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Legend Of The Guitar Adapted by William Beauvais

February 23, 2016

“…sometimes being lost, if there is such a thing, is the sweetest place to be…” Linda Hogan

A long, long time ago, in western coast of Spain lived a man and his daughter. The father was well known as a carpenter, and the elegant beauty of their home showed his skill to all. When looking at this house, one’s eyes were drawn to the window frames adorned with carved roses.

Citra was the daughter’s name, and she sang like no one had ever sung before. When she sang everyone stopped to listen, even the birds would go silent and listen. When Citra sang, the sick were made well, and folk from the neighbouring villages would ask her to sing whenever people needed a healing touch.

One stormy night, as Citra and her father were enjoying a cup of tea together, they heard some scratching sounds. They both stopped to listen, and heard feeble knocks on the door of their house! Opening the door, they saw a weak, exhausted old woman dripping iimagesn their doorway. In tattered clothing, the old woman’s teeth were chattering as she leaned against the house. Citra invited her in and seated her by the fire to warm her. They brought some warm clothing and a blanket for the woman, who was invited to share the evening meal.

In the morning, when the old woman recovered, she told Citra that she lived in a northern village on the mountain in a province named Asturias. She had a very, very sick granddaughter with an unknown disease. The doctors unable to treat it, told the old woman of a girl in a far away village who had a healing voice. “So that is why I, an old woman have walked all this way – for six weeks – to see you, Citra, and to beg you to save my granddaughter”. The old woman started to tell Citra about her granddaughter, and with each tale, Citra began to feel as if she knew the dying child. Her desire to help the girl grew as the stories continued.

Citra told her father that she must try to save the old woman’s granddaughter. The father arranged for two of his best friends to go with Citra, and after few weeks walking northward, they reached the mountain village in Asturias. Citra saw the granddaughter and, as soon as she was able, she began to sing, as beautifully as she was able. She sang so beautifully that not only had the birds stopped to listen, but the animals too! For two days the whole village was silent except for the exquisite voice of Citra. She sang and sang, and at the end of the second day of singing, the girl opened her eyes, and was cured.

Citra and her two companions were welcomed, and given a feast by the wholevillage. A goat was brought in for roasting, and the village was quite merry throughout the night. When Citra and her companions recovered, it was time to gather supplies for the long trip home. Citra bid farewell to her new friends, and graciously accepted their gifts.

On the way back, through the snowy mountains, an avalanche buried the group. Miraculously, some hunters passed hours after the avalanche and found Citra buried and almost freezing to death. They rescued her, and being kindly men, brought her back home to her father.

Citra recovered, but for the rest of her life had a sore throat and was never able to sing again. Her father, moved by a need to remember the beauty of his daughter’s voice, created an instrument that was shaped like a woman. With his fine carpentry skills, imgreshe built an instrument out of the finest woods he could find. When Citra was given it, she started to play, and play, and play. People from all over Spain came to see this astonishing instrument. When she played, she played music like no one had ever heard before. When she played, every one would stop and listen, even the birds would stop chirping and listen. Citra’s playing had the same magical power of healing as her singing, and folk from the neighbouring villages would ask her to play whenever people needed a healing touch.

The name Citra has traveled all over the world and the instruments that are like it are named after her: the Sitar from India and the kytharos from Greece are in this family. In Italy, the instrument was named Chitarra, a name also derived from Citra. In some places, the letter “C” was written as “G” and became Gitara and finally, Guitar.

Nasrudin was chatting with the Sultan’s courtiers when they asked why he had not married.

“Well you see,” he said, “as a young man I was looking for the perfect wife. I travelled through many lands and in China I met a beautiful dancer, who was joyful but lacked a sense of the spiritual. My journey continued to Egypt where I met a princess who was beautiful and wise, but we had much difficulty communicating with each other. After more searching, in India I found a woman who was beautiful and wise. Her charm captured the hearts of everybody she met a woman who would be the perfect wife.”

Nasrudin stopped long enough at this point for one of the courtiers to ask: “What happened?”

“Oh well,” said Nasrudin, “she was waiting for the perfect husband.”

 

 

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From → Reflections

2 Comments
  1. What a moving story. Thank you William

  2. so glad you liked it alan…

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