“Ouch!”, I yelped as I begin sucking on my thumb.
The tip of the embroidery needle was glistening with a crimson gleam. I look down disheartened at the sorry-looking handkerchief that had crumbled onto the leaf-carpeted floor. The flower that I was attempting to form had pitifully bunched into the likeness of a tumbleweed rolling by in a quiet desert.
The scuttling rabbits that were playing under the combs of feathery moss had paused their game. They seemed to have found my failure particularly unacceptable as they had stood at a distance watching with disapproval written all over their faces.
“I need a drink”, I sighed dejectedly.
I got up from the mossy pillow of rocks and headed in search for the river. The twigs crunched gently underneath with each step that I took, slowly comforting me. This oak-brown forest was a sylvan Shangri la, steeped in plushness and opulence. The simpering wind engulfed me with the forest’s palliative cologne of pines, honeysuckle and a hint of saccharine jasmine. Wild mushrooms dotted the moss-veiled path under the canopy of trees that were fortresses of wood. This morning, the pulsing heart of the forest had called out to me, seducing me with a poignant ballad of its antediluvian song. Thus, I have found myself seeking solace under its watchful guardianship.
Manoeuvring by suede-soft chrysanthemums, I hear the faint tinkling of a stream.
“What should I sew instead? Kites? Apples? ” I murmured to myself, “or mayb-” my foot contacted a jagged stone. Ugh… Why am I so clumsy? Wait. Oh no. A wretched stickiness flooded my shoe.
Scurrying squirrels searching for food on a lichen-encrusted bark had paused their search. Pity seems to be their countenance.
“I wish I wasn’t so imperfect!”, I growled miserably as I hobbled to the banks of the algae-scented river. I caught my reflection in the water. My braids have all came a loose and frizzed from the humidity of the woods. The pale cream dress seems to have ashen my glowing complexion, my face a panorama of pain, frustrations and grit.
The school of angelfish that were gliding by seemed to have paused momentarily. They appeared startled to have seen me. Poor things. Bless, their hearts.
“I wish I was perfect! If only there was a fairy god mother that could transform me!”, I cry out in frustration, my voice venerating through the thick foliage.
“No need to shout dearie”, a lilting, beautiful voice called out.
I saw her. Dressed in a long dark gown of the richest maroon, the golden hem tattered and stained with dried mud from being dragged across the cool soft earth, she smiled. She seems so fragile and yet so alive, an oxymoron indeed. Her skin was paper thin, almost translucent, her face etched with age spots. Her gorgeous long pepper-and-salt hair was piled into an updo of curls of the late Victorian era. Her eyes twinkled with wisdom and kindness.
“What is with young ones these days and shouting? It must be those earphones that you all are constantly using. Ruining your ears, I tell you”, she chastised kindly.
“Sorry, but are you lost madam?”, I enquired concerned that she might have wandered too far into the woods by herself.
“Madam?! In all my 967 years, I have never been called that!”, this eccentric fiery woman cried in amused offence as she placed a delicate hand across her bosom.
“967 years! No way! That’s preposterous!”
“Yes way! You called, I answered, what more do you want child?”, she giggled heartily.
“F-airy godmother? But you are not real! Don’t you just exist in children fairy-tales?”, I enquired doubtfully, my nose wrinkling at her direction. “Oh, a doubting Thomas, oh I have met the likes of you!”, she beamed joyfully and as she snapped her fingers beautiful bell flowers sprouted from around my feet where there was none.
My jaw fell.
“Now tell me child, what do want from me? How could I help you with my magic?” she urged me as she moved to caress my cheeks softly. “I need to become perfect! I am just so tired of how different and incapable I seem. I wished I was incredible in all that I do and always be at the top of my game, then maybe I wouldn’t dislike myself so much”, I whispered quietly, as tears threatened to fall.
“Oh, my sweet! What a request child! Magic is powerful but it has its own limitations. It does not change something that is already perfect”, she enlightened, warmth evident into those sparkling amber orbs.
“But I am not perfect!”
“Oh yes, you are!”
“Have you seen me? Look at this finger and look at this foot! Nothing I do turns out well”, I interjected pessimistically.
“Hush now child and listen to me. You see those little songbirds perched upon that mighty tree”, she directed with her long graceful fingers. “Look at the various shades of yellow and grey feathers, some are more yellow and others greyer and yet they are all so beautiful in their songs!”, assured fairy godmother.
Sensing my disbelief, she led me by the hand to a rose bush nearby. “Look at the various roses and tell me which one is the most beautiful! They are of various shades, some a sweet pale cerise and others a vibrant ruby! Some roses have various shades and folds of petals, yet all of them are intricately elegant and adds authentic beauty to each individual rose. No one rose is the same and that adds exquisiteness to this bush”, reassured the fiery woman who was now dragging me eagerly to a small clearing among the canopy of the trees.
The lustrous rays of the sun were filtering down in seams of gold and silver. The sprawling trees were washed with a tender glow, the leaves seem to twinkle green and gold. “Look at those clouds! Some are wispy, silky like that of a painter’s brush and oh, look at that one! It is so puffy and looks like a puppy! See, there seems to be imperfection in everything because everything isn’t the same form, colours, and consistency but that is what makes it perfect! Perfect Imperfections!” proclaimed fairy godmother who held me in a tight embrace.
“You are so beautiful, all your imperfections that you think you have are perfect! What matters most is that you accept yourself both the good and the bad and work towards being happier, and contented. We are all a work in progress. Be kind to yourself!”, consoled the sweet fairy who seems to be on the brink of tears.
“Why are you tearful, dear fairy god mother?”, I enquired softly as realisation dawned upon me.
“Because you now understand magic, sweet child”, she whispered gently and dissolved into coils of vaporous mist.
To accomplish the perfect perfection, a little imperfection helps. – Dejan Stojanovic