The Good Little Pumpkin

An OrsiniFamily.net Story

 

 

There was once a pumpkin that lived on a farm with a very kind farmer and lots of other pumpkins. The farmer was a good man who loved his pumpkins very much, and he always spoke kindly to them. He came to see them every day, and when he visited them, he taught them about being their very best.

Every morning, the farmer sang sweet songs to his pumpkins. Then, after lunch, he told them to sit very still and soak up the sunshine. Finally, as it began to get dark each evening, the kind farmer came to his pumpkins and told them to drink up water through their roots very slowly. (It's kind of like drinking through a straw when pumpkins drink water through their roots.) Then, when it was time to go to bed, he came again and told them all to go to sleep and get plenty of rest so that they could grow up big and strong.

When they were all little, the pumpkins were very good and loved each other. It was perfect! But the pumpkins began to grow, and as they did, they all changed. Each one got stronger, fatter, and could do more things. Everyone except our sweet little pumpkin. Instead of growing bigger, she stayed small, and when all of the other pumpkins began staying up late or would not to soak up the sun or drink their water, our little green pumpkin kept being good. She obeyed the farmer even when everyone else didn't.

Now, when it was time to sit quietly and soak up the sun, only she did it. When it was time to drink up the water, she sucked it up nice and slow, just as he showed her. And when it was dark and the farmer said, "Sleep, little ones..." our pumpkin would smile and let her body relax, and soon she would be fast asleep. She was really glad when he told her that she was special and pretty. She wanted to make the farmer proud. It was a nice life, and the pumpkin was happy because the farmer loved her. After a while, though, the other pumpkins began to be jealous of how much the farmer liked her, and then they began to pick on the good little pumpkin.

"Ooh, there's the good little baby! She never does anything wrong...she's so GOOOOOD!" they hissed. When the farmer said it, all of that sounded nice. But now, they were saying it to her in a new way--in a mean way. She didn't feel proud when THEY said it...she felt embarrassed and sad. Why do they have to pick on me? she wondered.

For the next few days, life was hard for our little pumpkin. All of the other pumpkins laughed at her when she sat very still and quiet, soaking up the sun. They all wanted to talk and laugh and say mean things about her, and none of them sat still. And when it was time to drink water, she kept drinking very slowly, while they gulped it down so that they could go back and play.

After a while, the pumpkins began to turn orange. Every day, the farmer came and said, "We're going to have delicious pies this year. Yes, indeed, they will be lovely!" All of the pumpkins were proud of that. They all wanted to be eaten and enjoyed by the farmer. But everyone knew that there was something better.

The little pumpkins had heard the story of the seed pumpkin. Each year, the farmer chose a very special pumpkin that he didn't cook. That pumpkin was always the biggest and most beautiful pumpkin of them all. The farmer would choose this big pumpkin, take out all of the seeds, and plant those seeds for next year’s harvest. The good little pumpkin’s mother had been the seed pumpkin last year. This year, her biggest dream was to be chosen, too.

Deep down, though, she knew she wouldn't be chosen. After all that she had tried, and after working so hard, she was still the very smallest pumpkin. She was also the only one left who was green. All of the other pumpkins had turned orange by now. She was really sad about that. She knew that she still looked like a baby!  She knew it because the other pumpkins said it every day.

A few days after the other pumpkins began picking on her, the farmer came over to her and said, "You remind me of your mother. You'll surprise us all yet." She didn't understand what he could mean, but she knew that he loved her, and that made her happy. The little green pumpkin smiled and decided that even if she never was big or orange, she was glad that she had been good, because the farmer was happy with her. She went to sleep glad that night, and each day until the big harvest party, she was still happy.

After a while, the other pumpkins stopped picking on her. It was a nice change, and she liked being able to speak nicely together. Also, she began to get bigger, and one day she even started turning orange. She was glad to be liked and to finally be growing up, but she didn't stop being good, even when they asked her to play during sun-soaking time. "Nope, I have to do what the farmer says," she would answer, and nobody laughed at her. Wow!

The harvest party finally came, and the farmer was very busy in his house. He didn't even come out to speak to them that morning. Still, they weren't sad. They were too busy feeling excited because this was the day that the seed pumpkin would be chosen. "We all know who that's going to be," one of the pumpkins said, and everyone agreed. "Who?" said the good little pumpkin, but no one would answer her. They just smiled at her.

The farmer finally came out to them before the harvesters came. Bending over, he cut our pumpkin's roots free and picked her up, saying, "Your time has come, my sweet baby." In his arms, the pumpkin felt very happy. She guessed that he planned to make an early pie out of her, and she was proud of being chosen. Happily, she bounced against his chest as he carried her into the house.

Then, when the pumpkin looked around the house, she began to say to herself, "My other was here, too, on the day when she was chosen as the seed pumpkin. I wish I could have been like her." Suddenly, she missed her mother, and she began to cry. "Oh, Mom, I'm sorry I didn't get to make you proud. I'm sorry that they didn't choose me to be the seed pumpkin ... I tried to be good, but I’m not big or pretty enough."

The farmer carried her by a wall that had pictures of all the other seed pumpkins he had chosen. She saw her grandfather, her mother, and finally, it looked like another picture of her mother again. But then, she realized it wasn't a picture! It was a mirror! She looked just like her mother, and she suddenly knew what was happening ...

The farmer took her into the kitchen and laid her on the counter. Smiling, he said, "You were chosen because you wanted to be good and you love to obey. I knew that you would grow bigger and brighter than the others because you were the best one inside, and when a pumpkin is good inside, it will someday turn pretty outside. Smiling, the pumpkin realized that being good had been very hard for her, but it was worth it … and she was very, very, happy.

When the other pumpkins saw her carried away, they all were sorry that they had been bad to her. Now it was too late to be chosen for the seed pumpkin, but they could still choose to be good. Right then, they decided to be better little pumpkins and they began to sip slowly through their roots. Because of their changed hearts, they made yummy pies when the farmer picked them that evening to make pies. And when the farmer remembered the party, he was glad that the pies had been delicious. But most wonderful of all had been his beautiful seed pumpkin. "It was the best one we ever had!" he said.

THE END

 

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