Lucy Pearl and the Ivybridge Tree

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Children Stories  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is one of a collection of short stories, called 'Stories From The Book Of Autumn. it is called Lucy Pearl And The Ivybridge Tree. It is the story of a schoolgirl's love, local legends and deceit.

Submitted: July 21, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: July 21, 2017



'It's a childish tale',

Said Abigail,

Lucy's older sister.

Who'd been down to the woods herself,

Where the miller's son had kissed her.


Until one day, he went away,

The millers' precious Lou.

No note or trace,

He just left the place.

Some said he'd joined a crew.


And then others said

That poor Louie is dead.

He'd crossed that moor too late.

A screaming sound

And a finger found

That said the Noogan was his fate.


'He's gone to set-sail'

Whispered Abigail

'Make his fortune on the sea…

And when he comes back,

With doubloons in his sack

There'll be plenty there for three.


To Ivy bridge

Where evening midge

Are caught by swooping swallow

Here Abigail in wooded vale

Had taken Louie to a hollow


A sacred tree said to be

Where lovers consummated

Or chant their name

And make your claim

 For love reciprocated


Now Lucy Pearl,

Romantic Girl

Had fallen for a boy. 

But he was unaware

That she should so care.

His name was Lawrence Malloy.


An all-boys school,

She'd hear them call

As they walked on past here gate.

A little coy, 

She'd watch that boy

And every day she'd wait.


So convinced was she

That he would be

The lover of her life

To that tree 

She went to see

If she could be his wife


So, Lucy Pearl

Romantic girl

Set off there alone.

It was getting dark

When she heard a bark

From the house of Miller Malone.


A white ribbon she'd take

And an inscription she make

Carving it on that tree.

But something would follow

And hide in that hollow

And that was the end of Lucy.


When next morning broke

And gentle chimney smoke

Rose from the village baker

Hunter and hound

On that moor found

A dilemma for the undertaker.


All the towns people grieved

And then ranted and seethed

To hunt that Noogan down.

But nothing was seen

Not a fig not a bean

But stories ran rife in the town.


After twelve months had passed,

The ship at last

Returned with a reasonable hoard.

But far from beguiled,

Was Abigail, now with child,

For Louie was never aboard.



After several years

Those Noogan fears

Began to be forgotten

Until one day

While Abigail was away

Her child found someone all rotten.


'It’s the end of a search'

Said a man from the church.

'It's the Millers precious Lou!

And with one finger less

I'm inclined to guess that

Here we have a clue.’


On Abigail’s return

She would immediately learn

That questions for her abated.

And a pale Abigail

Looked suddenly frail.

It was a day she'd anticipated.


'That ring that she wore!'

Miller Malone swore

Louie before had been wearing.

And so Abigail

Began to wail

And confessed on a bible swearing.


'Yes, I took that ring back

By a meat cleavers hack

Then killed my Louie stone dead.

With his child inside

All the time he had lied.

He wanted my sister instead!'



There's more to this tale'

Wept Abigail

'My sister’s poor sorry fate.

To Ivybridge I would follow

And hide in that hollow

On that night she went out so late.


With wild jealousy

I read on that tree

The initials with whom she was smitten

And her life I would take

Was my grievous mistake

For L.M were those initials written.'


How could she have known

It wasn't Louie Malone

But initials of some other boy

And in her jealous confusion

Made a hasty conclusion

And denied Lucy forever from Lawrence Malloy.


To the gallows Abigail went

Trying to repent

Her daughter taken away.

'From that very first kiss,

How did it come to this?'

Were the last words Abigail would say.


Then when centuries went by

Two lovers would lie

Beneath a large old tree.

'How curious' the girl said

At the initials they read.

'Lucy Malloy? That's me.'



© Copyright 2020 BillyLouSilver. All rights reserved.

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