Monkey’s Fiddle and Bow
Monkey’s New Beginning
Long, long ago somewhere in Africa… When the earth and all the people and animals were new… Monkey, although a good hunter and careful keeper of his domain had ran out of food to eat, as a result of a very harsh drought in his country. The need for food, lead Monkey to seek out his cousin in another part of the world, not overly far from where he lived.
Hungry and forlorn, the long journey completely exhausted Monkey, finally arriving at Baboon’s shelter. Baboon put Monkey to work to gather food for them both, which he shared fairly with Monkey, because Monkey was family.
After some time the drought had lifted in Monkey’s country. So he took his leave of Baboon, thanking him kindly for his help and extending an invitation to him should he need, he was welcome in Monkey’s home. Baboon was so impressed with the way Monkey worked and went about his life, that he gave Monkey two gifts to help him in any future drought or strange trouble that may one day befall him.
The two gifts Baboon gave Monkey were a bow – with arrows – and a fiddle. Baboon instructed him carefully, that with the bow and arrows he could shoot and hunt what he liked, while the fiddle could make anything dance if played with love. Having said their goodbyes Monkey was on the road again, but this time well taken care off, thanks to his cousin Baboon.
On his return home to his country, who should he meet, but Hyena. Now he was not too fond of Hyena and marked him with caution. Being an older Hyena and more stable in his ways, Monkey decided he was most likely to be straight forward. The old sage of a Hyena brought Monkey up to date with the latest news in the district and mumbled a complaint about a certain Impala he had been stalking all day since early morning without success.
Monkey proud of his new acquisitions, began to show off to Hyena what could be done with these implements in the hands of someone with deft and style. So saying, he asked Hyena to show him this Impala and he would surely bring it to Hyena as a meal.
No sooner had Hyena showed Monkey the Impala when it went down. Shocked, Hyena wanted to know if it was dead and Monkey assured him it was. Hyena advocated that seeing was believing and they both approached the Impala lying there. Sure enough, it was dead.
Jackal to the Rescue or Not
Not long after they had made a great meal out of the Impala, Monkey observed that something strange had come over Hyena, because he sat there staring at Monkey’s bow and arrows. With suspicion Monkey viewed Hyena until suddenly Hyena with complete jealousy, not even a thank you for the meal, begged Monkey to give him the bow and arrows. In fact he demanded them from Monkey, when the latter refused to give them away and becoming very aggressive toward Monkey who was beginning to get very worried about his own safety, seeing Hyena was much stronger than he was.
At that very moment Jackal happened to pass by to Monkey’s great relief, right then hoping Jackal to be an ally. Suddenly out of the blue, Hyena told Jackal that Monkey had stolen his bow and arrows.
Monkey was distraught that Hyena would tell such a story and told Jackal his side of the story. Jackal after hearing Monkey, informed them both he was unqualified to make a decision and this matter called for the Council of Lion, Leopard, Elephant and the other animals to decide the outcome in the great court.
Jackal however, declared he would have to take and secure the objects in question until the day of the council. This done, Jackal immediately ran off and hunted near and far, leaving a path of destruction in his wake everywhere he went in search of a tasty meal.
Today the Animal Council Sits
Finally the day of the Council arrived with Monkey being asked to tell his story first. To weaken Monkey’s case, Jackal decided to go against him and pretended to support Hyena hoping to get the bow and arrows for himself. After Jackal, Hyena gave his version of things and poor Monkey’s evidence was not looking good.
After much deliberation, the Council gave the verdict of death to Monkey by hanging from his neck. Theft, you see, was a terrible offence among the animal kingdom and death was the only verdict.
Out of desperation for a way out, Monkey remembered his fiddle, still hanging from his side. As a favour from the court, Monkey was given the right to play a tune on his fiddle as a last request.
The charm of the fiddle and mastery by which Monkey played, brought out all the powers in this wonderful instrument in the hands of Monkey. Because of this wonder of Monkey and the fiddle, the entire council of the court swished around Monkey like a whirlwind in a trance, waltzing round and round. First a slow waltz with an ever increasing speed Monkey fiddled, oblivious of the other animals falling all over the show with their legs gyrating in the air. Everywhere and all around the air was filled with music and still Monkey played on, himself overtaken by the wonderful sounds that came from his magical fiddle.
Hyena was the first to cry out in breathless pleading tones for Monkey to stop, because his heart was breaking with remorse, while his old legs where shaking him to pieces, as he lay there gyrating on his back.
Monkey of course heard nothing but the fiddle and the stomping of his own feet. And so Monkey played on and on.
Then Lion, tripping over his wife’s feet one time too many, growled out to Monkey in a loud roar as he went past with Mrs Lion hanging onto his mane for dear life. Lion was offering Monkey his whole kingdom if he would only stop playing his now menacing fiddle. Monkey shouted back at Lion who was almost crawling on the floor, that he did not want his kingdom. He only wanted the case withdrawn from him, his bow and arrows back and an apology from Hyena and Jackal for stealing it from him.
Hyena and Jackal cried out as one voice asking forgiveness and Lion withdrew the sentence in a very loud roar that could be heard across his whole kingdom.
The entire kingdom of the animals ran to all parts of the world to get away from Monkey and his fiddle, in case he may begin again. Since then all kinds of animals have been found all around the world to this day.