A rich Spaniard, riding about one day,
Was paying no attention to his way,
He circled for home, but then before,
he saw a young boy, on the river’s shore.
the lad scowled at his empty hook,
the Spaniard alit with a kindly look,
they sat together, he and the forlorn child
looked the boy in the eye and then he smiled.
“You are the most melancholy niño I’ve ever seen,”
the Spaniard said. “What does your sad face mean?”
‘Nuestro padre gone; for siete children I –
must fish all day” the pescar lad lent reply.
“Mi madre es ill and we are poor;
It is for fish I frequent this shore –
I fish here from the morning’s light,
until I fear the dark and dreary night.
I catch very few fish and my fingers pain,
I must fish in all weather, hot sun or rain.”
The Spaniard said: “Can I fish, will you agree?”
The lad nodded and, then almost immediately,
From his saddle bag the man did deliver,
hook and line, casting it far, into the river.
Together they caught ciento cincuenta fish.
“This wealth is far beyond my wildest wish,”
the boy said. ‘A splendid haul,’ the Man replied.
Good Fortune has been busy at your side –
Accept your luck, don’t try to comprehend
How this has happened; you’d be lost, my friend.
Your wealth is greater than my own; today
A King has fished for you — I cannot stay.’
He leapt onto his horse. ‘But take your share,’
The boy said earnestly. ‘That’s only fair.’
‘Tomorrow’s catch is mine. We won’t divide
Today’s; you have it all,’ the King replied.
‘Tomorrow when I fish you are the prey,
A fine trophy I refuse to give away.’
The next day, walking in his pastoral shade,
The King recalled the friend that he had made.
A apostle fetched the boy, and this unknown
was, at the king’s command set on his throne.
The apostles murmured at his poverty –
“He is my friend, this fact suffices me;
He is my equal here in everything
The partner of my throne,” declared the King;
To every taunt the boy had one reply:
‘My sadness vanished when My King passed by.’