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The little flute that nobody wanted

Updated on May 24, 2012

A lovely example

The delicate carved bird goes above the fingering holes by the ties (This flute was made by Grazing Horse)
The delicate carved bird goes above the fingering holes by the ties (This flute was made by Grazing Horse) | Source

An Indian legend

This story is based on a legend that my husband, a Native American of Cherokee descent, heard as a child. He builds Native American flutes and teaches people how to play them. He wanted to tell the story to his flute students, but he couldn’t remember all the details, so he recreated the story with a modern twist and makes no pretense that it is the original. Although he can’t take credit for the legend, he can take credit for his version. I am merely the editor, but I thought it was lovely enough to share.



This is a story about a flute, a boy, and a girl. There was a little flute that nobody wanted because it was a high G flute and it was only good for birdcalls. The flute maker rejected it and gave it away. He gave it to an Indian flute player, and because it was a gift, the flute player couldn’t reject it. The flute player worked with it anyway, and with time, he and the spirit of the flute became one.

Later a little girl about seven years of age was in coma in a nearby hospital. She had been that way for over two months. The doctors feared she would never awaken and were ready to give up on her. Her mother was bereft.

A small boy from the nearby reservation, also a patient in the hospital, saw the mother’s sadness. “Get someone to play a flute for her,” he said. “They can help her, the flute can help,” he cried. He kept urging the mother of the child to get a flute player to play for her. His words went unheeded, and he became more and more persistent as time went on because he didn’t want the little girl to die.

Finally, the mother in desperation agreed to do as he asked. “I know it can’t hurt her,” she said. “I’ll try anything for her.” The flute player was called in and arrived with the little flute that nobody wanted. He knelt down by the bedside of the girl and played the flute close to her ear.

After a short time, the girl’s eyes slowly opened. She said, “I heard birds calling me. Where are they?” The flute player answered, “They are in the flute,” and he played some more. The little girl’s eyes lighted up as she listened. She wanted to hear more, and he played for hours. The longer he played, the stronger the little girl became.

The mother cried with happiness, and the little boy cried with her. The doctors said, “It’s a miracle!”

Native American stories have a moral. The moral of this story is even the humblest of flutes can work miracles.

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    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you, Irc7815. I think I have heard the story of the wolf. I love folklore and even took a class in it in college. Thank you for telling it and reminding me of it. It is so true, and a great concept of good and evil.

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 

      6 years ago from Central Virginia

      I love this story. The oral stories from traditional Indian cultures have so much to teach. Your story reminds me of the Cherokee legend of the wolf. Do you know it? A grandfather was telling his grandson about the two sides of the human nature. He explained that within each of us there are two wolves; one wolf is kind and gentle, the other mean and cold. The grandson looks at the grandfather and asks, "Grandfather, which one wins"? The Grandfather simply replied - "the one we feed." So very true.

      I am so glad you shared the story of the little flute that no one wanted.

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you, b. Malin. I am glad you liked it. I hope you do read more of my hubs. I'm trying to work up to a readership, but since I don't have the time to write a hub a day, or even a hub a week, it is slow-go.

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 

      6 years ago

      What a Beautiful, and Simple story of Love and Determination MizBejabbers. I look forward to Following your Hubs. Here at Hub Pages, we are like a "Family" of writers.

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you kashmir66. I wish I could take credit for it, but the spouse is basking in this glory.

    • kashmir56 profile image

      Thomas Silvia 

      6 years ago from Massachusetts

      WOW what a beautiful story,enjoyed reading it !

      Vote up and more !!!

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thanks Angelo52!

    • Angelo52 profile image

      Angelo52 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      Really enjoyed this story. Thanks for sharing it.

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Right! He knows I'll take care of everything except the heavy lifting and technical stuff. I don't think he ever met a broom or a mop before he married me. Vacuum cleaners he understands. He is an electronics engineer (he used to build and engineer radio stations), so he does have his talents. He said that he never mastered spelling and envies anyone who can spell. I guess his severe dyslexia didn't help, but I don't see how he mastered numbers with it.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      6 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      MizBejabbers.....Bless your heart! I say we all "spoil" our husbands far too much!! I swear mine has learned to "play dumb," just because he KNOWS I'll take care of it all.....We must think they're worth it!! lmao!

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      fpherj48, thanks for your kind words. Yes, my husband can tell some stories, too. Trouble is, he can't spell worth a hoot, so I have to write them up for him. Thanks for the UP!

      I told him about all the wonderful comments he was getting on his story. He beamed from ear to ear.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      6 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      What an interesting and "special" talent your husband has!! The story is too sweet! In your home lives TWO very talented people!! UP+

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you so much, MsLofton. Glad to see you enjoyed it!

    • MsLofton profile image

      MsLofton 

      6 years ago from IL

      This is beautiful!

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you. Native American stories usually contain beauty or grace, or both.

    • Coolmon profile image

      Coolmon 

      6 years ago from Earth

      Beautiful Story, what else can i say.

    • MizBejabbers profile imageAUTHOR

      Doris James-MizBejabbers 

      6 years ago

      Thank you, Will and Becky. I appreciate your comments, and I know he will, too.

    • Becky Katz profile image

      Becky Katz 

      6 years ago from Hereford, AZ

      Beautiful story.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 

      6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      What a beautiful story your husband has created! Wow!

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