The Turtle that fell off the Stick by Vishnu Sharma

Once upon a time a turtle called Kambugriva lived in a pond. He had two swans, Sankat and Vikat, as good friends. Every day they would meet on the rim of the pond and discuss legends of yore. They would disperse with sunset. That year there were no rains and the water in the pond began slowly disappearing.

Worried, the swans told the turtle, “Friend, What will happen to you? We are concerned.”

“I appreciate your interest in me. There is trouble ahead. Please find a way out of this crisis. But it is important that we should not give in to despair. According to Manu, all good men should come to the rescue of friends and relatives in times of need. Look for a stick or a rope. I will hang on to it as both of you hold the two sides of the stick or rope and ferry me to safety.”

“We shall do as you say,” the swans said. “But you have to shut your mouth. Otherwise, you will crash to the ground.”

On Kambugriva agreeing to the plan, the swans brought a stick and asked the turtle to hold it with his teeth. When everything was ready, the swans flew off with the turtle hanging from it. On the way people saw this sight and exclaimed, “see, how clever the birds are.” In trying to respond to the people, the turtle opened his mouth and fell to the ground and the people at once killed him.

Moral of the story: Never fail to listen to the advice of your friends.

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