Friday, July 22, 2011

A Lovely Little Lily

A little lily plant developed pretty, white flowers with a fine fragrance. The fragrance reached a tall teak tree standing near the lily. The teak tree became envious of the lily as it could not produce such beautiful and fragrant flowers. The teak told the lily, “Hey Lily, you are silly and too tiny. You are weak and fragile. But I am tall and strong. I can withstand heat, rain or storm.” The lily was silent and continued to enrich the environment by its fine fragrance.

The next day, a team of wood-cutters reached that site. They cut down the branches of the teak tree and finally felled the whole tree. Then they carried it away, cut its timber into planks and blocks and built several pieces of furniture with its wood. The small lily stood there silently, worrying about the fate of the teak and spreading its fragrance all around.

A tiny fish was swimming silently across a lake. A larger carnivorous fish rushed to the spot and opened its large mouth to swallow the little fish. The tiny fish begged to let her free. But the large fish laughed at him and asked with anger and arrogance, “How dare you talk to me? You are too small and silly. I am so strong and stout. I will finish you in a moment. But suddenly, a fisherman lowered his net from a boat. The large fish was caught in the net, entangled and entrapped in its meshes. The tiny fish easily escaped through a mesh of the net.

It is sometimes safer and sweeter to be small and insignificant. Ben Jonson (1572-1637), in his famous poem on true growth, comments on the contrasting characteristics of a little lily and a gigantic oak tree. He concludes,

“A lily of a day

Is fairer far in May.

Although it fall and die that night,

It was the plant and flower of light.

In small proportions we just beauties see;

And in short measures life may perfect be.”


© By Dr. Babu Philip, Professor, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Fine Arts Avenue, Kochi-682016,Kerala, India and Leo. S. John, Maniparambil, Ooriyakunnath,Kunnumbhagom, Kanjirappally, Kottayam-686507,Kerala, India.

For more moral stories, parables and anecdotes for students kindly visit our web-site:

This is Story No. 79 in this site. Please click ‘Older Posts’ at the bottom of a page to read previous stories and click 'Newer Posts' at the bottom of a page to read newer stories in this site. Please click on a word in the 'Story Themes' to read stories on that theme.

No comments:

Post a Comment