The Monkey and the Crocodile
Monkey loved to play and swing in the forest canopy. It was not only his home, but it was his stage as well. He could move quickly through and around it like the cheetah that raced on the savannah. But Monkey showed his speed and agility not on the land like swift Cheetah, but rather, high above it. It is in leafy trees that Monkey lived, ate, and played. He traveled by running along the branches and gracefully leaping from tree to tree. Monkey provided entertainment for the animals who watched his show from beneath. They marveled at how he used his long tail as a rudder to steer in mid-air. They were in awe of Monkey’s ability to land safely and smoothly by grasping the tree branches with his fingers and toes. These land-loving animals often laughed at Monkey’s antics in his towering playground. They were grateful, too, for the bits of fruit and nectar-filled flowers that Monkey dropped. For all his grace in the trees, Monkey was a messy eater. Often half-eaten scraps would provide tasty refreshment for the crowd below. One fine day, the animal audience knew it was in for quite a show. At the river, Monkey’s friend, Crocodile, awakened with a nasty gleam in his eyes. “I am tired of always crawling along on the land, sliding my belly, dragging my tail, pushing my short legs so I can visit Monkey who does nothing but swing and twitter high in the trees. It is time we met at my home - the river.” Crocodile opened his enormous snout and swiped sideways at the air. He snapped his
©Maggie's Earth Adventures, LLC 2001
jaws several times until the frightened frogs hopped off to tell Monkey. When the amphibians arrived with Crocodile’s command, Monkey merely laughed. “My friend Crocodile knows I do not swim. Besides, Crocodile enjoys the trek from that water-filled home of his. He does nothing but bask in the sun all day anyway. Tell him I will not go near his river. He must visit me here.” With that, the fretting frogs returned to...
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