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Group Three

21 The boastful rooster

22 Grasshoppers fail

23 A hunter hunts

24 A swan sings

25 An eagle dies

26 The foolish crab

27 A reckless deer

28 The foolhardy shepherd

29 A wolf refuses

30 A wily fox

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21. The Boastful Rooster Loses His Life

Once there was a handsome rooster
        Big of muscle, tall and strong,
Proud he was to frighten every
        Other cock that came along.

One fine day a junior rooster
        Cock-a-doodled in the yard!
Flash! The senior's claws attacked
        And ran off junior, bruised & scarred.

How he strutted then with victory
        While the hens all clapped & laughed!
Up he flew atop the hen house,
        Bellowing like he was daft.

But just then a passing eagle
        Heard the noise and swooped right down
And carried off that bragging rooster
        As a lunch for eagle town.

Down below, the Junior Rooster
        Staggered forth and took a bow
While all the hens and chicks were clucking
        How "their HERO!" he was now.

MORAL: Only fools praise 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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