(Recueil 1, Livre 2, Fable 12)
The same instruction we may get
From another couple, smaller yet.
A dove came to a brook to drink,
When, leaning over its crumbling brink,
An ant fell in, and vainly tried,
In this, to her, an ocean tide,
To reach the land; whereat the dove,
With every living thing in love,
Was prompt a spire of grass to throw her,
By which the ant regained the shore.
A barefoot scamp, both mean and sly,
Soon after chanced this dove to spy;
And, being armed with bow and arrow,
The hungry codger doubted not
The bird of Venus, in his pot,
Would make a soup before the morrow.
Just as his deadly bow he drew,
Our ant just bit his heel.
Roused by the villain's squeal,
The dove took timely hint, and flew
Far from the rascal's coop;
And with her flew his soup.
Jean de La Fontaine
Book 2, Fable 12