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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

The Husbandman and the Stork

By Babrius (c. Second Century A.D.)

Translation of James Davies

THIN nets a farmer o’er his furrows spread,

And caught the cranes that on his tillage fed;

And him a limping stork began to pray,

Who fell with them into the farmer’s way:—

“I am no crane: I don’t consume the grain:

That I’m a stork is from my color plain;

A stork, than which no better bird doth live;

I to my father aid and succor give.”

The man replied:—“Good stork, I cannot tell

Your way of life: but this I know full well,

I caught you with the spoilers of my seed;

With them, with whom I found you, you must bleed.”

WALK with the bad, and hate will be as strong

’Gainst you as them, e’en though you no man wrong.