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Parable Of The Tick And The Dog

Once upon a time, a tick and a dog sat together on a green field.
Quickly, the tick buried itself inside the skin of the dog and began to suck the blood of the dog.
The dog, feeling dizzy from the loss of blood, wanted to remove the tick from its skin, but the tick invited the other ticks on the field to join in the blood-sucking feast.
The dog begged and pleaded with the ticks to leave, but they refused, saying they have a right to suck the blood of the dog.
The ticks not only declined to separate themselves from the body of the dog but began to call the dog a separatist and an agitator.
The ticks dug deeper and deeper into the arteries and veins and capillaries of the dog.
There is a Yoruba saying: ìpà ń pa ara rẹ̀, ó ní òun ń pa aja.
It means “The tick is committing suicide but thinks it is merely killing the dog.”
When the ticks suck dry the dog’s blood, the dog will fall and die. But the ticks will be buried with the body of the dog.
Let those who have ears listen and learn from the parable of the tick and the dog.
Let the wise break this parable, like the Igbo people break kola nut for their ceremonies.

The picture shows me yesterday on my way to give a talk at a museum in San Antonio.

Prof. Moyo Okediji

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