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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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29. The Wolf Refuses To Pay His Fee

A wolf got a chicken bone stuck in his throat
And looked everywhere for relief,
Then finally sought out a heron physician
And told him the cause of his grief.

         Well, with my long beak I can reach pretty far,
        For a fee I will do what I can!
        Okay,
said the wolf, and he opened his mouth
        And emergency treatment began.

The heron saw teeth that were vicious and long
And a gullet revoltingly iffy,
But putting her head right into his mouth
She plucked out that bone in a jiffy.

         Hooray! said the wolf. Two bucks! said the bird,
         Oh, sorry! that heartless wolf said,
         I won't pay the fee! Your reward is the fact
        That I didn't bite off your head.

MORAL: Never trust the powerful to keep a promise.


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

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