A Countryman and a Snake

A countryman’s son stepped on a snake’s tail accidentally. The tail suddenly turned and hit him so that he died. The father was very angry so that he cut off part of the snake’s tail. Then, the snake in revenge stung several of the farmer’s cattle. It caused him great loss. However, the farmer decided to stop the fight with the snake. He brought food and honey to the mouth of its lair, and said to it, “Let’s forget and forgive. Perhaps you were right to punish my son, and take revenge on my cattle, but surely I was right in trying to revenge him. Now that we are both satisfied, why should not we be friends again?” “No, no,” said the snake. “Take away your gifts. You can never forget the death of your son, nor I the loss of my tail. Injuries may be forgiven, but not forgotten.”