Tonight I was reading Arnold Lobel’s Mouse Tales to Byron. There’s a story about Tall Mouse and Short Mouse; they talk a walk together and see different things. Like a lot of Lobel, it seems light but it also kinda runs deep.
Because there’s a simple truth to this story that so few people understand, and I myself frequently forget. People have different truths because they have different experiences. They may walk the same path and yet take — in every measurable way — completely different walks. They might arrive with different truths. If you’ve only seen the birds and the flowers, you simply don’t know how other people walk among the roots and beetles.
Also, the story has a nice message about privilege.When there’s a view only Very Tall Mouse can enjoy, he doesn’t hesitate to lift his friend to share it. Not only does it bring equity to the relationship, it allows Tall Mouse to share the experience.
Somebody has probably written a 100,000 word novel to arrive at the same truth that Lobel nailed in a few sentences. Heck, people live their whole lives without attaining that truth that Lobel reveals to children in a few sentences.