The Two Brothers

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The Two Brothers

Post by Saint Vincent's School on Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:22 pm

The Two Brothers

Once upon a time two brothers who lived on adjoining farms fell into
conflict. It was the first serious rift in 40 years of farming side by
side, sharing machinery, and trading labor and goods as needed without
a hitch.

Then the long collaboration fell apart. It began with a small
misunderstanding and it grew into a major difference, and finally it
exploded into an exchange of bitter words followed by weeks of silence.

One morning there was a knock on John's door. He opened it to find a
man with a carpenter's toolbox. "I'm looking for a few days work" he
said. "Perhaps you would have a few small jobs here and there I could
help with? Could I help you?"

"Yes," said the older brother. "I do have a job for you. Look across
the creek at that farm. That's my neighbor, in fact, it's my younger
brother. Last week there was a meadow between us and he took his
bulldozer to the river levee and now there is a creek between us. Well,
he may have done this to spite me, but I'll go him one better. See that
pile of lumber by the barn? I want you to build me a fence--an 8-foot
fence--so I won't need to see his place or his face anymore."

The carpenter said, "I think I understand the situation. Show me the
nails and the post hole digger and I'll be able to do a job that
pleases you."

The older brother had to go to town, so he helped the carpenter get the
materials ready and then he was off for the day. The carpenter worked
hard all that day measuring, sawing, nailing.

About sunset when the farmer returned, the carpenter had just finished
his job. The farmer's eyes opened wide, his jaw dropped. There was no
fence there at all. It was a bridge--a bridge stretching from one side
of the creek to the other! A fine piece of work handrails and all--and
the neighbor, his younger brother, was coming across, his hand
outstretched.

"You are quite a fellow to build this bridge after all I've said and
done." The two brothers stood at each end of the bridge, and then they
met in the middle, taking each other's hand. They turned to see the
carpenter hoist his toolbox on his shoulder.

"No, wait! Stay a few days. I've a lot of other projects for you," said the older brother.
"I'd love to stay on," the carpenter said, "but, I have many more bridges to build."


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