TODAY -

The Golden Parrot : Sanagi Tenawa
- From a book by N. Bemni Singha -

James Oinam *

Sanagi Tenawa  :: An Illustration by James Oinam
Pay Nareckpi :: An Illustration by James Oinam



Once upon a time, there lived a godly golden parrot in a land of rocks. Under the influence of its spell all the trees of the land could talk and move like animals. The fame of the parrot spread far and wide.

In a distant kingdom lived a brave and wise prince. He also heard about this parrot and resolved to bring the parrot to his kingdom.

So in the middle of the night, he rode off for the parrot with his friend, who was the son of a minister, without telling anyone because the prince was sure the king would stop them from such dangerous mission.

For three full moons, they rode continuously and reached the land of rocks. They were completely amazed to see the rocks and the talking trees.

Wandering around, they came across an entrance to a cave. They were sure the parrot must be inside the cave. They got down from their horses and tied them to nearby trees.

The prince, walking ahead of his friend, was about to enter when he heard a loud voice.

'Stop prince, I know you have come for the parrot.'

Stunned, the two looked around and saw a tree monster at the entrance.

'You must answer my three questions before you enter. If you answer incorrectly, you will turn into stones like these princes who have turned into stones, or you can still return back to your home without the parrot,' continued the tree monster.

'We have come for the golden parrot, and we are not going back without the parrot. Ask your questions,' replied the prince.

The tree monster asked his first question, 'Who is the happiest man alive?'

The prince replied, 'One who owes no debt to anyone and who is healthy and free from any illness.'

The tree monster continued with his second question, 'What are the main qualities of a king?'

'A king should conduct according to the wishes of the people, should take care of the poor and destitute, and should treat everyone equally,' answered the prince.

The tree monster was satisfied. And he asked his final question, 'Name the gods one can see one's own eyes?'

'One's birth parents are one's gods that they can see with their eyes,' replied the prince.

The tree monster praised the prince for his wisdom.

'Now you can enter the cave. I have been waiting for long for someone who could answer my questions. I must leave this place too,' saying this the tree monster vanished.

Upon entering the cave, they found the golden parrot sitting on a golden plate.

'I have been under the captivity of the tree monster. I am glad to see you,' said the parrot.

'We have come to take you to the palace. But first, tell me how can we change the stones back to princes,' asked the prince.

'You will have to sprinkle water on them from that golden pond,' pointed the parrot to the pond.

The prince fetched water from the pond in a utensil and sprinkled the water over the stones. The stones came back to life. The princes thanked the prince and returned to their kingdoms.

The prince and his friend too returned to their horses with the parrot. As the parrot left the land, the fruit trees and bushes who were singing and dancing became still again.

At the palace, the parrot was installed on a golden throne. All the trees and vegetation of the kingdom became alive. They sang and danced in honour of the parrot and the prince.

And everyone in the kingdom lived happily ever after.


Source Details:

Translated from 'Sanagi Tenawa' story in the collected work Funga Wari, Vol. 3
Author: N. Bemni Singha
Book Illustrator: N. Nongdon Sana
Publisher: Naharol Khorjei Thaugallup Jaribon
Year of Publication: 1999




* James Oinam wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer can be contacted at jamesoinam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on August 31, 2018.



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