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Group Two

11 A wolf becomes

12 A greedy lion

13 A lovesick cat

14 A milkmaid dreams

15 The greedy dog

16 Prideful mice

17 A drowning priest

18 A wise bear

19 A man tries

20 A clever donkey

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17. A Drowning Priest Learns To Pray

One day a schooner filled with men --
Some young, some old, and one a priest--
Sank in a storm, and all aboard
Felt sure they soon would be deceased!

        The young swam well and helped the old
        Who nobly their best effort gave,
        But the poor priest just cried and prayed
        Athena-God his life would save.

        A hundred ducats will I pledge!
        He shouted, I'm your devotee!
        Two hundred! Three! Or even more!
        Just come out here and RESCUE ME!

Just then a sailor swimming near
Cried: Pray your best, that's not a sin!
But also move your bloomin' arms!
And that suggestion saved his skin.

MORAL: God helps those who help themselves


from the book Praying Your Story and the forthcoming book Aesop's Best: 80 Fables in Verse by William Cleary

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