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the Ear of Grain麦穗的故事

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the Ear of Grain麦穗的故事


Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm


Ages ago, when God himself walked upon earth, the ground's fertility was much GREater than it now is. At that time the ears did not return fifty or sixty-fold, but rather four to five hundred-fold. The kernels grew from the bottom to the top of the stalk. However long the stalk was, that was also the length of the ear. But it is the way of humankind, that when they have a surplus they do not value the blessings that come from God, but instead become indifferent and frivolous.

One day a woman was walking along a grain field, and her little child, who was jumping along beside her, fell into a puddle and got his clothes dirty. The mother tore off a handful of the beautiful ears of grain and cleaned his clothes with them.

the Lord was just then passing by, and when he saw her doing this, he became angry and said, “From this time forth the grain-stalk shall bear no more ears of grain. Humans are not worthy of this heavenly gift.”

the bystanders who heard this were horrified, fell to their knees, and begged him to leave at least something on the grain-stalk, even if they did not deserve it, at least for the sake of the innocent chickens, who otherwise would starve to death.

the Lord, foreseeing the misery that would come, took pity on them and granted their wish. Thus the ear at the top of the stalk remained, just as it grows today.

远古时代,当上帝亲自巡视大地时,土地的产量比现在高得多。那时,麦穗不只结五六十粒,而是四五百粒,麦秆从头到脚长满了麦粒,秆有多长,穗就有多长。然而人类是如此的浅俗,他们生活丰裕时,就不再珍惜上苍的恩赐,以致变得漫不经心、大手大脚。一天,一位妇女路经一片麦地,她的小孩在她身边跑着,一下跌进了泥坑里,弄髒了小衣服。

於是,这位母亲扯下一把漂亮的麦穗,用它擦净了衣服。

碰巧上帝从这儿经过,见到这情形他非常生气,说:“从此麦秆不再结穗,人类不配再获得上苍的赐予。”周围的人听到这话吓坏了,纷纷跪下,祈求上帝仍留些麦穗於秆上,即使人类不配这一恩赐,但是为了那些无辜的家禽,求上帝开恩,否则它们就会饿死。上帝预见到人类的苦难,可怜他们,答应了这一请求。於是麦穗留了下来,就像现在生长的这样子。


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