The Queen had all a ruler could want, strong and large armies at her command, a full treasury, and rich farms and orchards across her land, , and a sweet smart child to carry her dynasty forward. She also had all the finest silks to wear, and all the other fine personal luxuries that even a queen could want.
Nonetheless, the Queen found a lack she could bemoan.
“If I had balls… “ the Queen cried. And cry she did, staining her cheeks and satin sheets with salty, salty tears.
Still the Queen would not accept counsel. So she ordered her metal smiths to make her orbs. However when they presented her with solid gold balls the size of grapefruit, she cried because they were too heavy to juggle.
She then ordered farmers to grow fruit, which were perfectly round.
Now, as I noted, her realm was a tropical one. The trees bore bananas and pineapple, but these were not round. And so the Queen dipped into her treasury to buy coconut trees from the neighboring realm.
Now, as most people know, one cannot dig up a fully-grown fruit tree, and so the Queen only received young trees. She cried again because she would have to wait before the trees could bear fruit. The Coconut trees, still angry at having been carried from their homes, noted her tears with disdain.
However, the more she cried, the more impatient she became. And so when the first brown fruit appeared, still small enough to fit in the young prince’s hand she pulled on them. The Coconut trees were unwilling to simply give up their young fruit to such a grasping woman. They held tight to their fruit, as the queen pulled. And between the trees’ holding and the queens pulling, the young fruit were stretched into the shape of a tear.
When the queen was finally able to pluck them from the trees, she cried because the fruit were no longer balls. And she cried until her tears became seeds within the fruit. And then she threw the fruit onto the ground. But the fruit were stronger than the queen, and bore a new tree from each salt seed.
And that is why figs are the color of coconuts, are shaped like fat tear drops, full of seeds.
SOTD: If I had balls, the Queen Said, by DSH