One of the best things about childhood is we get to hear amazing stories from our parents, grandparents, elder siblings and so many others. And we listen to them with all the concentration that our little brains can deliver.
So last evening I happened to listen to a song that reminded me of my favourite folktale, the one that my mother used to narrate when I refused to eat. I was a very disobedient child who didn’t eat anything (leaving chocolate of course), so she used to lure me with all those stories she knew.
This one was from the famous book called “Thakurmar Jhuli” in bengali and “Grandmother’s Tales” in English. It was first published in 1907 by the honourable author Dakshinaranjan Mitra Majumdar. It’s my all time favourite. It’s called “Saat Vai Champa” which in english means “Seven Champa Brothers“. Here goes the story:
Once upon a time there lived a king who was very unhappy because he was without an heir. Oneday, a priest gave him mangoes and asked him to feed them to his seven wives after which they would bear him children. The first six of his wives could not give birth as they ate the fruit with disbelief but the youngest wife gave birth to octuplets while the king was on a voyage! Seven sons and one daughter. Meanwhile the other six jealous wives buried the seven babies in the royal garden who later by the grace of mother Nature blossomed into seven champa flowers. Then they placed seven puppies beside the unconscious queen. But when they were busy burying the seven sons, they missed the eighth child, a girl who was born a little later. This gave the maid a chance to take her away and named her Parul.
Later as Parul learnt the truth of her seven brothers, she sneaked into the royal garden to meet them. There she sang a soulful, heartwarming song to rise them up. She reunites her banished mother with the king and her brothers with immense effort and you can already guess what happened to the wicked six wives.
It’s such an emotional story, what can I say. I love it and keep thinking about it from time to time. And there are millions other beautiful stories from around the world that are equally fascinating!
Did you love this story?
And what’s your favourite folktale/fairytale/childhood classic? Please do share, I’d love to listen… ☺