The Garden of Paradise
What a crackling there was of dry twigs, what smoke, and what a smell of smoldering! Finally it all burst into flames, and the old phoenix was reduced to ashes, but her egg lay white-hot in the blaze. With a great bang it broke open, and the young phoenix flew out of it. Now he is the ruler over all the birds, and he is the only phoenix bird in all the world. As his greetings to the Princess, he thrust a hole in the palm leaf I am giving you."
"Let's have a bite to eat," said the mother of the winds.
As they sat down to eat the roast stag, the Prince took a place beside the East Wind, and they soon became fast friends.
"Tell me," said the Prince, "who is this Princess you've been talking so much about, and just where is the Garden of Eden?"
"Ah, ha!" said the East Wind. "Would you like to go there? Then fly with me tomorrow. I must warn you, though, no man has been there since Adam and Eve. You have read about them in the Bible?"
"Surely," the Prince said.
"After they were driven out, the Garden of Paradise sank deep into the earth, but it kept its warm sunlight, its refreshing air, and all of its glories. The queen of the fairies lives there on the Island of the Blessed, where death never comes and where there is everlasting happiness. Sit on my back tomorrow and I shall take you with me. I think it can be managed. But now let's stop talking, for I want to sleep."
And then they all went to sleep. When the Prince awoke the next morning, it came as no small surprise to find himself high over the clouds. He was seated on the back of the East Wind, who carefully held him safe. They were so far up in the sky that all the woods, fields, rivers, and lakes looked as if they were printed on a map spread beneath them.
"Good morning," said the East Wind. "You might just as well sleep a little longer. There's nothing very interesting in this flat land beneath us, unless you care to count churches. They stand out like chalk marks upon the green board."
What he called "the green board" was all the fields and pastures.