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The Crow and the Snake

on Wed, 07/06/2016 - 14:49

Usha Pandit (2011) Empowering English Grade 3 Mindsprings Publication

 

A huge banyan tree stood tall in the middle of a forest. In this tree there lived a pair of crows with their small family.

One day, a snake came to live in the hole at the bottom of the tree. The crows were worried but they did not say anything.

After a few days, the female crow laid a batch of eggs. When the crows went in search of food, the snake crawled up the tree and stole the eggs. When the crows came back they searched for the eggs but could not find them.

After a few months, the female crow laid some more eggs. This time the female crow stayed in the nest, while the male crow went out to fetch some food. After a while, the snake came out to sun himself. The female crow was keeping a watchful eye on her eggs. The bold snake swiftly moved up the tree, and took her eggs. The crow began to call for help. Hearing the crow shriek, the other crows came to help but the snake had already eaten the eggs and slithered back into its hole. The crows were miserable. If this went on, their eggs would never hatch into babies. They didn’t know what to do about the snake.

The male crow had a friend in the forest. He searched for him and found the big black bear scratching himself against the big oak tree.

The bear said, “Both of you seem to be very sad. What happened?” The crows replied, “We have a big problem. A snake eats up our eggs. We do not know what to do.” The bear was clever. He thought for a few minutes and came up with a good plan.

Listen carefully,” he said, “In the morning, go to the river bank where the queen and the ladies of the royal family bathe. They keep their clothes and jewels in a large open box on the river bank. Go and pick up a necklace from the box and fly away making a loud noise. This will make the guards chase you to the tree. Drop the necklace into the hole of the snake. To get the necklace back, the guards will have to catch the snake.”

The crows did as they were told. The guards ran after the cawing crows and came to the tree. They saw them drop the necklace into the snake hole. The snake was sleeping inside its hole. To get it out, the guards gathered some twigs, and placed them around the snake hole at the bottom of the tree. They set a match to it. The snake came out of the hole and was caught and taken away by a snake catcher.

The necklace was returned to the queen. The crows thanked their friend the bear. Now they lived happily with their young ones on the banyan tree.