Story without a happy ending
Sad and true
A sad ending is an ending of the plot of a story, true or fiction, in which everything turns out for the best for some and tragically for others whether they deserve it or not, with or without a villain.
“Micaela O’Herlihy and her Billy
Arlington Art Examiner
A goat tale you have not heard before
(Based on a true story from a confession on Facebook from a goat farmer in Wisconsin)
Throughout the history of humankind there have been stories in which goats were to have become the subject. Why is this case true?
After all, a goat is a domesticated bovid like a cloven-footed cow only shorter. It eats and digests like cows, but unlike cattle, goats sometimes get the blame. Is it from their being more assertive in personality?
Billy goats gruff
Most goat stories involve three Billie’s, usually brothers, though sometimes grandfather, father, and son meet at ariver crossing controlled by a monstrous troll. The Billies arrive in three sizes, large, medium, and small.
The hungry monstrous troll has a large appetite and confronts the Billies with a strategy. Let the smaller cross first to give the largest a sense of courage and safety, and then devour the largest goat.
Yet, goats are smart too. The largest goat lets the smaller cross first. When they have passed safely, the largest old goat buts the monster away with all his might and all the Billies assemble in joy on the other side.
“Anna Scott: I can't believe you have that picture on your wall.
William: You like Chagall?
Anna Scott: I do. It feels like how being in love should be. Floating through a dark blue sky.
William: With a goat playing the violin.
Anna Scott: Yes - happiness isn't happiness without a violin-playing goat.”[i]
Billy goat was born in Wisconsin and lived at Long Arm Farm operated by Micaela O’Herlihy and husband and “kids.” He felt rather fortunate living in these wide open spaces where the grass grows fine and where he is the master of the herd.
Billy likes the ladies and they are all well fed and cared for. The only price they pay is giving up some milk so Micaela can make cheese and such.
Most days, Billy just keeps watch over his family for which he has affinity with the Mormons. Nothing much happens except when Micaela and her family are not around. Sometimes visitors come and jump the fence. They are a deer family from the local grove who enjoy the goats’ little space, salt lick, and special feed.
They know how to behave and don’t bother Billy or the ladies one bit.
Then, some other animals come around too, raccoons, opossums, and skunks. The raccoons are a bothersome group because they seem to enjoy getting things stirred up. If the ladies protest, Billy gets involved and chases them out of there.
One of Billy’s favorite things to do besides eating anything and everything is to scratch his back on the fence.
In recent weeks, the ladies may have noticed that Billy was losing some of his gruff. He acted poorly and listless at times.
Still, he tried to put up a good front and tended to his responsibility.
He thought to himself that he had probably caught a bug of some sort and would get over it. As he tried to fight off the bug, the ladies were talking among themselves about the possibility that Billy might have coodies.
Billy doesn’t like roomer mongering among the ladies on the other side of the yard, and prefers to let his mind wander about fine memories of his time at Long Arm.
Farmer Micaela had to intervene and get Billy a checkup. As a result the Vet said Billy was sick and contagious and it would be best for him to depart.
With much courage, Micaela took Billy to a quiet spot, had some kind words, maybe a goat prayer of some kind, and with a shot it was over.
Now, the ladies are out there without a Billy to look over them. But, on this silent winter Wisconsin night with the moon flying high in the sky, one can hear the sound of a violin playing and see Billy up there in the clouds.