21. The Donkeys Who Touch Noses

Two men met on a road, each riding a donkey.
The men greeted each other, and the donkeys also touched noses in greeting.
"I understand why people exchange greetings," one man said, "but why do the donkeys put their heads together?"
"Long ago," the other man replied, "the donkeys sent a messenger to God, imploring him to free the donkeys from their servitude. Now when donkeys meet each other, they ask: has our messenger returned yet? They are always hoping for news that God will grant them their freedom."
The donkeys remind us that every creature longs to be free.
[a Tigray story from northern Ethiopia]

Inspired by: "The Tale of the two Donkey-Owners" in Tales, Customs, Names, and Dirges of the Tigre Tribes by Enno Littmann, 1915.
Notes: You can read the original story online. Compare the Aesop's fable about donkeys pissing together.

No comments:

Post a Comment