The Story of the Enchanted Fish – Can Greed Ever be Satisfied? Talking about the story of the enchanted fish bercerita tentang bisakah keserakahan dipuaskan? Ikan yang terpesona.

There once was a fisherman who lived with his wife in a small hut close by seaside. The fisherman used to go fishing every day. One day, as he sat in his boat wit his rood, looking at the sparkling waves and watching his line, all of a sudden his float was dragged away deep into the water. He quickly started to reel in his line and managed to pull out a huge fish. “Wow! This will feed us for days.” Much to his surprise, this fish started to talk and said, “Pray, let me live I am not a real fish; I am an enchanted prince. Put me in the water again, and let me go! Have mercy o ‘kind fisherman.” The astonished fisherman quickly threw him back, exclaiming, “I don’t want to hurt a talking fish! Go on! Go where you came from.”

When the fisherman went home to his wife, he told her everything that had happened and how, on hearing it speak, he had let it go again. “Didn’t you ask it for anything?” said the wife. “No, I didn’t, what should I have asked for?” replied the fisherman.

“I am surprised you don’t realize what you should have asked for. We live very wretchedly here, in this nasty and dirty hut. We are poor and I am so miserable. You should have asked for a nice cozy cottage. Now go back and ask the fish that we want a snug little cottage”, said his wife.

The fisherman wasn’t sure about this but he still went to the seashore, sat in his boat, we went to the middle of the sea and said:

“O enchanted beautiful fish!

Hear my plea!

My wife wants not what I want,

And she won’t give up till she has her own will,

So come forth and help me!”

The fish immediately came swimming to him, and said, “Well, what is her will? How can I help your wife?” “Ah!’  said the fisherman, “she says that when I had caught you, I ought to have asked you for something before I let ou go. She does not like living in our little hut, and wants a snug little cottage.” “Go home, then,” said the fish, “She is already in the cottage!” So the fisherman went home and saw his wife standing at the door of a nice trim little cottage. “Come in, come on in! look at the beautiful cottage we have. “Husband, there is not enough room for us in this cottage, go back to the fish and tell him to make me an emperor.” “Wife” said the fisherman, “I don’t want to go him again. Perhaps he will be angry. We ought to be happy with what the fish has given us and not be greedy.” “Nonsense!” said the wife, “The fish will do it very willingly, I know. Go along and try!” with a heavy heart the fisherman went to the middle of the sea and said:

“O enchanted beautiful fish!

Hear my plea!

My wife wants not what I want,

And she won’t give up till she hasher own will,

So come forth and help me!”

“What should she have now?” said the fish.  “Ah!” said the fisherman, “she wants to be an emperor.” “Go home,” said the fish; “She is an emperor already.”

So went home and he saw his wife sitting on a very lofty throne made of solid gold, with a great crown on her head full two yards high. And on each of her stood her guards and attendants in a row. The fisherman went up to her and said, “Wife, are you an emperor?” “yes,” said she, “I am an emperor.” “Ah!” said the man, as he gazed upon her , “What a fine thing it is to be an emperor!” “husband”, said she, “it is good to be an emperor.” They were happy for a while.

Then a time came when  she was not able to sleep all might for she was thinking what she should ask next. At last, as she was about to fall asleep, morning broke, and the sun rose. “Ha!” thought she, as she woke up and looked at it through the windows, “after all I cannot prevent the sun from rising.” At this thought she was very angry, and wakened her husband, and said, “Husband, go to the fish and tell him I mut be Lord of the sun and the moon.” The fisherman was half asleep, but the thought frightened him so much that he fell out the bed. “Alas, wife!” said he, “cannot you be happy with being such a powerful emperor?” “No,” said he, “I am very uneasy as long as the sun and the moon rise without my permission. Go to the fish at once!” “I don’t think this is a good idea,”  said the fisherman but his wife wouldn’t listen to him. “Why don’t you just g and ask the fish to make me the Lord of everything?” she said.

Then the man went shivering with fear. As he was going down to the shore a dreadful storm arose. The trees and the very rocks shook and the sky became black with stormy clouds. There were great black waves, swelling up like mountains with crowns of white foam upon their heads. Unfortunately, the fisherman did not have any choice, so he got onto his boat and rowed to the middle of the sea and cried out as loud as he could:

“O enchanted beautiful fish!

Hear my plea!

My wife wants not what I want,

And she won’t give up till she has her own will,

So come forth and help me!”

“What does she want now?” said the fish. “I am truly ashamed of my wife’s greed but I can’t do anything. She wants to be Lord of the sun and the moon. “Go home,” said the fish, “to your small hut.” And it is said that they live there to this very day. (adapted from Grimm Brothers, 1812. “The fisherman and his wife”)

Read the questions carefully. Note down your opinions and reactions to the questions. During the discussion with your teacher and classmates, offer your personal reaction and understanding of the text.

  1. Did the fisherman like asking the fish for wishes? How did he feel about it? Do you think he could have done something else instead of going back to the fish again and again?
  2. The story doesn’t reveal how the prince was turned into a fish. What do you think might have happened?
  3. Do you think the prince will stay a fish forever?
  4. What happened at the end of the story? Please describe
  5. Why did the fisherman’s wife keep asking her husband to go back to the fish?
  6. What do you think of the fisherman’s wife? Do you feel sorry for her? Or do you feel angry with her? Discuss
  7. If you had chance to rewrite the story, how would the story end? Write your ending of the story
  8. Imagine you are the fish in the story. Van you narrate the story from his point of view?
  9. What lesson did you learn from this story?

(Sumber: Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan RI 2017 Bahasa Inggris Kelas XI SMA/SMK/MAK)

Baca juga: Teks Interaksi terkait Cause and Effect