Exegesis of "A Tale"
It's a true story, actually, or rather a true tale. All but the last third, that is -- I just made that up ... things have to make sense, after all. The knight -- well, the man -- is still in the wilderness. It's been some years now, and he has no hope ... but we knew that. For our part, we might hope for him, might pray for him. He wouldn't admit it, but it's not so much despair as rage that stays his lips from prayer. Endings should be happy, after all, when you're a knight in a tale. He failed and still fails to appreciate that he lived in the real world, for all that there are dragons.
For my part, I have long known that God needs fools. Pity those whom God uses. That's why I have intervened. We always know how every story ends. Perhaps happily ever after, but certainly in death. There is a happy death, though, and I gave it to this poor, pathetic fool, wouldn't you say? -- if he dies, that is. Who knows ... maybe he recovers. But what should we expect? If mercy is to be found, it's not in plots, but themes.
What then shall we say? That he died happy? But he still lives, remember? -- I made the ending up. My tale-spinning may just be the tickling of an ear. I wrote each of these three parts years apart, and I just made up the last part. So what shall we say? Maybe it's this: love has value in itself, regardless of its object or its outcome. If we love dragons, what must we expect but catastrophe. But this love has made the world richer, if only in the eyes of God.