The Tale of the Turbaned Tiger

Once upon a time, in a kingdom far away,

There was a beautiful tiger princess.

And every prince from near and far

Tried their best to win her heart.


The tiger princess was kind and good,

Sweet, soft-spoken, and serene:

The best bride that could possibly be imagined

For a noble, worthy prince.


But the sweet tiger princess did not respond

To the gold-laden gifts she was given.

She did not care for riches and wealth

If they were not accompanied by true love.


In a village in the jungle, in a poor and crumbling hut,

A peasant tiger looked at the stars and allowed himself to dream.

His paws were rough from working,

But his heart was fresh and young.


The peasant tiger gathered courage

And travelled to the palace.

He wished to meet the sweet tiger princess,

If only to see her once.


He picked pink and purple flowers along the road;

He would give them to the princess as a gift.

Then he wound a turban around his head

To pose as the elaborate crown of a prince.


The turbaned tiger arrived at the palace:

Rooms upon rooms of rubies and riches,

Emeralds, sapphires, diamonds, gold...

And he knew that his quest would be pointless.


He rushed into the garden and sat by a fountain

And cried as he watched his watery reflection.

Why would a wonderful princess care about him?

He was just a poor turbaned tiger.


After a time, either minutes or hours,

The sweet tiger princess wished to go to the garden.

Perhaps she could hear or perhaps she could feel

The tinkling tears of a turbaned tiger.


She wandered the mazes of roses and fruit trees

And found by the fountain a turbaned tiger.

She knelt by his side and patted his shoulder,

And whispered so gently that he needn't cry.


He looked up in surprise as he hastily rose, and said,

"Don't you think it's stupid -- the flowers and the turban?"

But she laughed and shook her sweet tiger head.

"I like the turban most of all," and took him by the hand.


Together, they ran through the golden palace,

Impossibly wild, free and young;

And somewhere deep in her sweet princess heart,

She felt the blooming flame of love.


Years passed, even decades and centuries,

And this story faded with time.

But if you go to the garden of a certain golden palace,

There are fruit trees and fountains forgotten forever.


There, if you search -- if you really want to --

You will find a conmemorating statue

Of a sweet tiger princess

And the turbaned tiger she loved.

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