Letter to Saint-Exupery

Dear St-Ex

 

I was picking raspberries in my garden, and was grumbling.

– Damned squirrel!  Once again, he has eaten all my raspberries! He’s a real plague!

– Why do you say that?

Thunderstruck, I looked behind me and saw him. Golden hair, floppy scarf…

– Why do you say that!? You are all alike, in this World! You think everything had been created for you. That doesn’t make sense! Everything is for everyone: humans, animals, trees, flowers and even stones! And squirrels are very useful! Yourself, you spend hours and hours to look at him and take photos and videos! And you think he’s a plague because he had eaten ten raspberries?

He was red with anger

– I don’t really think that, Little Prince!

– You know my name!!

– I have read your friends’ book!

– Do you know him? Good! I’m coming here to give him some news about my sheep and my rose. Where is he?

– Very far away..

– Are you going to meet him soon? So, tell him..

– Listen! Your friend had passed away many years ago: his plane crashed…

– I’m not surprised. I told him his plane was just a gadget! So, he’s living on another planet.  And I have to look for it. Where can I find a snake?

– We don’t have any poisonous snakes in Quebec Province. But why not to stay a couple of days on the Earth?  You could perhaps meet  your tamed fox

– Does a fox live longer than a man?

– I tried to change his mind

– Soon wheat will be ripe. It should be the same color as your hair.

– Does a fox live longer than a man?

– I remembered Little Prince never let go of a question,

– No. He doesn’t.

– Ah!  I am wondering if my fox and my friend are on the same planet. There are so many planets in the universe!   Where did I fall down? Where is the desert?

– We don’t have any deserts but we have so many, beautiful forests.

– Are they far away?

– Not really. Come with me!

 

– What’s that?

– My car.

– Can it fly?

– No, it rolls!

– Are you pulling my leg?

He got into, put his head outside and reminded silent until walking into the woods.

– How wonderful! Flowers are so pretty, birds have so nice songs, and it smells so good! Too bad that my planet is so small, I might plant a forest! But I’m truly busy enough with the baobabs!

– He walked through ferns and goldenrods for a while.

– Fifteen minutes later, I looked for him. He was talking with a bird:

– Please, take me back to my planet.

– I can’t! I don’t fly high enough!

– How come? You’re an eagle! And everybody knows that eagle wings give the sky a pat.

– I’m neither a bald-eagle nor a golden-eagle! I’m a fish-eagle. I use to plunge into the water to catch fish.

– Ah!

He was so disappointed… I took him by the hand and guided him towards the lake. I knew he loved sunsets and the evening was falling down. You should have seen him jumping and applauding wildly:aurore

– There are two sunsets here! One in the sky, one in the lake!  It must be great when one is pretty sad. Definitely, Earth is a terrific planet!

When it got dark, I heard him laughing, just as a peal of bells

– Look at that! It’s much prettier than on the lamplighter’s planet! These flies have their own  lamp into their belly! Look at this one: she just turns off. Good morning! And she is switching on: Good evening! And all together, they dance the lamp farandole!

– At the edge of the wood, he took a flat moss-covered stone, put his head on and fell asleep. I looked at him for a long time and fell asleep too.

At dawn, I woke up with a strange feeling. I jumped to my feet. The Little Prince was gone. Mad with worry I looked for him and found him near the lake. He was eating a mushroom, and had another one in his left hand.

– What are you doing, Little Prince? That’s a poisonous mushroom! It’s an Amanita phalloide!

– You knew you wouldn’t have come! Yesterday, I met a snake who told me to pick this white mushroom, and eat it. You know, I’m in charge of my sheep and my rose. I have to go back. In a while, I will look for my fox and friend’s planet too.

He just had time to see the sunrise. Sorry, the two sunrises: one in the sky, one in the lake. And slowly, he fell down and disappeared. For a moment, I had thought I dreamed. But, on the sand, I could see a light child-body print and half an eaten white mushroom.

 

As requested, I write this letter to comfort you. Perhaps, soon, you will see him. Can you tell him what I meant to say but didn’t have time. Thank him for his marvelous gift. He had given you five hundred million little stars as five hundred million little bells. He gave me the lamp-farandole. In summer nights, I look at fireflies and I dance with them. Everyone thinks I’m insane.  Whatever?

Thanks, Saint-Ex, for having written the Little Prince’s story. Without you, I’d never have been able to recognize him. I’d never have been worthy of my Squirrel friend.  I’d never have danced with fireflies. And of course, I’d never have noticed the both sunsets on my lake.

On your far away planet, Saint-Ex, be very happy.

GF

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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