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The Life Cycle of a Gnome

The how, why and when …….

The Life Cycle of a Gnome

The two questions I am asked the most are ‘why don’t we see many baby gnomes?’ and ‘how long do you live for?’ Now seems as good a time as any, so let me try and explain….

Perhaps I should begin at the end and explain the death of a gnome, which isn’t actually a death at all. Gnomes don’t call it dying; we call it ‘forwarding’, although the act of it is, as final as a human dying in so much as, having gone ‘forward’ means we can never come back. There is no life expectancy for a gnome, no sadness when they depart and that is because we simply leave this world when we feel the need to and move on to the next. When a gnome feels that they have done all they themselves can do, to make a difference to the planet or some of the people or creatures upon it, they decide to move forward to another place and time. The number of years he or she has lived for has no bearing on the decision to go as we never feel like our bones are old, so the gnome could be in their 90’s or 900’s. It is not a decision based on a whim and it is not a matter for discussion; a gnome knows its own mind. This is a very rare occurrence as generally a gnome will always feel they can do more. Once decided upon though, they will ‘forward’ that very same night. They go to bed, there is a huge electrical storm, the sky appears very purple, and in the morning they have gone.

Now, Mother Nature requires that the balance be restored, but we gnomes have completely different physiology to humans and you will never see an expectant female gnome. What you will notice however, is that there is always a gooseberry bush very close to the communal gathering area of a group of gnomes and it is here that is the birthplace of a ‘gnomelet’. In the morning once the forwarding has occurred and as the electrical storm comes to an end, a gurgling and giggling can be heard emanating from the centre of the gooseberry bush and a new baby gnome is welcomed into the group. When the baby is first seen, there are always two fairy godmothers with it. They remain until they see the gnomelet safely in the hands of one of the gnomes.

The arrival of a gnomelet within the group is a very joyous occasion. On the first evening of his or her arrival (normally his) there is a welcoming party and naming ceremony. The purpose of this party is not only to welcome the baby gnome, but to remember fondly and give thanks to the gnome that has given us this wonderful gift (that is, the gnome that went ‘forward’), and to decide upon a name for the baby. The gnomelet is passed around the group and then each gnome writes down the name they feel best suits the baby. We lay all of the names out and should there be more than one instance of a name, it is that which is given to the baby. However, if this is not the case then all of the gnomes line up (in no particular order) and one by one they remove a name that they feel least suits the baby until only one remains and that is what the gnomelet is called. The last gnome in line (as they haven’t been able to remove a name) has the privilege of having the baby spend its first night with them. It is not the responsibility of any one gnome to look after and provide for the baby and so they spend most of the time in the communal area where we all pitch in, making the clothes and toys. When they are a few years older, they spend the day accompanying the gnomes at work. At the end of each evening the gnomelet stays at the home of a different member of the group. There is never any argument surrounding this as each of us relish the part we have to play in the guardianship of the little gnome and we are always eager to pass on to him or her some of the valuable lessons we have learnt over the many years of our long lives. Like, for example, the best way to remove a thorn from a rabbits foot, the recipe for the best protective ointment for deer hooves or how to treat an owl with a poorly eye; that sort of thing.

This practice continues for a number of years until the gnomelet reaches an age where he or she feels confident that they are able to look after themselves, usually when they are about ten. At this time, the young gnome will normally move into the home of the gnome that went forward. The home will have been refurbished or maintained and thoroughly cleaned by all members of the group over the time it has stood empty and it is always ready to provide a warm, safe environment for the young gnome to begin adulthood in.

So there you have it. Mother Nature keeping her gnome numbers balanced is why you don’t see many baby gnomes; and we cannot tell you how long we live because the ‘death’ of a gnome cannot be expected or predicted, as it is up to each individual to decide when they go!

Until next month …. X

Category: Gnomes