Summary: Modern day fable of Satan's entrapment's. This is also available on amazon with a few color illustrations.
Satan's Rummage Sale
Once upon a time, in the nearby land of temptation, Satan was having a rummage sale. Even before leaving home, my mom had warned me by saying, “Don't be mess in' with the Devil stuff. The Devil's ways lead to no good.” Well, you know me, I went looking anyway.
At the yard sale, crowds of youngsters, teenagers, adults and senior citizens were pushing, shoving, and elbowing each other all the while searching to find truly red-hot bargains before anyone else snatched them up. Scattered carelessly about Satan's folding tables and displays were all sorts of shiny-bright, scintillantly-glistening offerings which appeared to be exactly what you might need or must have to be satisfied.
A school librarian seemed to be switching price tags to quietly check out her own discounts. Two baubles and a cigarette lighter were shoplifted by a teen in full view of the Devil. He just shrugged saying, “Who cares, they were just small little things? It's no problem at all.”A silver-haired Granny poked a man with her cane as she shoved him aside. She claimed that was just an accident but she never said she was sorry either. Two giggling destructive toddlers were tugging on an anatomically correct doll until its arms broke off. A man wife was quarreling as he picked over a box of lewd magazines. She had already selected a nude, porcelain figurine of her idol Adonis. “This is art,” she exclaimed, “your magazines are just trashy.” Quarrels and short tempers abounded. Bad arguments flared up and torched an array of hostilities. It wasn't a pretty site.
For sale, at deep markdowns, were the fraudulent tools of lies and deceitfulness which came in all shapes, sizes, colors, and could be spread out everywhere. Since you could find these items almost anywhere, today they were dirt cheap. The other offerings were a strangely hideous assortment of wretched double-jointed thingamabobs, dangling doojiggers and atrocious doohickeys, plus a wide assortment of prickly little doodads.
Most folks reasoned, if you just had one of these things, or even better if you had most of them, your life could certainly be fulfilled and downright satisfying. I wondered why the mob was in such a frenzy? What the Tempter offered appealed very little to me, but still I had to see for myself.
Satan, trying to guess who was easy prey and who was not, eyed me like a foul-smelling vulture. Testing to see if I could be lured within his reach, he beckoned me over as he picked up a nasty looking claw hammer and offered to give it to me. “This hateful hammer is,” he said quickly calculating his words of deceit, “is purported to easily smash to smithereens all hopes and deeds. Unless, of course, your hopes were false or your deeds dishonest. In that case, the claw hammer could help you build evil things bigger and better.” My mind was becoming muddled by his fast talking, smooth-sounding words. In my confusion, I recalled 'bigger and better' was usually good. It all was beginning to sound pretty good. But the hairs on the back of my neck stood up.
Hesitantly, and maybe too slowly, I started to back away but the dark angel's gaze held me firmly. He pointed, leaning on one of Lucifer's warped walls was an assortment of gardening implements. A well-used, push-behind, lawn spreader came complete with the seeds of destruction and promised to grow false pride quick with strong, deep roots. There was also a hand-held pump sprayer with a hose and nozzle that could spread conceit and distrust with the best of them. A long handled, many-pronged, rake of scorn was hung contemptuously and carelessly near the well-honed, sharp-edged shovel of jealousy.
There was even a smattering of antiques. An old pickax of anxiety could be easily swung but hard to control, unlike the spiked mace of malice which could bash friendships in any direction you decided. Tucked under a shelf, partially hidden from view were some smaller, needle-like implements just bully to the pulpit for gossiping, backbiting, and selfishness.
There was even a very unappealing, disgusting box of slothful odds and ends containing pieces of doll parts and bits of green, plastic soldiers offering haughty eyes, bloodied hands, wicked hearts, and feet that would run to evil. The Devil reached in and tugged a long pull-string on the back of an aged, plastic talking doll. When he let the pull-string go, a nervous, squeaky voice poured out lies and gave false witness until the twine fully returned. Hearing the noise and flipping on its own on-off switch, a tiny manikin jerked around coarsely stirring up conflict and ill-feelings that spilled out of the box.
Satan said, “That little mannequin's a blast, loads and loads of amusement for me. But take your pick of any piece in the box. Chose what you like, they are awfully fun to play with. Even more entertaining if you involve your spouse, friends, or neighbors. The more the merrier!”