The King’s Chair
The first time I saw it, I was only five years old, and I still remember the feeling I had when I discovered that beauty can hide behind anything, even a chair. We were walking around the street market with my mother, it was a busy Sunday and people came and went in the streets when I saw it. Its red caught my eye, and under the sun it looked like a burning piece of wood put there just for my discovery.
I had never payed any special attention to furniture, or to anything else other than games for that matter, but that chair said something to me that I couldn’t yet understand. My mother realized how hypnotized I was by the chair when she noticed that I had made a complete stop and she was about to pull my arm out if she kept walking. She looked at the chair, saw my face, and smiled.
“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” She said, and I smiled back. We both knew we couldn’t afford it, and even thinking of buying it would have been unreal.
But my mother knew me well enough to know I didn’t care if we could buy it, I wanted to know where it came from. I don’t know if I loved stories since I was born, or I love them because my mother knew how to tell them, but I always wanted to know the story behind anything. She didn’t wait for me to ask, and said “It belonged to a king, a king who found the color red the most vibrant, and who one day asked the best carpenter in his kingdom to draw the most beautiful women on the wood of the chair.”
I couldn’t believe it, I was standing in front of a chair that belonged once to a king, and I discovered that I also thought red was the most vibrant color, and also thought beautiful women should be immortalized in wood, or any form. I was too young then, and didn’t know it, but the exuberance of the color, the delicate drawings in the wood, and the way the chair made me feel changed me forever.
As I grew older I appreciated my mother’s stories even more, not as real tales a kid believes anymore, but as stories a mother told her son to escape from the boredom of routine. And, while I know the stories I once thought were real are not, I cannot deny that as soon as I was able to, I looked around for a chair just like the one we had seen that day, and when I bought it I felt happy to be buying a chair that belonged to a king once, and felt honored to sit in my new throne.