An Unfortunate Shot

: Stories Gone Astray
: Laos Folk-lore Of Farther India

There was once a poor man too ill to work, and he had no one to give him

food. The chow of the province heard of him and sent for him to come to

his house.

When the man reached the house of the chow, the chow gave him a bow and

arrow, saying, "Shoot upward toward the sky. When the arrow falls to the

earth, if it fall making a hole in the earth, I will weigh the earth

which the arrow digs up, and give thee the weight of it in gold. On

whatsoever thy arrow falls, that will I weigh and give its weight unto

thee in gold. If, in its fall, the arrow should make a hole in the

ground six feet long and six feet deep, that earth will I weigh, and

gold according to the weight thereof shall be thine."

The poor man was indeed glad, and, shooting with all his strength into

the air, the arrow pierced a pomegranate seed, therefore the chow gave

unto him gold but the weight of the seed!