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A fable is a traditional story that teaches us a moral lesson. Usually the characters in the fables are animals. This poem ‘The Ant and the Cricket’ teaches us the importance of hard work and planning.
A silly young cricket, accustomed to sing
Through the warm, sunny months of gay summer and spring,
Began to complain when he found that, at home,
His cupboard was empty, and winter was come.
Not a crumb to be found
On the snow-covered ground;
Not a flower could he see,
Not a leaf on a tree.
“Oh! what will become,” says cricket, “of me?”
At last by starvation and famine made bold,
All dripping with wet, and all trembling with cold,
Away he set off to a miserly ant,
To see if, to keep him alive, he would grant
Him shelter from rain.
And a mouthful of grain.
He wished only to borrow;
He’d repay it tomorrow;
If not, he must die of starvation and sorrow.
Says the ant to the
cricket, “I’m your servant
and friend,
But we ants never
borrow; we ants never
But tell me, dear cricket,
Did you lay anything by
When the weather was
warm?” Quoth the cricket,
“Not I!”
My heart was so light
That I sang day and night,
For all nature looked gay.”
“For all nature looked gay”.
“ You sang, Sir, you say?
Go then”, says the ant, “and dance the winter away”.
Thus ending, he hastily lifted the wicket,
And out of the door turned the poor little cricket.
Folks call this a fable. I‘ll warrant it true:
Some crickets have four legs, and some have two.
~ Adapted from Aesop's Fables
State Council of Educational Research and Training 2019. Term 1 English Standard - 10. The Ant and the Cricket - Aesop's Fables (pp. 115 -119). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.