This story begins when I was a child: I was born poor. Often we hadn't enough to eat. Whenever we had some food, Mother often gave me her portion of rice. While she was transferring her rice into my bowl, she would say "Eat this rice, son! I'm not hungry." That was Mother's First truthful Lie.
As I grew, Mother gave up her spare time to fish in a river near our house; she hoped that from the fish she caught, she could give me a little bit more nutritious food for my growth. Once she had caught just two fish, she would make fish soup. While I was eating the soup, mother would sit beside me and eat what was still left on the bone of the fish I had eaten; my heart was touched when I saw it. Once I gave the other fish to her on my chopstick but she immediately refused it and said, "Eat this fish, son! I don't really like fish." That was Mother's Second truthful Lie.
Then, in order to fund my education, Mother went to a Match Factory to bring home some used matchboxes which she filled with fresh matchsticks. This helped her get some money to cover our needs. One wintry night I awoke to find Mother filling the matchboxes by candlelight. So I said, "Mother, go to sleep; it's late: you can continue working tomorrow morning." Mother smiled and said "Go to sleep, son! I'm not tired." That was Mother's Third truthful Lie.
When I had to sit my Final Examination, Mother accompanied me. After dawn, Mother waited for me for hours in the heat of the sun. When the bell rang, I ran to meet her. Mother embraced me and poured me a glass of tea that she had prepared in a thermos. The tea was not as strong as my Mother's love, Seeing Mother covered with perspiration; I at once gave her my glass and asked her to drink too. Mother said "Drink, son! I'm not thirsty! That was Mother's Fourth truthful Lie.
After Father's death, Mother had to play the role of a single parent. She held on to her former job; she had...