21 The tortoise
22 A thin reed survives
23 The lion and the mouse
24 The goat and the lion
25 The mother lion
26 The donkey's shadow
27 The dove and the ant
28 The greedy boy's hand
29 The greedy woman
30 The tricky donkey
Contact and Quick Purchase
24. The Goat and the Lion Decide Not to Fight
One day in the jungle with nothing to eat
And the sun burning down with a terrible heat,
A goat and a lion both tried to be first
As they rushed toward a fountain, near dying of thirst.
Now the goat was youthful and callow and bold
But the lion was proud and haughty and old.
said the lion,
This fountain is mine!
said the goat,
While I'm feeling benign,
Or else I will butt you into
The lion said:
Goat, you're foolhardy and dumb!
One bite with my teeth and your
young life is through.
Well, just try it, I'll butt you in two!
Just then they heard feathers, and what did they see?
Three vultures were landing nearby in a tree,
Awaiting the battle where someone would lose,
And they'd get the carcass, they didn't care whose.
So Lion and Goat did a compromise trick:
The one who drinks first will just have to drink quick
They agreed, and in minutes they'd both had enough,
And the frustrated vultures flew off in a HUFF.
MORAL: By insisting on your rights you can forfeit more precious things.
from the book Prayers and Fables and the forthcoming book Aesop's Best: 80 Fables in Verse by William Cleary