The Flea and the Ox (fable)

A FLEA thus questioned an Ox:

“What ails you, that being so huge and strong, you submit to the wrongs you receive from men and slave for them day by day, while I, being so small a creature, mercilessly feed on their flesh and drink their blood without stint?”

The Ox replied:

“I do not wish to be ungrateful, for I am loved and well cared for by men, and they often pat my head and shoulders.”

“Woe’s me!” said the flea; “this very patting which you like, whenever it happens to me, brings with it my inevitable destruction.”



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