King Krump and the big, big wall

A fable for children

There was once a king who loved gold.

He had gold plates and spoons, gold curtains and cushions, a gold bath with gold taps – even a gold toilet.

He wore a gold wig.

He bolted his name in giant gold letters on the tallest buildings; so everyone could look upon his works and be jealous.

He had more soldiers and tanks and rockets and battleships and bomber planes than all the other kingdoms in the world put together and laid end to end.

He was very rude, and like to squash visitors hands for a long time when he shook them and called people names through megaphones.

But the trouble was that he had bullied people for so long that he could never tell whether anyone actually liked him; or if they smiled at him and told him how wonderful he was because they were scared. He secretly thought that his gang liked his gold more than him.

So he wanted people to be scared of each other. And some people were, and thought that wanting to be like him was the best they could hope for. But because there was actually only room for one person like him in the world- they joined his gang instead and marched and shouted with torches and guns – calling everyone else “losers!”

But the “losers” were many, many more than them. All sorts of people, at home and overseas; and they started to reach out to each other and shouted back. And the shouting got very loud. You could hear it everywhere – all over the kingdom and all over the world.

So, King Krump wanted to build a wall in people’s hearts to keep more and more of the “loser” people out.

He tried to build it with straw – but it blew away when the people breathed.

He tried to build it with ice – but it melted when the people smiled.

He tried to build it with stone – but it fell down when the people danced.

He tried to build it with words – but it was drowned when the people sang.

He tried to build it with fire – but it fizzled out under an avalanche of snowflakes.

He tried to build it high – but the people jumped higher.

He tried to build it deep – but the people dug deeper.

Every time he tried to build his wall, more and more people found each other across bridges that he couldn’t see and that they had never known were there.










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