On Your Hands Essay

362 Words2 Pages
here was once a widower who had two bright, young daughters who were so curious about everything that they kept asking questions. Questions, questions, questions. And though their father was able to answer some of their questions, there were many that he just couldn’t answer. And he began to feel that they needed someone who could. So he decided to send them to live with the wise old man who lived on the hill. Which was what you did in those days. So off went the two girls, to live with the wise old man who lived on the hill. And they continued to ask questions. Questions, questions, questions. But unlike their father, the wise old man always had an answer. He could answer every single question they asked. At first, this was delightful. But as time went by, the girls began to find it a little irritating that, no matter what they asked, the old man always had an answer. And as time went by some more, they began to find it very irritating. So they began to search for ways to catch him out. One day, one sister ran up to the other with a beautiful, bright blue butterfly in her hands. ‘I’ve got this great idea,’ she said. ‘I’ve just found this butterfly, and I thought I’d hide it in my hands and go and ask the old man whether it’s alive or dead. If he says it’s dead, I’ll open my hands and let it fly out. If he says it’s alive, I’ll give a quick, hard squeeze and open my hands and say “Wrong, it’s dead!” So whatever he says, he can’t win.’ ‘Brilliant!’ said her sister, and off they went to find the wise old man. Eventually they found him, sitting on a rock under a eucalyptus tree. The girls rushed up. ‘Oh wise old man,’ said the sister with the butterfly, ‘I’ve got this butterfly in my hands, and I want you to tell me if it’s alive or dead.’ The wise old man looked at the two sisters for a moment and thought. Then he smiled. ‘My dears,’ he said, ‘the butterfly is . . . ‘

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