The Lady and The Flower
There was a lady who planted a garden. She watered the seeds. She weeded the dirt. She carefully placed mulch around the seedlings as they grew. She checked the plants daily to make sure insects were not hurting the leaves. She put a sturdy fence around the garden for protection. The plants grew tall and strong.
One plant had lovely, delicate leaves like green lace. The tall stems produced many buds. One morning, the buds popped opened into the most magnificent purple and white flowers. The scent from the blossom was intoxicating. Bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds delighted in visiting the flowers and drinking the sweet nectar as the sun rose higher into the sky.
When the lady came to the garden that day, she saw the flowers. She stomped the plant to the ground. Her heavy gardening boots broke the delicate stems and crushed the lovely flowers. “I wanted you to be corn!” she scoffed at the flower, before stomping back to the house.
The sun rose the next morning. As the soil and air warmed, the plant struggled to raise its leaves out of the dirt and to catch the sunlight. It attempted to lift one of the bent stems. The battered petals of the flowers curled and turned brown in the sunlight. The plant drooped. The lady came to the garden. She watered and checked the plants.
As the days went by, the injured plant struggled to thrive. Its roots grew deep and absorbed as many nutrients as possible to aid in its healing. Its leaves worked hard to turn sunlight into energy. It raised new stems and produced new buds.
One morning the plant succeeded in opening one of its flowers, although smaller and a little more stunted than the last beautiful display. The bees came buzzing to the flower to drink its essence and a butterfly landed on a broken leaf branch, which had withered but not died.
The lady came to tend the garden. She saw the flower and again raised her boot. She crushed the plant with her heel and yelled at it, “I told you to be corn!” She grabbed her rake and stormed out of the garden.
A bee landed on the crumpled flower. Many of the petals lay spread on the ground and the flower’s head hung limply on the crushed stem. He smelled the delightful aroma of the flower, which still lingered. He savored the beautiful color of the trampled petals. He heard the flower crying.
“Why do you cry? It must hurt very much, how she has broken and bent you,” he whispered to the blossom.
“Oh, the pain is not much,” said the flower. “I am crying because I can never be an ear of corn like the lady wants. I can only be a flower.”
“But don’t you realize how magnificent you are?” asked the shocked bee. “I have flown over all the fields and all the gardens. You have the prettiest leaves, the most delicious smell, the deepest purple color, and the finest petals. You are the most beautiful flower I have ever seen,” he said to the drooping plant.
“But I’ll never be corn,” sniffed the crumpled plant.