Small Bird’s Wisdom

A tale from Poland

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I met this Polish tale in Storytelling With Our Students, (David Heathfield, 2014).
More about the story is on this page of Prof. Ashliman’s website: The Bird’s Three Precepts.

Since posting the tale I have heard more about it from contributors to the ever-helpful Storytell listserv (a wonderful resource). One told me of a version with a slightly different structure from the Avar culture (Caucasus).
Another posted: “The classic story of the Hunter and the Bird (also with wolf or fox) (# Pieces of Advice, etc) is known in so many variants from Israel Folktale Archives to Near East to Middle East to Jataka tales, to the Greek Babrius, Aesop, Odo of Cariton 12th century, Arabian Nights and so on (as shown in Jewish Stories One Generation Tells Another by Peninnah Schram). There are many Jewish versions dating back to at least the Middle Ages, and I have seen it in many places, Jewish and Arabic and more”.

The recording was made in 2016 at the halbNeun Theater, Darmstadt.

More deep tales

The video gallery has become very extensive. So if you would enjoy more tales like this which explore the depths of the human psyche, here are a few suggestions.



The video clips here are all amateur quality, shot in various theatres.

Their intention is just to show the range of my storytelling and give a flavour of a live performance.

Permission is granted for use in non-commercial educational contexts.

The videos are © Richard Martin.

Professionally recorded CDs and DVDs are available here.

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For those who are teachers: Telling stories in the classroom: basing language teaching on storytelling