Buttercute’s story

Sagan om Smörblomma

In a glade in the forest lived a society of flowers in peace and prosperity. There was Bluebelly who recited poems during summer nights, and Prime-Rosa who was secretly in love with him. There was Gladiola the matchmaker. Holly-Chock to whom the flowers went when wanted to marry. Hya-Sprint who was always ready for games and sports. Lavendoris who was a real tell-tale. Forget-me-now who never hesitated to shared what was on his mind. Candel-Julia who always had a kind word to spare and many, many more.

One of the flower was little Buttercute. Her dream was to be as tall and beautiful as her idol, Sunpower. She swayed high abowe her and was as beautiful as – well, the sun. Sunpower was way above everybody else, and her golden curls lent their brilliance to the glade. Buttercute felt small and ugly in comparison, squatting in the shade of her idol.

‘Some people must always complain,’ muttered Sadiolus. ‘I have problems too, but you don’t hear me complain, do you?’

‘She should get married!’ sighed Gladiola . ‘I met Mistle-Joe the other night. Oh, he smelled good. He should suit her fine.’

‘She is great as she is allready,’ said Candel-Julia. ‘If she could only see her own beauty; then she wouldn’t try being somebody else.’

‘I will write a poem in her honour,’ exlaimed Bluebelly who believed great poetry could solve all problems. ‘And Corny-Flower can write the music,’ he said and Corny-Flower nodded her head excidedly.

Prime-Rosa gazed affectionately at her poet, sighed and had no idea what they were all talking about.

‘We will through a party for her,’ suggested A. Corny, and everyone said it was a splendid idea.

Gladiola arrenged the table settings and placed the sweet scented Mistle-Joe next to Buttercute. Bluebelly wrote a divine poem about beauty, and Corny-Flower sat next to him strumming the lute. Hya-Sprint prepared games and dancing, and Holly-Chock prepared speaches.

Finally, the big day was here. Everybody was invited, even the birds and the bees. Everybody came and and everybody was happy. It was laughter and merriment, games and dancing. There were food and beverage in abundance; both nectar and ambrosia was on the table. The only waited for the guest of honour to arrive, but she didn’t show up. She stood hidden behind a rock and weeping. She didn’t think they really wanted somebody as small and ugly at the party. Mr. Pontentilius had to sit alone, slouching his head.

Time passed and autumn came, and winter, and all the flowers slept under the snow. But Buttercute lay awake a long time brooding. She decided to stand up really early next spring and suck up as much sun as possible. That way she would be as tall and beautyiful as Sunpower, she thought.

When spring came she stuck her head up earlier than both Anymore and Early-Start. She did everything she could to be as tall as possible; even if she became thin as an osier and frail as a reed. When the flowers woke from hibernation she was tall and lanky, just as she wanted, but she was also wobbly and had a hard time standing up.

‘Oh, my dear child,’ said Candel-Julia. ‘This can’t end well,’ muttered Forget-me-now. Bluebelly exclaimed ‘Alas!’ before he fainted. Prime-Rosa squirted dew in his face and forgot everything else. Buttercute just continued to grow and grow and became taller and taller.

High above her Sunpower soared, and higher still – the sun, the most beautiful of them all. She forgot how the wind made her sway and roll, how her roots barely could keep her grounded and support her with the nourishment she needed; she forgot everything. Being tall was the only thing she cared about.

Soon I’m everything I dreamt about, she thought. Then the sun went behind the clouds. A big raindrop fell on her head. And another one. And another. And soon the rain was pouring down. Heavy raindrops fell upon her, and she looked to Sunpower for protection, as always, but Sunpower wasn’t there. Buttercute had grown pass her patroness and idol. She was on her own – without anyone to look up to or seek refugee at. Alone she had to endure the hard rain.

It was raining all day. Only when the evening came the rain stopped. And when the flower peeped out from under their leaves Buttecute lay dead on the ground with her long, thin stalk broken. She had not manage to fight of the hard raindrops on her own.

The flowers gathered for funeral. Mistle-Joe was present and mourned the friend he never met. Candel-Julia was there and Bluebelly, Primrosa, Lavendoris, Forget-me-now, Gladiola. Corny-Flower was there, Anymore, Early-Start, A. Corny and – well, everyone: Walter Lily, Per-Silly, Gaza-leah, Bitter-Teeth, Grassass, John-Quill, Mr. Pontentilius et cetera.

Holly-Chock made a speach and said: ‘Poor Buttercute. She didn’t understand that the sun shines on all of us, no matter how small and insignificant we may seem.’ And thus the flowers dropped their petals and burried their friend under the colour of the rainbow.

Her story could have ended here, but she was in luck. There was still some life in one of her roots, and next spring she popped up her head again, to everybody’s great joy. She came later than usual and was shorter than before, but who cares? She was alive and could feel the warmth of the sun again. And what is more important than that?

The flower throw a ginormous party. Everybody was invited, and they all came – even Buttercute this time. There she finally met Mistle-Joe, and he smelled really wonderful. But that is another story that have to wait to another time.

/With love to J.N.

Comment. This is my very first fairy-tale. I wrote it for a friend that suffered from anorexia. Today I understand better that anorexia isn’t all about beauty and ideal, but more about our need of control in a chaotic world, where self-dicipline sometimes is the only means of will at hand. But for we Buttercute will always symbolize our capacity to sacrifice ourself for an ideal or a dream that we cannot achive. About my friend; she is feeling better today, to my everlasting joy, and are a successful doctor.

Illustration by Liusa.

This fairy tale in Swedish: Sagan om Smörblomma


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