Tag Archives: parable

The Cracked Pot – A Story

Here’s another story.  Probably needs some work.  Please let me know your thoughts.

The Cracked Pot

There once was a flowerpot.  It was medium-sized, and plain, and just a bit cracked.  It was no special color.  It wore no intricate design.  In fact, the only mark it had at all was the potter’s signature, which no one ever saw because it was hidden on the bottom.

It had received its crack at the hands of a well-meaning boy who had wanted to show the flower pot to his mother and had accidentally dropped it.  The shop keeper had put it back in its place, not noticing the tiny crack.

Day after day the flower pot sat on its shelf in the market stall, waiting for the time when someone would take it home and use it for wondrous things.

“…The cracked pot sat…waiting…for wondrous things.”

It dreamed of  being filled with rich soil and holding beautiful flowers.  It would be the backdrop, the empty canvas, upon which a rainbow of colors would be displayed.

Or, maybe, it would be painted and be the centerpiece for a wedding banquet.  Whatever was in store, the flower pot knew that it would be fabulous and admired.

One Spring day, the flower pot was taken down from its shelf by an old woman with purplish-white hair.  With her one good eye, the grandmother looked at the bottom of the flower pot and saw the potter’s mark.  “I see who made you, little flower pot.”  She smiled a sweet, though crooked-toothed, smile.  “You should do the job nicely.”

The old woman paid for the the flower pot, took it home, filled it with rich soil, planted some seeds, and added some water.  Finally, I’ll be able to do what I was meant to do! it thought as the sun set over the hill.

And the pot was happy for a while.

That night, it had the loveliest dream ever: bright red poppies and orange nasturtiums swayed in the breeze as the flower pot held their roots in place, like a balloon man with a handful of red and orange balloons floating above him.

The old woman set the vessel on her back patio and watered its soil a little each day.  A week later, sprouts began poking out of the soil.  Two weeks after that, small leaves had formed.  Two more months passed and the plants grew tall, there were fragile-looking leaves, but no blooms.

As spring began to wane, the flower pot was concerned and began to have doubts.  Where are all the bright flowers? it thought.   Am I supposed to be here?  Am I doing what I was meant to be?  Am I fulfilling my purpose–the reason I was made in the first place?

Then came a great storm.  The wind blew and blew, and knocked the flower pot on its side just like all the other pots on the patio.  But it had fallen before, so it was not surprised by the pain.  Though its crack had widened, it held on to the soil and roots all through the long night.

When the little old woman came back and set it upright once again, she patted it and said, “What a strong, brave pot you are!  Thank you for keeping my plant safe.”  When it heard the old woman’s praise, the flower pot was happy for a while.

But the storm was not over.  It continued to rain.  It rained for three days.  All the plants on the patio drowned, but the plant held by the flower pot was not, for the crack in the vessel’s side leaked all the excess water.

By the time the storm had passed and the sun had come back out, the plant in the medium-sized, plain, cracked flower pot was the only undamaged one left on the patio.

Summer had just begun when the little old woman’s  grandson came for visit.  The flower pot knew him at once; he was the boy from the market who has caused it to crack!  The boy did not recognize the pot.  He payed no attention to the plants on his grandmother’s patio.

He enjoyed playing in the backyard.  He chased grasshoppers and butterflies with a net.  He threw the ball for the dog.  He even built a fort in the bushes and constructed paper binoculars to keep watch.

Later on, the grandmother called the boy in for supper.  As he ran, pushing through the leafy walls of his fort, a hornet nest detached from a branch and fell to the ground.  The angry hornets attacked the boy and stung him many, many times before he was able to run away into the house.

The little old lady was frightened; she knew her grandson was allergic to the hornet venom.  She helped him to bed; he was already having trouble breathing.  She knew she had to act quickly before things became worse, so she pulled out all the stingers, then went to the window and looked out.  The hornets had gone.

She raced to the little, cracked flower pot and pulled off as many of its plant’s leaves as she could, then took them inside.  She crushed some of the leaves and made a concoction, which she plastered over her grandson’s stings.  The rest of the leaves were used to make a tea for the boy todrink.

After a couple days of rest, the boy was as good as new, though somewhat more careful about his surroundings.

The flower pot’s plant grew back leafier than ever, and even grew several tiny flowers.  The vessel was content.  It hadn’t saved the boy’s life.  But it had made it possible for the grandmother to use the plant to save the boy’s life.

The medium-sized flower pot had no special color, wore no intricate design, and was just a bit cracked.  It held a simple, green plant that bore no bright colored flowers.  But you know what?

The flower pot was content.