The Missing Piece

the missing piece

Have you read Shel Silverstein’s The Missing Piece?  No?  Why not?  Go read it right now.  It’s okay……I’ll wait.

If you’re too busy I can read it for you.  No really, I don’t mind.  You see, it’s all I’ve been thinking about for the past few weeks.  A book that I read when I was young.  A book that I have read to my son and my daughter.  A classic.

It’s the story of a little ball who is missing a piece.

“It was missing a piece.

And it was not happy.”

It rolls along through life looking for it a missing piece.  Sometimes it sings a little song.

“Oh I’m lookin’ for my missin’ piece

Over land and over seas

So grease my knees and fleece my bees

I’m lookin’ for my missin’ piece”

It endures the elements.

“Sometimes it baked in the sun

but then the cool rain would come down.”

And other times it just observed the things it passed.

“and sometime it would pass a beetle

and sometimes the beetle would pass it”

That’s just like life isn’t it?  Sometimes you are in the fast lane driving a Maserati and sometimes you’re on the bus and it’s taking the milk run.  But always you are moving forward.  Even when you don’t think you are.

Once the ball thought it had found its piece.  But alas, the piece it found didn’t want to be taken.

“I am not your missing piece.

I am nobody’s piece.

I am my own piece.”

You can’t force things.  You can work hard and try.  But if it isn’t meant to be it won’t be.  All you die hard control freaks, take note.  Me included.

It found some other pieces but none of them were quite right.  One was too small.  One too big.  One too sharp.  One too square.

Is anything in life a perfect fit?  Rarely.  You adapt.  You make do.  You make the best of what you are dealt.

One time the ball seemed to have found the perfect piece…but it didn’t hold it tightly enough…and it lost it.  And then it found another piece and it held on too tight…..and it broke it.

If you find “it” what do you do with it?  Hold on……but leave some wiggle room.

And so it rolled along having adventures, falling into holes and running into brick walls.  Sound familiar?

Until one day it found its missing piece.  It fit perfectly.  And it was so happy.

Except now it couldn’t sing.  And it rolled so quickly that it couldn’t stop to smell the flowers or talk to the bugs.  And adventures passed it by.

“too fast for a butterfly to land”

“Aha, it thought, So that’s how it is!”

So it gave up it’s piece….and slowly rolled away.  And as it rolled it sang.

“Oh I’m lookin’ for my missin’ piece

Over land and over seas

So grease my knees and fleece my bees

I’m lookin’ for my missin’ piece”

The Best Thing in Life is the quest.  That is what brings fulfillment and not the attainment of the object itself.


3 thoughts on “The Missing Piece

  1. cbecker53 September 6, 2016 / 4:15 pm

    Years ago a friend told me she loved this book and gave it to her brother, because he was a free spirit, and a special person, and she told him when she gave it to him “I hope you never find your missing piece.”

    • bestthingsinlife1964 September 6, 2016 / 4:45 pm

      I have always felt I needed to find something…..I’ve finally realized that I don’t have to. It’s an amazing feeling.

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