In which the strawberry plants behave in an unusual manner

I wasn't late for work, but I was definitely heading out of the house on time when I heard the strawberry bushes clucking.


On Haiku Farm, the wind whistles, the trees whisper, and my heart sings. However, the strawberry bushes have always been pretty quiet.


I remembered a story that I like to tell, about the African trickster-hero Anansi the spider.

One day, Anansi carves a little hole in a melon and climbs inside to eat the sweet, juicy melon. He eats and eats and eats, and when he is finally done eating, he has gotten too fat to fit through the hole. He is stuck inside the melon! So, he sits down to wait to get skinny again.

Before Anansi can get skinny, he hears the gardener outside the melon, working in the garden. Anansi decides to play a trick on the gardener, and so he starts talking. The gardener hears the voice, and thinks that the melon is talking--how extraordinary! Surely a talking melon must be shown to the king!

On the road to show the king, the gardener meets up with all kinds of other folks, and they all hear the "talking melon" and want to go along to show the king this amazing thing. It is a great huge group that finally arrives, bearing the melon with Anansi inside.

They bow down low, and present the melon to the king, who invites the melon to say something. Anansi, inside the melon, doesn't say a word. The king speaks to the melon again, asking it to talk, but Anansi stays quiet. Finally the king, feeling foolish for talking to a melon, picks up the fruit and flings it--miles and miles the melon flies through the air until it bumps and rolls and ends up in the very same garden where it started.

The gardener is humiliated, and swears never to listen to melons again, but Anansi, who has finally gotten skinny enough to get out of the melon, crawls away, ready to play more tricks.

I examine the foliage carefully, thinking that I might find a tricky spider but that I was more likely to find:

Minerva Louise XII!

She seemed pretty happy to see me. I reached down and picked her up, and carried her back down to St Hens. Eleven was VERY happy to see her!

I reunited the naughty hen with the nice one, and headed back to my truck...still not running late, but needing to get on the road, when I had a thought and checked the strawberry beds one more time.

Sure enough.

The strawberry plants produced fabulous strawberries last spring but this was the very first time I have ever seen them produce an egg.

How extraordinary....perhaps I should go and tell the king!


  1. Tell the king, indeed! Congrats on being the first to make me chuckle today.

  2. Thanks for the wonderful story(ies)!

  3. Hahaha, too cute!

    Now I'm getting curious. Are the Anansi stories conveying morals, or are they just funny stories for kids? All I can get from this one is "don't listen to talking fruit" - which is a good moral, but unlikely to be used in daily life unless you're eating mushrooms!

  4. FUNDER: sometimes the Anansi stories are teaching tales, and sometimes they are just fun. Who would keep listening to a storyteller who ONLY told "moral-of-the-story" tales--not me, for sure.

    Probably this one is for fun, although certainly I can see a bit of "if it seems too good to be true it probably is" embedded in this story!


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