Story No. 77 – The proud red rose
One beautiful spring day a red rose blossomed in a forest. Many
kinds of trees and plants grew there. As the rose looked around,
a pine tree nearby said, “What a beautiful flower. I wish I was that
lovely.” Another tree said, “Dear pine, do not be sad, we can not
The rose turned its head and remarked, “It seems that I am the
most beautiful plant in this forest.” A sunflower raised its yellow
head and asked, “Why do you say that? In this forest there are
many beautiful plants. You are just one of them.” The red rose
replied, “I see everyone looking at me and 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 red rose looked angrily at the pine and said, “I thought
you had good taste! You do not know what beauty is at all. You can
not compare my thorns to that of the cactus.”
“What a proud flower”, thought the trees.
The rose tried to move its roots away from the cactus, but it could not move. As the days passed,
the red rose would look at the cactus and say insulting things, like: This plant is useless?
How sorry I am to be his neighbor.
The cactus never got upset and he even tried to advise the rose, saying,
“God did not create any form of life without a purpose.”
Spring passed, and the weather became very warm. Life became difficult in the forest, as the plants
and animals needed water and no rain fell. The red rose began to wilt. One day the rose saw
sparrows stick their beaks into the cactus and then fly away, refreshed. This was puzzling, and the
red rose asked the pine tree what the birds were doing. The pine tree explained that the birds got
water from the cactus. “Does it not 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 you can also drink from it. The sparrow can bring
water to you if you ask the cactus for help.”
The red rose felt too ashamed of its past words and
behavior to ask for water from the cactus, but then it
finally did ask the cactus for help. 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.