The Snake and The Firefly


I always loved fables, and I thought I would be familiar with most of them, but today I read this fable which was completely new to me. I checked to see if it belonged to the one of my favorite fable writes, La Fontaine or Aesop but I could not find it anywhere. The funny thing is that the e-mail containing this interesting story had been seating on my inbox unopened for a couple of days now but the subject line was so intriguing that I finally decided to open it. I was astonished at how appropriate this story is to help me answer questions about things and attitudes that I can’t understand. Is like if the person that forwarded this to me, somebody a care deeply for, would know that I would need to read this now. You would ask what this has to do with conservation and photography…well nothing…but it has to do a lot with life and animals and how for centuries we have used animals to try to explain human behavior…isn’t that fascinating?

I could not find a picture of snake or a firefly on my photo archive, but I did find this beautiful Damselfly

And this is the story:

There was once a firefly who liked to fly among the trees in a jungle. One day, a snake came along and looked at the firefly flying around, working, eating, and shining with its great green light. The snake didn’t have much to do, though, so he decided to chase the firefly around to eat him… First just keeping a watchful eye, then slithering softly along and lastly chasing rapidly around. The firefly flew as fast as those little wings could take him, but eventually grew tired and fell to the ground, where the snake was awaiting. Before the snake could eat him, he pleaded to ask a few questions, to which the snake replied: “Hmm… I don’t usually give this privilege to my food, but go ahead”. The firefly then asked “Am I in your food chain?”, and the snake answered “No…”. “Are you hungry?” mumbled the defenseless little firefly. “Not really, no” said the vicious snake. “Then why do you want to eat me?” cried the firefly, to which the snake stated clearly “Because I just can’t stand to see you shine!”


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