The swan trapped in a swamp On a day of summer, a baby swan was born by the river. It all seemed pleasant in the beginning, but a few months later, a drought arrived, which killed the insects and small fishes the swan family hunted, dried up the river, and pushed the swans into the deep of the forest. Resting by a damp swamp, the swan parents decided to venture into the neighbouring farmlands to find food for the need of theirs and their baby swan's. So they left their son - who was light enough not to sink - in the swamp, which was sticky enough for the baby bird not to fly off when he would become a grown-up. Days passed, seasons changed, and years went on, but the swan parents never returned. The baby swan grew bigger everyday, with his neck lengthening, the colour of his feathers turning lighter, and his wings forming into full shape. Yet he stayed in the swamp day and night, with his long neck erecting up straight, expecting the return - which was promised - of his parents. Animals stopped by the swamp, talked to the swan, admired his beauty and mourned for his tragedy. Many helped to feed the swan, and some even tried to persuade him to stop waiting and leave the swamp, the offer of which was turned down since the swan feared that, if he left, his parents wouldn’t find him there when they returned. And one day, a boy went into the forest and found the swan. Squatting next to the edge of the swamp, the boy started his first attempt to speak with the swan. ‘Swan, Swan. Why don’t you fly off the swamp and into the sky?’ asked the innocent. ‘I can’t.’ answered the now fully grown bird. ‘I have to wait for my mama and papa.’ ‘But they won’t come back.’ ‘They will. They promised to.’ ‘My father captured two swans a few years ago, when they were entering our farm. And I think they were your parents.’ ‘No way!’ The swan suddenly turned angry, but calmed down after a second and questioned, ‘How can you prove it?’ Having thought for a while, the boy took a quill pen out of his pocket and showed it to the swan, ’You have the same feathers.’ The swan went silent, and his tears began to drop. ‘I am sorry.’ The boy spoke again when the swan was about to overcome his sorrow. ‘But I can help you leave the swamp if you are trapped.’ The swan didn’t answer, but looking at the boy with surprise, as the young visitor leaned over the swamp and offered a tiny hand for him to grab.
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