Before we begin – yes, all puns are intended.
Remember Humpty Dumpty? The tale of the egg who dared to sit on the wall that completes every collection of Mother Goose’s Nursery Rhymes chock full of….surprise, surprise, nursery rhymes! 😀
There’s really nothing very interesting about it, is there?
Fortunately, here at A Wild Imagination, everything is interesting.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to recount history, nor am I going to argue that it is scientifically illogical, although I have partaken in both debates with friends passionately prior to this post. No, today we shall delve into something much more fascinating.
There is no doubt that the rhyme is famous; almost every child who attends Kindergarten must have learnt it at some point or another. We would have sung the rhyme together, and then fallen into peals of laughter. It is almost a reflex reaction to think of an egg
(wearing fashionably distasteful clothes, I might add. No? That’s just me? Oh.) tumbling from the wall when someone mentions ‘Humpty Dumpty.’
Here’s something that will probably hit you like a hurricane and leave your mind in pieces you can’t put together, unless you’ve already figured it out.
Nowhere in the rhyme does it state that Humpty Dumpty is an egg.
Shocking, isn’t it? I didn’t believe it either. It was recently pointed out to me, and I scoffed then and there. I know it’s rude, but I couldn’t help it – of course Humpty must be an egg! For all that king-like grandiosity, I was handed a book of Mother Goose’s Rhymes, opened at Humpty Dumpty’s tale of tragic demise. I scanned through the poem, all the while thinking of proving my friend wrong yet another time, but alas! My indignation had a great fall.
Of course, I was (egg)shell-shocked for the next three hours, held in a state of disbelief.
Everyone probably thought I was having a psychotic break, come to think of it. XD When I finally read through the rhyme a thousand times to satisfy myself, my curiosity emerged.
If there is no mention of Humpty being an egg, why do we all think he is one?
No doubt there was a long story behind it, and since I reached home late at night, I decided to leave it till the next morning. I needed my sleep. Yet my scumbag brain decides that although I’m extremely tired and sleepy, I must have a curiosity level that punches through the roof, and another question pops into my head.
Why did I not see this before?
Now this one was worth answering. Why did I allow the wool to be pulled over my eyes by Humpty in sheep’s clothing? Deep down, I knew I had the answer with me already. It was what I had been taught, and what I had grown up with. People told me that Humpty Dumpty was an egg at an age when I was extremely impressionable (I was also a bit of a cracked egg – still am), and the lesson stuck, till it fell apart that day.
I had taken the fact that Humpty was an egg for granted.
I must have read the rhyme a thousand times, but I never wondered about it. Partly because the answer was given to me beforehand, and partly because there was someone else who had done the thinking previously. Having gotten an answer, I thought to myself, “What if there are so many more things we are missing out on, simply because we’ve taken it for granted? Perhaps, we’ve relegated ourselves to believing the knowledge passed on, so that we won’t have to worry ourselves. Perhaps, we’ve lost our curiosity that helped us think and catch mistakes made.”
That loss of curiosity deprives us of a lot of things. There is a lot left to be discovered, but without curiosity they remain buried, and will soon be forgotten. There is a lot left unnoticed, and without thought, they will remain shadows in the fading light.
So, here’s to Humpty Dumpty and his classic tale that is not all that it’s cracked up to be. So, Humpty Dumpty, are you really a cracked egg? No matter, you’ll always be a good one!
In light of this recent realisation, I leave you with this parody that makes so much more sense:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall,
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men,
Had scrambled eggs for breakfast again.
As always, read, enjoy, and stay happy! Scrambled thoughts? Leave them in the comments section below! I’d love to hear from you! 🙂
Catch you later!