Tulip in crisis
It came as quite a shock. It never complained. It was in the best of health. Its bulb had just yielded flowers for the seventh year in a row. It stood in full bloom on the windowsill of an elderly couple, both of whom were retired teachers. The night before it had thoroughly fertilized its pistils, after which it had a good night’s sleep. But at five in the morning – flowers are notoriously early risers – it flung itself down into the street from the fourth story window.
At first the police speculated that someone had pushed it with intent to kill. They questioned the retired teachers, but they denied the charges. They insisted that they watered it regularly, loved it, and shed profuse tears over its untimely death. The lieutenant-colonel living below them substantiated their testimony, and in a matter of days, the charges against the elderly couple were dropped.
The suicide-bent tulip was purple and introverted by nature. According to the people in the neighborhood, it lived a secluded life, so it couldn’t have suffered from despair or disillusionment. Why, then, did it want to throw its life away?
The answer came one week later, when the lieutenant-colonel’s wife, who was doing her spring cleaning, found the tulip’s farewell note on the balcony. She took it upstairs to the fourth floor, where the old man read the garbled lines out loud.
“When you read this note, I will no longer be among the living. Dear sir, dear Aunt Irma, please forgive me. I couldn’t help it. I didn’t want to be a tulip any more.”
“What could it have wanted to be, poor thing,” Aunt Irma asked.
“It didn’t say,” her husband responded.
“A tulip,” Aunt Irma said with a shake of her head. “The very idea!”