Hush precious child, be very still
Stay very quiet and if you will
I’ll tell you a beautiful fantasy
But you must listen very carefully
There’s much more to this story than first meets the eye,
The tale of the Lion and the Firefly:
In a dark dingy cave, cowered a lowly lion
All alone with no-one to rely on
This once mighty King
Now a pitiful thing
He cried the lonely nights away
He wanted to make this his very last day.
Then into the cave came a brilliant light
That shined through the darkness, incredibly bright
The light was a beautiful Firefly
Who asked the poor lion “Please tell me why
You cower alone in this dark dingy cave
When once you were proud and incredibly brave?”
He said “I’m now just a shade of my once mighty self,
I’ve grown old and weak and I’ve lost my good health,
I can no longer cope with my trouble and strife
I no longer value my miserable life
Please leave me alone, my dear firefly,
Please leave me here in this dark cave, to die.”
She said “It breaks my heart to see such distress
Please come with me to the Pool of Happiness
Where the Angels gaily dance and play
When you swim in the water, you’ll be happy all day
You’ll be blissfully happy, eternally
Now what do you say Lion? Will you come with me?”
The Lion wearily opened an eye
And turned to face the Firefly
The very moment that he saw the light
He was released from the chains that had held him so tight
That had weighed down his body, his heart and his brain,
He felt like a cub, as though he’d been born again!
Refreshed with new spirit, he said that he would
Follow the firefly through the Dark Gloomy Wood
Along a straight and narrow path
They progressed for over a month and a half
When all at once they were given a start
By the appearance of a beautiful pure white Hart.
The Hart he took flight
At the speed of white light
The Firefly followed
And reassuringly hollered
“Do not have fear!
You are safe while I’m near!”
“That Lion is as gentle as a lamb,
You would not fear him, if you knew who I am!
I’ll keep you safe from this magnificent beast
Fear not, upon you, he’ll never feast
My tender Hart, I’ll take good care of you
Don’t be afraid, it’s the least I can do!
And in return, my dear Hart, you can help me”
“Oh!” said the Hart “but what good will I be?”
“You’ll be my ears,
Your sharp senses can hear
Danger coming from far, far away
We might be in need of your help one day!”
So The Lion and The Firefly were joined by the Hart
And once again they made a fresh start
On their long and arduous Quest
To find the Pool of Happiness
Until a thousand miles on the Hart did declare
“I think that I can hear a Bear!”
So The Firefly went over and yes, true enough
A Big Black Bear! Fierce, mean and gruff!
When he tried to swot the Firefly
She exclaimed with a delicate little sigh
“That was not a nice thing to do
Especially since I have come to save you!
There’s a ferocious Lion coming your way
And without my protection, you’re easy prey!
I’ll make you an offer you should not refuse,
If you disagree, then it’s you who will lose!
I’ll tell The Lion that he shouldn’t eat you
And if you agree, he’ll come over to meet you.”
So The Big Black Bear met with The Lion
And The Firefly said “you can always rely on
Us to protect you
We won’t neglect you
And you can join us in our noble Quest
To find the Pool of Happiness!”
So The Firefly, The Lion, The Hart and The Bear
Took the trail that would lead them to… Goodness knows where?
When the Hart saw an Eagle way up in the sky
Who swooped down to capture Firefly
But he couldn’t catch her, oh no, that is right
Because The Bear struck The Eagle down in mid-flight!
“Please do not kill me” The Eagle did cry,
“I wasn’t going to hurt The Firefly!
I’ve been watching you four and I wanted to know
Where it is you are trying to go?
I know every inch of this land,
And I just wondered if I could lend you a hand.
The Bear was very tempted to know
If the Eagle could show him the right way to go,
And so he asked the Eagle “can help us to find,
In these dense woods where we’re no better than blind,
The mystical Pool of Happiness?
Can you lead us in our Quest?”
The Eagle exultantly did declare
“Yes, my dear friend! I do know where
To find this Pool of which you speak,
Don’t worry, you no longer need to seek
For one single second more!
I’ve been there many times before.
Follow me and I will show
You four pilgrims where to go!”
The Eagle answered The Bear’s request
By leading them to the Pool of Happiness
Where four Nymphs gaily played in the waters
So beautiful they could’ve been Athena’s Daughters!
They beckoned all our Heroes near
And declared “What handsome fellows are here!”
The Eagle, Bear and Hart dived straight in
And over to the Nymphs those three did swim
Each one was swimming as fast as they can
And as they were swimming they changed into a Man
But The Lion remained stead-fast on the bank
And he shook his head and he said “no thank-you
You are not my type!”
And the Fourth Water Nymph sadly did wipe
Away a sorrowful tear
As she dived into the Pool and she disappeared.
The three men exclaimed “You could be happy!
Come on now Lion, what could it be,
After we’ve travelled so far to get here
You let your chance of joy disappear!
What’s stopping you diving into the Pool?”
Dear Lion, are you a complete, utter Fool?
Those 3 new-born men were conceived by the seed
Of Lust, Envy and Pride, Wrath, Sloth, Jealousy, and Greed,
They indulged in every human desire
Until the end of the day, when they were consumed by a fire!
They had abandoned the safety of Firefly
And without her protection, were condemned to die!
The Lion knew the right thing to do,
His love for the firefly was faithful and true
He told her “Nymphs could not bring me happiness
If I ever thought of you in distress
I could not let that happen to you
I only want you to be happy too!
“But I am happy!” said The Firefly
As she wiped a tear away from her eye
“Then if you’re happy, my love, then I’m happy too
And I will always be just as happy as you”
And the Lion grew wings and they flew into the sky
For now he too was a firefly!
The Eagle had claimed that his way was right
But the Firefly was the Way and the Truth and the Light
When the Lion stayed true to the Firefly
He received the Light that will never die
And they ascended to the Heavens above
Flying on the wings of love!
Read more articles by Daniel de Cruz or search for articles on the same topic or others.