Gateway to the Classics: Indian Fables by Ramaswami Raju
Indian Fables by  Ramaswami Raju

The Beasts and the Fishes

The beasts and the fishes once came to an agreement that they should exchange places for some time by way of variety. So the fish ranged over the plains, and the hawks, the kites, the vultures, and other animals soon made dreadful havoc with them.

Most of the beasts that got into the sea, not being able to breathe, soon died by myriads, or were devoured by the sea monsters. So the others with difficulty came to the shore and met the remaining fishes, who had just arrived from the interior of the country.


The Beasts and the Fishes

Said the fishes, "Oh, let us go back to our home, the sea!" and darted into the water.

Said the beasts, "Oh, let us go back to our home, the land!" and jumped ashore.

A sage, who had been witnessing the scene, said, "When will you change places again?"

"Never more! never more!" said both.

Said the sage, "Each doth best in his own element!"

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