The Cup of Wondering

The Cup Of Wondering

A fairytale by Anona O’Dell

Once upon a time there was a young girl who lived in a far away land. On the day she was born her mother gave her a special cup. It was a beautiful cup called the “Cup of Wondering”. Everything she drank from the cup tasted pure and sweet. When she drank from the little cup her feet would lift from the ground and her eyes would turn into diamonds. It made all the world twinkle, as though it were covered with the first dew of morning.  

The girl would spend her days in the forest wondering about the sky and the animals. She felt that wondering was the most valuable treasure on earth. She would go to her mother and ask all the questions she had. Her mother would simply smile and say, “Drink from your little cup and tell me what you think the answer could be”.  

The young girl would imagine the answers to all the questions she had. She would imagine that the sun was filled with goodness.  And when the darkness came it was only because the sun was busy driving away all that was bad. The sun would return each morning and shine the warmth of its triumph down on the faces of all the people and animals on the earth. Her mother would listen with her eyes closed to all of the answers the young girl could imagine and when she had finished speaking her mother would smile and nod her head. The young girl was sure that her mother was the wisest person in the world.  

One day her mother became very ill and for the first time the young girl could see that there was a small box under her mother’s pillow. The girl asked about the box but this time the her mother did not smile. Her face was filled with worry and a seriousness that the young girl had never seen before. Her mother told her to take the box deep into the forest and bury it. Her mother warned her not to open the box. The young girl did not understand but she took the box and set out to do as she was told.  

As she walked along she noticed something written on the dark box. She rubbed the dust away and read “The Box Of Answers” written in faded letters on the side. She wondered about it and wanted to open the box but she felt sure that her mother would explain everything when she returned home. She went to the deepest part of the forest and buried the small box far below the mossy surface and then hurried home to ask about it. When she got home there a deep sadness in the air and she found that her mother had died. The young girl was heartbroken. She turned to the Cup of Wondering and drank from it. The diamonds in her eyes made everything twinkle and she began wondering about all the things in the world but now her mother was not there to listen.

As the days passed the girl wondered more and more about the Box of Answers. She could not imagine why her mother had asked her to get rid of it. Finally she went to the place in the forest where the dark box was buried and dug it up. She remembered the warning that her mother had given her. She sat staring at the box for a long time and finally convinced herself that her mother must have been mistaken. After all wouldn’t her mother want her to have the answers to all of her questions? She gathered her courage and opened the box. Immediately she saw the answer to something she had always wondered about. She was so exited and delighted with the box that she dropped her little cup on the forest floor and ran home with the mysterious box. Each day the girl would open the box and get another answer. She was so fascinated with the box and all of its answers, that she didn’t notice her feet starting to touch the ground. It was an odd feeling but she was too busy with the box to notice. She stopped spending time in the forest. After all there was little reason to go there. She knew why the birds sang and why the trees were green. She didn’t even care that the diamonds in her eyes were growing smaller. Such was her obsession with the Box of Answers. 

She found herself wanting to go into the town and talk about all of the things she knew. She started buying things she didn’t need and when she was old enough to marry she select a husband who was an appropriate match for a woman of her intelligence.  She started to feel superior to the people she would meet. She could not understand how the people could be so ignorant. She was annoyed and cruel to the ones who would ask for her help. She was glad she had the Box the spare her from such stupidity. 

Then one day she found that she was going to have a child. She consulted the Box for all the answers she needed to know to raise a healthy, intelligent child. But on the day the baby was born something strange happened. As she gazed at the wonder of the newborn, she started to remember her little Cup of Wondering. After so many years she was starting to miss the diamonds in her eyes and all of things she didn’t know. She rushed back to where she had dropped the little Cup so many years ago. She found it still lying in the spot where it had fallen. As she cleaned away the layers of dirt that had accumulated on the beautiful Cup she started to remember how good things tasted and how beautiful the sky was. She took it home and gave it to the child.  She could see the diamonds in the eyes of the precious child and for the first time in many years she smiled and felt her feet lifting from the ground. She went to her room and hid the Box of Answers deep under her pillow. She gave away all of the things she didn’t need. She noticed the kindness in the face of the man she had married and as the years passed each time the child would ask a question she would smile quietly, close her eyes and say, “Drink from your little Cup and tell what you think the answer could be”.