Adapted by Bertie.
Read by Richard.
Produced by Jana Elizabeth.
Song sung by Jana Elizabeth
This is Richard, and I’m here with a fable by Aesop which is ever so short. As it’s such a teeny weeny squib of a tale, there’s time to tell it to you in three forms: a story, a poem, and a song.
First the story
It was hot. It was so terribly hot that the trees were sweating. The ponds were empty. The wells were dry. The ducks were thirsty. Now there were two frogs who were so parched that the younger one said:
“Any more of this heat and we’re going to shrivel up so small that we’ll be tadpoles again.”
The old frog croaked back, “If we don’t find a well with some water in it, we’re going to die!”
And so they both decided that their only chance was to search far and wide until they found a better place to live. And so off they hopped over the fields and far away. At last, just as their legs had the final bit of energy left in them, they found a well.
“This better have a few drops left or that’s it for us,” said the older frog. They both peeped over the edge and low and behold – lovely water that was deep, deep deep. In they both tumbled, head over heals, and drank their fill.
The young frog exclaimed, “Oh my, this is the life, let’s stay here in this well forever!”
But the older one shook his head and said, “No dear boy, it is wiser to climb out of this well right away. For if the hot weather continues, the water here will sink down, and we shall go lower down too, and what do you think will happen?”
“Er, it will all dry up?” suggested the young frog.
“Yes, and then what shall we do? For we shall be right at the bottom of a very deep dry well, and it will be impossible for us to jump out.”
And so the moral of this story is –
‘Look before you leap.’
And that was the story of The Two Frogs and the Well, by Aesop. Now in the 19th Century, an English poet called Jeffreys Taylor turned the fable into verse. I thought you might like to hear his poem.
The Two Frogs, by Jeffreys Taylor
THE day was hot,—the heat was dire,
Enough to make a post perspire;
The ponds were empty, pumps were dry,
The ducks were thirsty, so was I.
Two frogs resolved (quite right I think)
To take a tour in search of drink;
And long they sped them on their way,
And many a dangerous leap had they;
But there appear’d a well at length,
Which both approach’d with failing strength;
But when they gave an anxious peep,
Alas! ’twas twenty fathoms deep!
“Well,” said the youngest, “let’s descend;”
“No,” said the other, “youthful friend;
For should the water dry here too,
I ask thee what we then should do?”
Deep was the well, not quite so deep
Our moral lies,—”look ere you leap.
And that was The Two Frogs by Jeffreys Taylor.
And now, as you may know, Although Aesop was Greek, many of his fables originated in India. We thought you might like to hear a little Indian song about a frog jumping into a well. It’s sung, in Hindi, by Storynory’s Jana Elizabeth.
Song – Baba Dudua
And that was the traditional Indian song called Baba Dudua.
Sung by Jana Elizabeth.
Guitar by Andrew Kinnear.
I hope you have enjoyed our variations on the ancient tale of the two frogs. For now, from me, Richard Scott at Storynory.com