I wrote and read the following "children's story" for our Middle School students. They were a bit shocked by the ending.
The Ungrateful Monkey
Once upon a time there was a little monkey who lived in the jungle. The little monkey was so sad; he had only a few tattered clothes and there was very little to eat. All the other little monkeys could play, but this poor little monkey had a hurt leg. He couldn’t run or climb like all of the other little monkeys. All of the other little monkeys went to school but this little monkey had to stay home to find enough food to keep from getting too hungry.
One day as the little monkey was hunting for food, a giraffe came along. The giraffe said, “Say, little monkey, why are you so sad?” The little monkey cried and told the giraffe that he was so, so hungry.
“Well, said the giraffe, haven’t you noticed that the best fruit is at the top of the trees?”
“I can’t reach the tops of the trees,” said the little monkey, “I’m too short and my leg is hurt so I cannot climb.”
“Here, said the giraffe, “I’ll lift you high so that you can reach the tops of the trees.” So every day the giraffe came along and lifted the little monkey to the tops of the trees so that he wouldn’t be so hungry.
Some time later the little monkey was crying because he couldn’t play with the other children. He tried, but his leg had never healed and it hurt so bad. Along came a parrot and the parrot said, “Say little monkey, why are you so sad?”
The little monkey tearfully replied, “I hurt my leg and I cannot play with the other little monkeys and I can’t reach food without the giraffe.”
“Well, said the Parrot, “Us parrots get hurt all of the time and I know what will heal your leg.” So the parrot joined with all of his parrot friends and they gathered from all of the healing plants of the jungle. They mixed them up and bound them onto his leg.
The parrot said to the little monkey, “You keep this on your leg and it will heal very quickly.”
So in just a few days the little monkey was running and playing with all the other little monkeys. The little monkey no longer needed the giraffe.
Some time later the little monkey was crying because the other little monkeys had made fun of his tattered clothes. A beautiful Peacock came along and said, “Say little monkey, why are you so sad?”
The little monkey cried and told him he only had tattered clothes.
“Well”, said the peacock, “I will clothe you with the best of peacock feathers.”
So the little monkey was transformed. All the other little monkeys admired him for his feathery clothes.
The little monkey proudly strutted about in his beautiful new clothes; he ate everything he wanted and the little monkey could run faster than all the other little monkeys because of his strong legs.
One day the little monkey walked proudly past another little monkey who was crying. The little monkey said to the other little monkey, “Why are you so sad?”
The other little monkey sobbed, “I can’t reach the best fruit at the top of the trees and I’m hungry!”
The little monkey said to the other little monkey,” I have plenty of food to eat and I’m the strongest climber and the fastest runner. If you worked hard like me and if you had stronger and faster legs and if you dressed as beautifully as me then you would have plenty to eat.”
Then the little monkey walked off and left the other little monkey.