TOPAZ Issue 11 / 2004
Sustainability and Spirituality
Self determined or determined from outside or elswhere
7 suggestions for self-reflection as a start to each new day
Mr. Green, The Greengrocer
What is honour?
Poetry - A window to mind making
Why ask questions?
The human mosaic of reponse: The purpose of human life?
Waunifor, a tranquil rural Centre in Beautiful West Wales
The "International Colourful Festival of Arts" in Cologne
Dido & Aeneas

Mr Green, The Greengrocer

“Have I told you the story of Mr Green the greengrocer?” asked the Night Watchman one quiet evening.

There was once a man who was a greengrocer who had built a great reputation far and wide. His name was Green, Mr Green, and he had held a stall in the market for thirty years. Early every morning Mr Green could be found arranging his fresh fruit and vegetables, displaying them, as always, with great care and consideration.

Now not surprisingly, Mr Green had built his reputation from more than selling fresh produce. What really attracted people was the extra that he put into what he did; it was the extra that caused people to buy from Mr Green. A person can arrange a stall, or they can arrange it with essence - that is extra.

Eventually Mr Green retired and stopped doing what had given him such pleasure for so many years. No longer did he get up early every morning to set out his stall. His life had changed abruptly and he now lived in a vacuum in which he had caught up with himself. People no longer visited him and his life simply began to fade away.

Mr Green was of course the last to see this, but he had a wife who saw what was happening and knew what was missing. One morning she sat him down and said, “Your life can begin again if you will do just one thing”.

She told him, “When you get up in the morning, go downstairs, and at the table arrange some fruit and vegetables in the way you have for so many years. Then sit and have a cup of tea and wait. It is your signal to yourself that you are open to extra. It is the extra that you have always invited to share your life. You have become departed from what you love, departed from your friends. Without them you are lost, and without you they have no expression”.

So he listened to his wife and did what she suggested. Every morning at the kitchen table he would arrange the fruit and vegetables. And again his life became very rich and content. Soon the many people whom he had come to know over the years began to visit him again, as his personal magic returned - the magic that had been part of his life at his greengrocer's stall.

From 'Tales of the Night Watchman' reproduced by kind permission of the copyright holder © Gemstone Press 1993

Copyright © 2001-2022 The Template Foundation, all rights reserved.