? No, said Bonny. American Express? No, said Bonny. Where can I get eight tubes of paint and four canvasses? said the tourist. In the Arts and Crafts store around the corner, said Bonny. O.k., said the tourist, I’ll be right back… Hey… what colors? Two Winsor Lemon, said Bonny, two Cadmium Red, three Quinacridone Magenta, and one Ultramarine. French Ultramarine? said the tourist. Bien sûr, said Bonny.
The chickadees are in full throat today, said Blurtso. No, said Pablo, those are blackbirds you hear. Really? said Blurtso. Well… how about that one… now that was a chickadee! No, said Pablo, that was a kingfisher. Really, said Blurtso, a kingfisher? Wow… it sure sounded like a chickadee… hold it… hold it…how about that one… now that was a chickadee! No, said Pablo, that was a red-tailed hawk. A red-tailed hawk? said Blurtso. Hmm, he must have been imitating a chickadee… hold it… hold it… how about that one! That was the most unmistakable chickadee I’ve ever heard! No, said Pablo, that was a duck. Remarkable, said Blurtso. What about that, was that a kingfisher? No, said Pablo. A blackbird? No, said Pablo. A red-tailed hawk? No, said Pablo. A duck? No, said Pablo. A chickadee? No, said Pablo. I give up, said Blurtso, what was it? That, said Pablo, was my stomach growling.