The Owl And The Birds
An Owl, in her wisdom, counseled the Birds that when the acorn first
began to sprout, to pull it all up out of the ground and not allow
it to grow. She said acorns would produce mistletoe, from which an
irremediable poison, the bird- lime, would be extracted and by which
they would be captured. The Owl next advised them to pluck up the
seed of the flax, which men had sown, as it was a plant which boded
no good to them. And, lastly, the Owl, seeing an archer approach,
predicted that this man, being on foot, would contrive darts armed
with feathers which would fly faster than the wings of the Birds themselves.
The Birds gave no credence to these warning words, but considered
the Owl to be beside herself and said that she was mad. But afterwards,
finding her words were true, they wondered at her knowledge and deemed
her to be the wisest of birds. Hence it is that when she appears they
look to her as knowing all things, while she no longer gives them
advice, but in solitude laments their past folly.