There lived a naughty boy in a village. Each day the boy spent hours playing near the large, old mango tree. He would make a crown of its leaves and then proudly declare, “I am the king of the forest!” The tree loved to have the boy visit it and play in its branches.
Time passed, the boy grew to be a man, but to the tree he would always be a boy. Gradually he stopped coming to the tree. Then one day, to the tree’s great delight he saw the boy approaching. The boy said he needed money, for without money he couldn’t marry. “Take my mangoes, they are the best variety, sell them and you will have more than enough money” offered the generous tree. The boy didn’t wait another minute.
The boy stripped the tree of every single mango, sold them and got married. After a lapse of time, the boy came back again, sullen and complaining, “I need a house, can you give me a house?”
“Take my strong branches and build yourself a house and make your furniture too,” said the loving tree. So the boy hacked down all the branches leaving the tree with just its trunk. Slowly the tree aged without its branches and leaves. It felt lonely and sad. It missed the boy.
Years went by. The lonely old tree often thought of the boy and then one day the boy came again not quite as young as before. “I need a boat,” he said to the tree. “I want to travel, to see something of the world.”
“Take my trunk, it’s all I have left, but it will make you a sound boat,” said the tree.
The thoughtless boy took the trunk made his boat and sailed away without even once thinking about the tree and what he had done to it.
Finally the boy became a tired old man, and now all he could think of was his faithful friend, the tree, “Come, boy”, called the tree. “Rest here on my stump, it makes a good seat, we can be happy together.” And the boy gratefully, for once sat down in the warm sunshine on the tree stump. And the tree was happy.
Why was the tree happy?
Answer the following questions:
(1) Make a list of the things that help a tree to live.
(ii) List all the things the boy said he needed.
(iii) The boy looked sullen and complaining. Why?
(iv) What happened at last ?
(v) How did the boy spend his time?
(vi) Who was more loving – the boy or the tree? Why?