Parrot and Hen used to be friends, and they lived together in a village.
“I’m getting married,” Parrot told Hen one day. “Will you please let me borrow some of your beautiful feathers?”
In those days, Hen had very fancy feathers, but Parrot did not.
When Parrot returned from his marriage journey, he decided to keep the feathers. “They look better on me!” he said to Hen.
Hen was angry and attacked Parrot, so Parrot flew up into the trees.
That’s why Parrots wear pretty feathers and live in trees now, while Hens are plain and live in the village.
[a Benga story from Gabon]
Inspired by: "Borrowed Clothes" in Where animals talk: west African folk lore tales by Robert H. Nassau, 1912.
Notes: You can read the original story online. This is a Benga story; the parrot is Koho and the chicken is Kuba.