My father was a rich businessman. In our company, we manufactured two products — miniature trees and globes. Trees are little brown plastic cylinders with flat green matter on top. We had different models of trees. People bought them to decorate their houses and schools ordered trees in bulk to use as teaching aids. You see, Earth was the name of the planet our ancestors used to live in before we shifted to this planet — Plastikos two. We learnt about Earth in detail in history class.

We had something called ‘photosynthesis’ in our curriculum and it had something to do with trees. I didn’t believe them. I saw trees in my factory every day and had never seen them do anything like photosynthesis.

My father had a few expensive fancies. The latest fad was greenhouses. I didn’t know what a greenhouse was. All I knew was that it had trees. But, so did our factory! What’s the big deal, I thought. But that was before my dad took me there. The greenhouse was an enormous glass cage and inside it grew real, live, huge trees. Not factory trees. These trees were the real deal — winding, green umbrellas. It was so soothing!

In a short time, my dad lost his interest in the greenhouse. He then planned to produce globes with wood instead of plastic. He sent some men with axes to the greenhouse to cut down the wood. I couldn’t take it anymore and I used my weapon. I screamed at the top of my voice until those guys threw their axes away.

This is how the Earth was reborn — from my scream. I grew up to follow in my dad’s footsteps, making trees and miniatures globes within glass cages. I give students the real photosynthesising trees. I hope they will grow out of their glass cages one day.

TEZA M. GEORGE, Mar Baselios Public School, Kottayam