Stories of Kindness from Around the World

The Bouncy Ball That Changed Me

--by freeHUGSrock, posted Nov 22, 2008

This is not a story that describes kindness that I have done but rather kindness that I have received and in a way the kindness that you receive gives energy to the kindness that you show to others.

Last night I entered myself into a poetry slam. It was very rushed. Very last minute and I was unprepared. Yet I really wanted to do it. I have wanted to get out and perform one of my poems for a while now. So without the support of my family, I got up in front of a group of people and got ready to present my poem.

The slam was a competition but I did not expect to win. Judges were randomly chosen from the audience by having bouncy ball thrown out into their midst to see who would catch them. As it is with most slams performers had 2 minutes to impress the judges who would then give a score from 0.0 to 10. There were 5 judges.

I was easily the youngest person in the competition. i am only 16 and everybody else about 20-70. Yet i didn't feel out of place because I was surrounded by people like myself. Writers. Still, I was a little apprehensive because I had only performed once in my life.

My poem went really well. People liked it and I think many were impressed that I had the guts to get up on stage and perform my own work. I was so preoccupied with the fact that I had recalled the entire poem from memory that I never looked at the judges score. In the end I came third but I was not disappointed. After all, it was only 0.3 points that separated me from second place.

When it was all over I was waiting in the car-park for my dad to pick me up when one of the judges came up to me and told me I had done a fantastic job and she was envious that I had the courage to stand up and put my words on the line. Even though many people had congratulated me this was different. The lady judge was very genuine. Almost on impulse she said, "Here, have the ball, so you remember tonight". I don't know what it was but I couldn't speak. It was like I got all warm and tingly. This random stranger had reached out to me.

Finally I came to my senses and pulled a smile card out for the woman thanking her for her words and the ball. She was impressed by the card but no words passed between us. It was a silent understanding. Words would ruin the moment.

My father beeped from the carpark so I nodded my goodbye and hopped in the car, holding in my hand the bouncy ball that changed me.

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Readers Comments

landon wilbur wrote: This short story was very nice!

I love how such a small thing like a bouncy ball can change someone's life (:
linklink88 wrote: Thats very nice.
ngoanas wrote: Thanks for the strenghthening story. This should motivate you for you motivated me to stand the ground when is time to. Let god bless you through all your perforrmance so hit the number one sport with a 0. 5point differance.
pjacob wrote: Really fascinating. Your words "no words passed between us. It was a silent understanding. Words would ruin the moment. " shows that you are not only a poet but a writer. Your future would make many happy. A parting word. The best attitude is gratitude.
john wrote: really a wonderful story in suspense
im @ your house! wrote: i like this story alot
i just never knew that so many people carried smile cards
peepers wrote: I wish I had your courage at your age. Good job. I am finally getting my voice and I'm twice your age. :)
freeHUGSrock wrote: I put up the poem here is anyone is wanting to read it. You can find it at this url:

It is called The Tribute Poem
elizaliza wrote: It is nice to always do something that makes every moment worth remembering. I wish you geater success in all ur future endeavours.
Heart wrote: That's amazing you must be a great poet
Keep trying to be the best

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