12 Dec THE DANCING FISH (Andreevich Krylov)
The Lion somehow grew suspicious, from rumours it heard, that the scales had been falsified in its law courts; so, having found a leisure time, it determined to investigate the state of its dominions. Having gone to the shore, it found that the good gossip had caught some fish, and had kindled a fire by the riverside, intending to feast on them with his comrade. The poor fish were bounding into the air to get away from the heat, each one to the best of its power : each one, seeing its end close at hand, flung itself about, gaping at the Moujik.
” Who are you, and what are you doing ? ” angrily asked the Lion.
“‘ Great king ! ” answers the chief rogue the Fox always has a trick in reserve” great king ! this is my chief secretary here, who is esteemed for his probity by all the nation ; and these are carp, all inhabitants of the waters. We have all come here to congratulate you, our good king, on your arrival.”
” Well, how is justice dispensed here ? Is your district content ? ”
” Great king ! here they do not merely live ; they are in Paradise. If only your royal life may be prolonged !”
” But tell me,” said the Lion, ” why do they fling themselves about topsy-turvy in this manner?”
” O wise Lion,” replied the Fox, ” they are dancing for joy at seeing you.”
Then the Lion, tapping the Starost kindly on the breast, proceeded on his journey.
Krilof and His Fables