Within a village square there was a well
With waters deep and cool and clear and pure;
So great it was, the villagers were sure
That it could douse the fiery pits of hell.
Each day they’d gather round its rim and dwell
In reverential awe of its allure;
They mused that in its depths must lie the cure
To all diseases man had yet to quell.
As years went by, a drought besieged the land —
The villagers, en masse, began to think
Their awe was not enough: that they were cursed;
In penance, they encircled hand in hand
The well, but they forbade themselves to drink,
And fell before its stone to die of thirst.