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

The Crane, the Crab, and the Fish

A crane that had long coveted the fish in a pond, one day stood on the bank in a melancholy mood.

"Sir Crane," said the fish in a shoal, "why are you sad to-day?"

"My dear fish," said Sir Crane, "I am so sorry that the fisherman is to come to-morrow with his net and take you all away."

"Oh, what shall we do?" cried the fish.

"Why," said the crane, "if you would only listen to my advice, you will all be saved."

"Do help us, by all means, Sir Crane; we will be so thankful to you," said the fish.

"Well, it may be a source of some trouble to me, but that is immaterial; when one can do a kind turn, he ought to do it. I shall take up as many of you as I can at a time, and carry you to a pond at some distance in a forest, where no fisherman can molest you." So saying, he carried each time a number of fish, and dropped them on a great piece of stone. There he made a hearty meal on as many as he could eat at a time, and left the remainder to dry in the sun.

It came to the turn of the crab to be carried. While the crane was flying in the air, the crab saw fish all the way, dried and drying. He cut asunder the neck of the crane with his sharp feet, and, falling into a pond, saved himself and the remaining fish in the pond he had left.

The wicked and the oppressor will find their doom in the end.


The Crane, the Crab, and the Fish

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