There once was a land very different from the present
Where a town was housed full of people most unpleasant
For they were snobbish and stuffy, quite opposed to change,
But they prided themselves for something quite strange.
What made the townsfolk different from those of other lots
Was that their bodies, from head to toe, were adorned with spots.
They knew not how or why these spots came about,
Only that spots meant greatness without a doubt.
To be covered in spots was a sign of pure beauty
And gaining more and more meant they were doing their duty.
Never had they seen a person spotless and bare
Until the day the newcomer arrived and gave them all quite a scare.
Down from the hills came Nellie Beth Kynde,
With skin milky white and not one blemish to find,
And though she came in peace, the townsfolk saw her as a threat
For her spotless skin started quite the upset.
They shouted and mocked and called Nellie a witch
Turning away when she approached them, repulsed of her glitch.
And while they scorned her, more spots did they gain
So from that moment on, to get more spots meant giving Nellie pain.
But Nellie never fretted over their rudeness and forgave them their spite
For better things await those who, with Grace, endure their plight.
Yet her gentleness worried the townsfolk, especially the mayor
Who contrived a plot to, far from his town, convey her.
He declared, ‘Though we’ve gotten more spots since she came,
‘No longer can we tolerate the vile presence of the spotless dame.
‘Away I shall send her into the Forest of Despair,
‘Where no one can return who has no protective spots to bear.’
And the townsfolk, who loved order, agreed
To rid of Nellie’s presence who, upon their town, was like a weed.
The next day arrived, and into the Forest Nellie was banished
And the townspeople rejoiced, for fear of revolution vanished.
Nellie bore her burden with the grace of a queen
Placing her faith in Better Things that would save her from the obscene.
Onward into the Forest she walked, when she came upon a bog
Where sat a shadowy figure surrounded by snakes amidst a heavy fog.
As Nellie approached, the creature spoke with a hiss,
‘Spotless creatures like you shan’t live in these parts, little miss.
‘Come, I and my serpents will give you spots made of dirt
‘So you can return to the village and live out your days unhurt.’
Nellie thought this over, but replied without delay,
‘You’re very kind to offer, but my spots shall wash away.
‘I shall die in my own skin,’ she replied from her heart.
And heading back into the forest, from the stranger she did part.
With faith most strong, Nellie went further into the trees
Until she spotted another stranger swinging a sword with great ease.
His shield bearing a lion and a bear, the fighter eyed her with a glare,
Growling, ‘No spots, no blemishes – girl, you surely are rare.
‘They say skin like yours means you’re a gift from above.
‘So fight me, blessed girl, to see what you’re truly made of.’
A smile still present, Nellie answered most kindly,
‘Fighting, sir, is for those who live blindly.
‘I would not engage, even if I was blessed,
‘For gifts from Above should never be put to the test.’
Leaving the angry fighter, onward Nellie trekked
Her mind fully aware and her faith unwrecked.
Deeper and darker the old Forest grew
Full of leafy traps and viney obstacles Nellie had to trudge through.
And just when she thought she had finally reached the end,
Another person did from the depths descend.
This one, unlike the others, appeared to Nellie almost kind,
All clad in black and without a spot she could find.
He greeted her as she came in a voice most refined,
‘I’ve been awaiting you, Miss Nellie Beth Kynde.’
‘Your mind, like your skin, is composed and unstained.
‘Your greatness surely should not be wasted or chained.
‘Submit to me, and you will rule over all,
‘For under your reign and riches, no spotted ones on this land will fall.’
After this proposal, the stranger offered pieces of silver by the many
But Nellie shook her head and said she did not want any.
‘I serve no man,’ she replied, ‘and your offerings I do not need.
‘For I know what’s beneath the spotted ones, and I much prefer them to greed.’
Walking past the black stranger, Nellie continued on her way
When a short time later, she was met by a beautiful display.
She emerged from the trees and was greeted by a white gate
And by then she knew her trials were over, for happiness must surely await.
While inspecting the scene, a Being in a white robe appeared
With a gentile face and laughing eyes, and a long, flowing white beard.
‘Welcome, Nellie,’ He sang, ‘I’m glad you finally came.
‘So I could commend you on your faith and trust that never put me to shame.
‘You’ve been faced with many hardships, but to them you never complied.
‘To your enemies you showed grace and love and cast doubt and hate aside.
‘For that I welcome you to Paradise, and grant you entry through these gates
‘While all the others shall remain outside and endure their harsh fate.’
And looking round the gates, Nellie saw all that mocked her
From the bog creature and the fighter, to the townsfolk and the mayor.
In agony they sat with rags, trying to rub their spots away.
Turning to the Being she asked, ‘Why can’t they come with me, pray?’
‘Their spits,’ the Bearded One said, ‘are stains upon their souls.
‘Forever must they wash them away, for a clean spirit is this gate’s toll.
‘Your soul, like your skin, is completely blemish-free,
‘So while they atone out here, you may live in Bliss with me.’
Nellie stared at all the people, scrubbing away in gloom
As the spots still protruded on their skin, all fully aware of their doom.
With a gulp, Nellie faced the Being with her toughest decision yet,
‘Your offer is pleasing, but I must decline with regret.
‘I must be where I am needed, where my love is put to use.
‘And where better will I be of aid than where filthy souls profuse?
‘I will enter your Realm when we all can come as one.
‘Until then, my Kind Benefactor, I’m afraid our conversation is done.’
With a smile, the Being watched as Nellie picked up a towel,
Walked to the town mayor, and helped him make his skin and soul less foul.