From a fable peformed by Jim Wolf in Mahasarakham, Thailand, January 1997.
Retold by Margaret Read MacDonald.
The tree was old
Who knows how long it waited there
content in dark
and proud in day.
Who knows how long.
Until Beast came.
The Beast came snuffling, nose to ground.
It nearly rammed the tree before it looked.
Then suddenly wild Green!
Green sounds of swish and sway.
a small sound of awe.
And now the Beast knew what it loved most.
Then "Crunch!" A fragrant mouthful.
"Smunch!" joyously another.
The Beast munched lovingly around the tree.
Then wandered off to smile and sleep and dream
of green and leaf and tree.
Next day Beast hurried back
to lie against Tree's trunk,
groan sweet, adoring songs.
Then round and "Crunch" and "Smunch!"
and back to dream some more.
Here comes the beast. "Munch! Crunch"
Now back it goes.
Here comes the beast. "Crunch! Smunch!"
There home it goes.
How happy are these days.
'Till one day coming, habit now,
the Beast can't find it's tree.
It snuffles up. Down and around.
Nothing green here.
No rustlings in the air.
Only an ugly stick
that whispers..."I need....I need..."
"I need...I need..."
"oh" A pang of dread.
"I took. I took from tree.
I never gave one thing."
Now Beast is rushing to the waterhole
scooping up mud to carry to the tree.
Packing good dirt around the poor tree's roots.
Then going for clear water from the stream.
Leaves to mulch the roots.
No munching now.
Just saving, graceful acts.
Beast learned this lesson.
We might learn it too.
If you will take.
You also must give back.