Sunday, September 25, 2011

Frog King

Image source: Wikipedia
Reading Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part II, I was struck by a line in Act 1, "Past and to come seems best, things present worst."  Since I read multiple books simultaneously, just as I work on multiple canvases, I just read the reference to the Frog King story in Goethe's Reineke Fuchs (Reynard the Fox).  Goethe's version of the Frog King was a truncated reference only.  For the full version, I employed my memory of childhood fables my father used to read me, such as Aesop and Krylov, both wrote "The Frogs who Begged for a Tsar or a King".

Image source: Wikipedia
It was said that in the peaceful realm of frogs, the inhabitants became bored and concerned that they ought to have a ruler.  They prayed to the god for such a ruler.  God couldn't endure their croaking therefore consented.  God sent them a piece of log and the frogs became ecstatic and started to worship the log as their ruler.  However, it didn't last long.  Soon, they became emboldened in front of the immobile king/tsar and ever so obliging ruler.  They even climbed atop of their king/tsar.  They were dissatisfied again with this do-nothing ruler.  Once again, they appealed to God.  God agreed again; but this time, he sent them a stork as their king/tsar, who hated and ate the frogs at will.  The frogs had to live in constant fear ever since.

Quite uncannily, these two references closely mirror today's reality.  For quite a while, we craved for a ruler who would give us some directions and a purpose of life.  As if our prayers had been answered, out of nowhere, came Barak Obama, striking right poses, as if ready to lead us out of wildness.  However, almost three later, we discovered, that he is but a piece of useless log.

Therefore, we croak aloud again; this time, seeking someone who would act.  Just be aware what we are wishing for.  If we had a Republican president, I guarantee, that he or she would become the merciless stork to us helpless frogs.


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