Before our sons go off in the world, we make them cakes. They can have half a cake with their mother’s blessing, or a whole cake with our curse. It’s up to them.
The size of the cake is determined by the quantity of water our sons can bring back from the well, in a pail that’s full of holes.
It might be a strange way to conduct ourselves, but that’s the way it is.
Widow Among Widows in The Red Etin, Blue Fairy Book. Image by James Sidney Edward Ensor.