Once upon a time there was a beautiful, comely garden. The garden was nothing less than a heavenly, sublime piece of land on the otherwise barren, arid region. It housed innumerable creatures, plants, trees, insects, birds, small animals; all of whom granted the garden it’s enticing, bewitching grandeur and serenity. The halcyon garden thus got its name- Baagh-e- Arzoo– the Garden of Wishes; for it resembled Eden and offered such peace and tranquility that everyone wishes for.

Every object, creature and organism that surfaced in the Baagh was extraordinary and marvellous in its own way. But everything was put into shade by one particular being the newly born Rose. She had just opened her eyes to the magical land of beauty but it seemed as though it was she who was the benefactor of all that glory and majesty. She was so little, and somewhat confused and hesitant to have become a part of such a big, wide world. She was wrapped in her green sepals that were accomplishing the crucial task of protecting this newcomer. Despite their utmost efforts, they were unwillingly revealing the blood-red of the petals inside. The soft, red petals were peeping shyly out of the cover of their protecting sepals. The Garden of Wishes seemed to be boasting off its pride in the form of the Rose.

The next day, to the Rose’s immense pleasure and sheer surprise, she got a visitor; a young boy of merely 10 years of age. His fair, round face was becoming crimson from all the excitement that he got from just looking at the Rose. She did not mind such attention at all; rather she was enjoying and cherishing it. The boy claimed that he loved her so much and was ready to do anything to have her always with him. The Rose believed him for she was just an innocent, little being and did not know deception or falsehood. She began to savour his remarks, attention and continued to grow into a bigger bud. But poor Rose had yet had to learn about misery and heartbreak. So one morning, the boy left; uttering harsh words that cut deep into the Rose’s heart. He had taken out the frustration and anger that he received from his parents’ fights on her, leaving her disconsolate and dejected. The blows of his severe, cutting words gave her sharp, invisible wounds. The Rose mourned and grieved over her lost love for a long time but eventually learned to focus her excruciating pain to grow. And thus, the once tiny bud now bloomed into an alluring and most appealing Rose.

The Garden blossomed with all its might for now the Rose was at its par of beauty and magnificence. The Rose had learnt her lesson; she kept herself steadfast and haughty; for many claimed to love her just to get a moment of solace with her. But life was not done teaching her yet. So on a bright day, when the sun showed mercy with its heat, and the winds endowed the atmosphere with their slight, welcoming chill, there came an admirer; a fair, tall, handsome one just in his early twenties. His elaborate looks, impressive dignity and unfaltering eloquence stole her heart. She forgot all about her misery and hurting pain of the past and kept waiting for him regularly, just to be with him, to listen to him intently as he spoke in his soft, engaging voice. A Rose without a lover is incomplete, she told him timidly, and you, My Love, complete me.

He loved her like no one else could ever do; she fell for him like no one else could ever. They were inseparable; the complemented each other in most inexplicable ways. When in the Garden, he had eyes for no one but her. When away from him, her heart ached and longed for anyone but him. Every day, the thought of being united with him propelled her to carry on her journey of life. He named her Gul-e-Arzoo-the flower of wishes. She indeed was the fruit of everyone’s wishes; for everyone desired her. The two of them were envied by all other creatures that strode on the earth they lived on. The envy proved to be a bad omen for them.

The Rose was destined to experience pain and agony; Gul-e-Arzoo was cursed to be desired by everyone but to BE no one’s. Such was written in fate; for she was again heartbroken as she got separated from her Beloved, this time due to unfavourable, rough Winds that blew hard and disintegrated her very being. The poor, fragile Rose lost its battle of love and life and its once soft, red petals now rot in the barren soil.


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