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THE TEA- POT

 

THERE was a proud tea-pot proudofits porcelainproudofits long spout proudof its broad handle it had something both before and behind the spout before and the handle behind and it talked about it but it did not talkabout itslidthatwas cracked it was riveted it had a de fect andone does not willingly talk of one's defects othersdothat sufficiently The cups the creampot and the sugarbasin the whole of the tea-service would remember more about the frailty of the lid and talk about it thanaboutthegoodhandle andthe splendid spout the teapot knew that

"I know them!"it said to itself"Iknow also my defect andI ad

mit ittherein lies my humilitymy modesty

we all have defects butone has also merits Thecups have a handle thesugarbasin a lid Ihaveboth ofthese and anotherthingbesides which they neverhave Ihave a spout and that makes me the queen of the teatable To the sugar-basinandthe creampot it isgranted tobethe servantsof sweet taste butI am the giver the ruler of all Idisseminate blessing among thirsty humanity in my inside theChinese leaves are prepared in the boiling tastelesswater"The teapot said all this initsundaunted youth Itstood on the tablelaid forteaand itwaslifted by thefinesthand butthe finest hand was clumsy theteapotfell the spout broke off the handle broke off the lid isnotworth talkingabout for enough has been saidabout it

The teapotlay in afaint on the floor theboilingwater ranout of it That was a hard blow it got and the hardest ofallwasthat they laughed theylaughed at it and not atthe awkward hand

"I shall never get that experience out of my mind said the teapot when it afterwards related its career to itself"Iwas called an invalid and set in a cornerand theday after presented to a woman who begged kitchenrefuse Icame down into poverty stood speechless bothout and in but there as Istood my better life beganone is one thing and becomes something quite differentEarth was put into me for a teapot that is the same as tobe buried but in the earth was put a bulb who laid itthere whogaveit Iknownot butgiven itwas a compensation for the Chinese leaves and the boiling wateracompensation for thebroken-off handleandspoutAnd thebulb lay in the earth the bulb lay in me it became myheartmy living heartand such a thing Ihad never hadbefore There was life in me there was strength andvigour The pulse beat the bulb sprouted it was burstingwith thoughts and feelingsthen itbroke out in flowerIsaw it Icarried it Iforgot myself in its loveliness it is ablessedthingtoforget oneselfin others It did notthankme it didnot thinkabout me it wasadmired and praisedI wasso gladabout it how gladmust it havebeen thenOn dayIheard it said that itdeserved a betterpotTheybrokeme through the middle it was frightfully painful buttheflower was put in abetter potandIwas thrown out into the yard Ilie there like an old potsherd,—butI havethe remembrance thatI cannot lose"

 


 

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