A mosquito offers to help an old man to discover
the tastiest piece of meat, and free him
from a terrible snake that wants to eat him.
In compensation the old man provides the insect
with iron dentures so that no victim can escape,
but the smart insect will use them to satisfy
its excessive voracity.
In a humoristic key, this traditional Chinese tale,
of an aetiological nature, reveals why the mosquito,
instead of speaking, emits a buzzing sound
as if it were a war cry and lets us know
why snakes eat mice and swallows
are mans friends.
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