The Two Gazelles

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Once upon a time there were two gazelles in the African plains. They were tall and fast and nimble. They had been through a lot together, dodging lions and other attacks. They had survived through droughts and storms, and seen generations rise and fall beneath them. One day, as the two gazelles grazed along the plain, the oldest and tallest of the gazelles, named James, said to the other, “I’m hot… I think we should go over to that tree,” and pointed with his nose to a tree on the horizon. “I am very hot, and we could use some shade.”

The other gazelle, named Ed, looked over to the horizon, but could not see anything. The plain was blazing hot, and the heat rose from the sand in waves to distort the image of the tree, but Ed could faintly see the outline of a tree in the distance. Even though Ed had been along the same plain hundreds of times, he could not remember seeing that tree.

“Yeah… but have you even seen that tree over there? We’ve been over this plateau a bunch of times, and it has never been there,” Ed said to James.

“No, I remember resting under that tree months ago, when we grazed with those three zebras,” James replied.

The two gazelles went back to their eating, and for a few minutes, all was quiet. They heard thunder over by the horizon, near the tree, and looked up, smiling.

“Come on, Ed. Let’s have a leisurely day and head over to the tree. We can rest, and when we wake up, it will be raining,” James said.

Ed looked back to the tree, and there it was, dark, green, and luscious, standing in the distance. Ed dashed off, and James heard him yell back, “I’ll race you there!” James took off after Ed, and soon, the gazelles were running neck and neck, coming closer to the plain. They saw the tree, a dark green patch just above the horizon. Transfixed, they galloped along, imagining the deep sleep they were soon to take. Ed looked over to James with a big smile, who smiled back at him, as the two gazelles tumbled off of the plateau. The two gazelles fell, horrifyingly realizing that they had mistaken the oncoming storm clouds for a tree. Ed and James fell to their death, wishing that they had trusted their senses.

-Always trust your senses.





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