Sunday, January 30, 2005

The Foolish Wolf

A hungry wolf comes upon a horse mired in the mud. The wolf prepares for a feast, but the horse asks him whether he shouldn't pull his meal out of the mud first. So the wolf performs this chore and prepares, once again, to eat.

But shouldn't the wolf first clean his food? the horse argues. The wolf acknowledges that this might be a good idea and licks the mud off the horse. The wolf is finally ready to dig in when the horse says, "Hey, there's some writing on the hoof of my hind leg. Before you eat me, read that, please." The curious wolf walks around the horse, who lifts one of his hind legs and easily bashes in the wolf's skull with a single kick.

The wolf, alone and dying in the mud, howls to himself "I was a fool.... Am I the owner that I should have pulled the horse from the mud? Am I the mother who should have licked and cleaned the horse's body? When did I learn to read and write? I was stupid and now I am dying."
- Mongolian folktale.


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