Tale from a Pitcher Plant
For those who will listen
The Pitcher Plant tells a cautionary tale.
Some even say those who live
Near the northern bogs
Have been known to repeat
His story from generation to generation.
I live by devious design
To lure unsuspecting insects
By my beautiful purple-veined leaves.
Especially I love some special flies
Who just cant leave me alone!
Theyre not only infatuated by the pleasurable purple
But also by the tasty nectar inside my pitcher-shaped leaves.
Here comes another fool, I say to myself --
Who believes my superficial leaf color and flavor of my nectar
Will fill his needs and satisfy his hunger.
But, as I said, I live by deception,
Because once inside my gaudy pitcher
I have the fly exactly where I want him
Since its so easy to get in but so hard to get out!
I exact a high price for a moment of outward beauty and sweet taste,
For the fly then slides down cruel downward-pointing bristles
Which do not forgive my victims falling path.
The more he struggles against their sharp points
The further entrapped he becomes.
At last the stupid fly lands in my liquid stomach
Which inexorably dissolves him to death.
My human friends would do well to listen to my tale,
For therein is contained a great lesson.
Do not be fooled by gaudy colors and sweet tastes
Which promise such pleasure and delight.
With unsuspecting ease you will enter into their deceptive attractiveness,
And far too late you will realize you are no longer able to get yourself out
But will fall hapless into oblivion.
- 2 -
Did not the Master say: When the devil deceives he speaks his native language?
Do not the Scriptures warn the enemy can pose as an angel of light?
Are we not cautioned he goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour?
Beware the beautiful lies and deceptive sweets which seem so attractive!
Why is it you humans do not take it to heart
What the wisest of men has already told you?
There is a way that seems right unto a man,
But the ends thereof are the ways of death.
Carnivorous plants have always been intriguing. Fortunately, the pitcher plant is only a
few inches tall and is only a threat to insects that come to explore the red meat-looking
interior! The Pitcher Plant grows in boggy areas and has tube-shaped leaves trapping
insects within and also containing fluid with anerobic bacteria which dissolve these
insects. This liquid is then absorbed into the plant as food.
The pitchers (tube-shaped leaves) are green on the outside and red on the inside. Bristle-
like hairs in the interior point downward so that insects entering the pitcher have a very
hard time getting out. These hairs push the insects farther down until they land in the
Another name for the Pitcher Plant is smallpox plant. It has been given credit for
curing Native Americans of smallpox during colonial times.