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

The Peacock, the Goose, and the Turkey

A peacock was near a barn, along with a goose and a turkey. They regarded the peacock with envious eyes, and made fun of his ridiculous pride. The peacock, conscious of his superior merit, despised their base envy, and shook out the beautiful plumage which dazzled them.

"Look at that conceited bird," said the turkey; "with what pride the creature struts along! Was there ever so conceited a bird? If intrinsic worth were regarded, turkeys have a skin whiter and fairer than this ugly peacock. And see what hideous legs and ugly claws the creature has! And what horrible cries he utters, fit to frighten the very owls."

"It is true," rejoined the peacock, "these are my defects; you may despise my legs and my voice, but critics like you rail in vain. Know that if my legs supported a goose or a turkey, no one would have noticed such defects in you."

Beauty and merit cause defects to be noticed; but envious people have eyes only to perceive faults.

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