In the deepest part of the Mayan jungle, there used to be a marvellous kingdom, whose prince was named Chacdziedzib which means “nightingale.” He was head over heels in love with the daughter of the guardian of the sacred cenote: Nicté-Há, now known as Lotus Flower.
One day, the great cenote, convinced that Chacdziedzib should marry a king’s daughter, opposed his love of Nicté-Há, and brought together all the elders, who decided that the daughter of the guardian of the sacred cenote should die.
The court jester had heard everything, and full of fear, told the prince, who ordered his best warrior to search for his princess and bring her to the Royal Palace, where he would take her for his wife.
The noble warrior set out on his mission, but in the dark of night, the hands of some assassins took his life and threw his body into the bushes.
The court jester again saw it all. When the prince of the red cloak found out what had happened, he took his bow and went to the sacred cenote to look for his beloved. On that moonlit night, he watched over his dream under the ceiba trees.
As soon as the sun came up, Nicté-Há went to look at her reflection in the quiet waters of the sacred cenote. There the prince came near and took her in his arms, showing her that he loved her with all his might.
The scene was interrupted by an arrow which came from the shadows and pierced the young woman’s heart. Her fragile and lifeless body fell, sinking in the waters of the sacred cenote, home of the gods.
The prince was overcome with profound pain. Bathed in tears, he prayed to the gods for pity and compassion. Such was his sadness, that his heart broke into pieces, and he fell in agony on the rim of the cenote in a pool of blood.
The gods heard his cries and sent the Lord of the Waters and the Lord of the Birds. The Lord of the Waters entered the depths of the cenote and changed Nicté-Há’s inert body into a beautiful lotus. Meanwhile, the Lord of the Birds stood over the prince’s heart, and changed him into a beautiful nightingale, forever full of love.
Ever since then, at daybreak, the red bird goes to the water’s edge of the sacred cenote to trill his song of love over the open calyxes of the lotus flowers.
This shows that the plant had a common use among distant cultures. The similarity of the Mayan artwork to the Egyptian has been noted as being very striking.