The family next door just bought a vase.

Venetian glass, they tell us. Very fancy.

Took a lot of money and effort to get here.


It looks beautiful, sitting silently on the table.

Holding lilies, roses, and tulips in nutrient water.

The maid cleans it and replaces the flowers.


Sometimes the flowers aren't even real.

The vase may as well be plastic then.

But the vase isn't plastic.


Vases get broken sometimes, you know.

Each has its own design and character.

But just a little push turns it into a pile of shards.


The glass gets cleaned off the ground.

But sometimes the shards cut your fingers.

And leave small, but visible scars.


The glass gets melted down in a furnace

The careful patterns fade away in the fire,

And are recast as new vases.


Some people try to save shards, for art, they say.

Putting them in jumbled mosaics of broken glass.

About the only differences are the colors of the pieces.


Others try and put the vases back together.

But they can barely hold water, and so

They get replaced by other vases.


We really ought to be careful with them.

Wherever they come from, they're precious.

You paid good money, so take care of them.


Some people listen, but most don't.

People push each other around playfully

Not noticing the vases they knock over.


If you put them in the cabinet, no one sees them.

If you put them on the table, they can get broken.

The solution: Just be more careful.


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