ANANSE AND THE THREE WISE SINGERS
Once upon a time in a remote village called Asemso, there lived three good friends. They were so close that they did everything together as brothers. Despite their closeness. they had one problem which made their lives quite miserable. They all had one of their legs amputated. Due to the fact that they were all physically challenged, they were always discriminated against by the people in the village. No one wanted to work with them at the same workplace. Neither was anyone willing to offer them employment.
In fact, no one over wanted to live in their midst, not even their own family members. Life was very difficult for these three friends. They had no job to do, no friends or loved ones to share their predicaments with. They therefore resorted to begging in order to make a living. Even with that, not even a single person from their village was willing to give them any alms.
They would wake up very early in the morning and move from one household to another, even to market places and lorry parks, but would only come home empty handed. The only days they had something small was on market days. This was because during the market days, people came from various villages and towns surrounding their village to trade at the market. Some of those people had pity on the poor amputated friends. Such people gave them gifts in the form of coins and the leftover of their wares. In order to have their peace of mind, these three amputated friends moved to a place far away from their village to stay. In fact, they were the only people living in that isolated area. They cleared a piece of land over there and built their own but to live in. They also made a small farm of their own, where they planted food crops like plantain, cassava, cocoyam and other vegetables to make a living. In fact they felt much more relieved when they took that decision. They were completely cut off from the rest of the village folks. Thus no one heard about them and no one knew their whereabouts. Likewise, the three friends also did not know about anything that went on in their village. Due to the fact that they were the only ones living at that isolated place, they always felt lonely and somehow homesick.
They therefore resorted to singing, in order to overcome the feeling of loneliness. Hence anytime they returned from their small farm in the evening, they would quickly prepare their supper, take their bath and eat. Right after that, they would start singing till it was time for them to go to bed. As they sang day in day out, they realized their God-given talents. Thus. their voices became so melodious that one could hardly resist being carried away by the beauty of the songs they sang everyday.
One day, the king of their village held a singing competition in honour of his only daughter. The winners of that competition were to receive a cash prize. The three friends were working on their farms one morning when they overheard some hunters talking about the singing competition. They decided to participate and started preparing feverishly towards the competition. On the scheduled date for the competition, the king’s palace was filled to capacity. People had come from far and near to witness the competition.
Different participants came to perform as the appointed judges awarded each participant with deserving marks. Soon it was the turn of the three friends to perform. The audience started making cat-calls at the three friends as they went upstage to sing their song. Some of the audience were even shoving them off and pulling their shirts as they limped through the crowd to get to the stage. They did all these just to discourage the three friends from competing. Finally, they managed to get to the stage and started to perform. Their voices were so sweet that the audience wondered if they were actually the ones doing the singing. Surprisingly every one was in no time moved by their melodious voices. Naturally. the audience started dancing excitingly and cheering them up as they sang along with the three friends. The three friends were eventually crowned champions of the singing competition. They were carried up shoulder high by the audience as they went forward for their prize.
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