a breakfast serial

One bite-sized story every morning to uplift, motivate, or provoke thought.

Echoes from Sweden

< a Swedish folktale, retold by Jill >

In 1862, a new federal act invited anyone, age 21 and up, to apply for a land grant. Although the grant applied equally to native-born citizens, freed slaves, and anyone who had never taken up arms against the U.S. government, it found greatest appeal amongst the Swedes.

The Swedish pioneers were young and unafraid. They ventured into wild and wind-swept territories, felling oaks and tilling soil with iron-willed perseverance. Often, they boasted of their new homeland, especially when they encountered prospectors from the old country.

On one such occasion, a prospector came across a man named Sven who was chopping wood. They struck up a conversation.

“Don’tcha know,” the prospector said. “Back in Sveden, up in da Fjällen Mountains, I vould call out Yonson! and 10 minutes later get knocked off my clogs by da echo!”

Sven stopped chopping wood and turned to the stranger. He paused to think.

Then, at the top of his lungs, he yelled, “YONSON!

The two stood silently for one minute. The woodpile began to tremble.

Suddenly, all at once, 500 voices answered, “VICH YONSON?!

1 Comment»

  Larry Who wrote @

Ouch! I didn’t see it coming.


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