tagNon-EroticRhubarb & Horseshit

Rhubarb & Horseshit


He had been standing at the bottom of the croft for years, a silent watcher of the tides; a startling vision in long johns and a second hand kilt, topped by a shocking pink shell-suit jacket; a nasty reminder of the diabolical eighties fashion trends. Rory was a friend to the animals, none were afraid of his radical dress-sense, or his slightly uneven facial features. His long straggly hair offered protection for birds, and his belly, a warm safe place for the creatures that were brave enough to venture underneath his kilt.

Rory felt as if he had been forgotten, the crofter had long since given up on working the land so had no further use for his services; but still he hadn't come near, save for the occasional glance as he jumped the fence and walked down the short incline to the beach. The land that had once been used for growing potatoes and turnips was left fallow, wandered now by two welsh mountain ponies that spared him no more than a snort and a flick of the tail as they went about their business.

Wintertime passed and the gales blew him back and forth, but still he held fast, despite his kilt dropping a few inches short of indecently exposing what the crofter had blessed him with. Rory held his breath during the winter, the most damaging of seasons and released it slowly in the spring. He could hear the birds sing once more, but that might have something to do with losing the scraps of fleece the birds had collected for the nests they had created inside his head. Field mice twisted and stretched inside his belly, and his gaily-coloured kilt swung happily in the breeze once more. The ponies were let out in the field for longer during the day, their hooves creating a quagmire of the boggy land, and they started to pay him more attention than they ever had before.

Lulled by the soothing sounds of the sea, he was often in a daydream world as the ponies galloped towards him, splattering his long john-covered legs in mud and horseshit. It was a game for them, a simple amusement and he rose above it, blessing the fact that he had lost his nose in his first winter at the bottom of the croft; he had never been partial to the smell of horseshit anyway. Little by little, it got warmer and for the first time in years he saw the beginnings of new growth in the field and round about the stake that rose up from the earth, straight up his arse and through the neck of his shell suit jacket. Huge red and green stalks, with wide crinkly leaves; a little forest round about his legs that grew higher as the sun shone.

Suddenly the ponies stopped charging at him, and the crofter himself took note, stopping from time to time to brush his hands over the massive leaves. One day, the crofter came, but he wasn't alone, this time he brought his wife, a terrifying looking woman, whose face reminded him of the pony's backsides as they cantered away from him. As the crofter spread his arms wide, her face split into a Cheshire cat smile, displaying at least three good teeth and miles of gum. Her two meaty hands dived into the butchers' apron, tied about her considerable girth. He would have gulped if he had been able to when she about-faced and squatted down on the ground to cut some of the long stalks down. Before they left, the crofter set about pushing back in the straw that had fallen to the ground, hitching up the listing kilt, and flicking some of the dried lumps of horseshit from the front of the pink monstrosity.

Every week they came back, gathering more of the little forest, until once again the breeze whispered about his legs. This was the sign the ponies had been waiting for, the malicious creatures that they were, but this time they hovered about, nibbling at the straw they could sink their teeth into, butting their heads and backsides at the stake, loosening it so badly that he felt himself listing drunkenly to the side. Since the forest was now gone, the crofter showed no more interest, so he found himself at the mercy of the ponies, and there was no kindness in their actions. Little by little as the weeks passed, he found himself getting closer to the ground, closer to the steaming piles of horseshit. Inches from doom; when it seemed as if all hope had faded, he saw the first shoots of a new forest emerging from the sea of shit; the crofter noticed this too and lifted him up, pushing the stake back into the ground firmly, before laying a gentle hand on his shoulder.

"You see Rory, it's like this, when life hands you a pile of shit... you can either wallow in it, or grow rhubarb."

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