They sat in a broken circle. Her and her catatonic son on one side, on the other the man who claimed he could heal her son with the tears of a weeping willow.
She would have thought it a complete sham if not for her neighbour, who swore up and down that this man was the one who had healed her apathetic niece.
If the man was bothered by her doubts, he didn’t let it show. Guitar cradled in his arms, and a bowl by his feet, he fingerpicked a gentle song at a leisurely tempo.
Before she knew it, one of the willow branches had dipped low to the ground, and drop by drop, it cried into the man’s bowl.
When the bowl was half filled, the man stopped his song, and the branch withdrew into the air. The man scooped the bowl off the ground and set his guitar aside. With careful movements, he pressed the bowl to her son’s lips until her son drank everything.
Her son took a deep breath that lifted his head and straightened his back, blew out a long sigh that carried the weight of many frustrated days and sorrowful nights.
Then, for the first time in a long time, her son smiled.