The Red Rose

One spring day a red rose blossomed in a forest. As the rose looked around, a pine tree said, ‘What a beautiful flower. I wish I was that lovely.’ The rose remarked, ‘It seems I am the most beautiful plant in this forest.’ A sunflower asked, ‘Why do you say that? In this forest there are many beautiful plants. You are just one of them.’ The rose replied, ‘I see everyone admiring me.’

Then the rose looked at a cactus and said, ‘Look at that ugly plant full of thorns!’ The pine tree said, ‘Red rose, what kind of talk is this? Who can say what beauty is? You have thorns too.’ The proud rose said angrily, ‘You do not know what beauty is at all. You can not compare my thorns to that of the cactus.’ As the days passed, the red rose would look say insulting things to the cactus, like: This plant is useless! How sorry I am to be his neighbor. The cactus never got upset.

Spring passed, and it became very hot. Life became difficult as no rain fell. The red rose began to wilt. One day the rose saw sparrows stick their beaks into the cactus and fly away refreshed. This was puzzling, and the rose asked the pine tree what the birds were doing. The pine tree explained that the birds got water from the cactus. ‘Doesn’t it hurt when they make holes?’ asked the rose. ‘Yes, but the cactus does not like to see any birds suffer,’ replied the pine. The rose opened its eyes in wonder and said, ‘The cactus has water?’ ‘Yes. The sparrow can bring you water if you ask the cactus.’
The red rose felt too ashamed of its past words to ask for water from the cactus, but then it did ask. The cactus kindly agreed and the birds filled their beaks with water and watered the rose’s roots. Thus the rose learned a lesson and never judged anyone by their appearance again. Never look down on anyone for everyone is a potential saint. Never harm anyone, for you do not know who’s help you might need in the future.

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