The Travelers and the Bear – AESOP’S FABLES (never trust a friend who leaves you when trouble approaches / misfortune is the test of true friendship)

Walking unarmed across a wooded waste,

Two travelers heard a bear.

One scrambled up a tree with frenzied haste;

The other could but stare,

Too old and plump to climb; then, with no sound,

Lay flat against a boulder, face to ground.


The bear came shuffling up, with small dark eyes,

Enormous, black and dread.

He sniffed the man; but, since he did not rise,

Decided he was dead,

And shambled off, because his kind would ear

No chance-found flesh, but only new-killed meat.


Out of the tree the climber, losing fear,


Now hurried to descend.

“Well, what did Bruin whisper in your ear?”

He mockingly asked his friend…

“This only: never trust the word or dee

Of one who, tested, leaves you in your need.”



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