Painting of an owl hunting a grasshopper.

The Owl & the Grasshopper (Aesop’s Fables)

The Owl & the Grasshopper is one of Aesop’s fables, written in the 5th century BCE. There have been many versions told since then. This is one of those retellings, in my own words.

Slashes made by an enraged barbarian fabulist.

A long time ago, in an ancient jungle, there was a wise old Owl. The Owl had a daily routine: she would sleep during the day and hunt during the night. One day, a Grasshopper moved into the tree where the Owl lived.

The Grasshopper had the annoying habit of singing all through the day, disturbing the owl’s precious sleep. The Owl asked the Grasshopper to sing softly, explaining her need for daytime rest, but the Grasshopper paid no heed and continued to sing.

After many sleepless days, the Owl was losing her mind. She could not bear the incessant singing any longer, so she invited the Grasshopper over for dinner, saying, “I have heard that you have a beautiful voice, and I would love to hear you sing under the moonlight.”

The Grasshopper was flattered by the compliment and agreed to put on a performance. However, when he arrived that night, the Owl gobbled him up.

The Moral: Flattery is not proof of admiration. Do not let it throw you off your guard.

Juan Artola Miranda

I am Juan Artola Miranda, a fabulist living in the Mexican Caribbean. My friends know me by the name of my father's father, but that name grew into something bigger, my writing reaching tens of millions of readers. It was too strong for me to control. Artola Miranda is the name of my mother's mother. It's a better name for a fabulist.

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