Fables of Jean De La Fontaine : The Miser Who Lost His Treasure

Only usage warrants possession
I ask this of people who have this passion
Of always hoarding money on top of money.
What advantage has he over another man?
Diogène yonder is as rich as they,
And the miser over there lives as *he did, a beggar.
The man with the hidden treasure which Aesop gives us
Will in fact be an example.
This miserly man was waiting
To enjoy his wealth in another life; (or in future time)
Didn’t possess gold, but gold possessed him.
He had buried a sum in the earth,
Along with his heart, having nothing else in mind
Except to think about it day and night,
And to turn his loot into something sacred.
Whether he went or came, drank or ate
One would have underestimated him, lest he thought
Of the place where his coins were buried.
He roamed around it so often, that a grave digger noticed,
guessed the deposit, took it saying nought.
Our miser, one day found the hole empty.
Our man in tears, moaned, sighed
Worried, tearing himself apart.
A passerby asked him why such anguish.
My treasure has been stolen.
Your treasure? stolen, where? near this rock?
-Hey! are we still in time of war,
That you had to bring it so far.? Wouldn’t you have done better
To keep it at home in the cupboard,
Than to change it’s location?
You could have used it anytime with no trouble.
Anytime? Good grief! Just like that?
Does money come as it goes?
I never touched it.- Tell me then, for pity’s sake,
Answered the other man, why are you so sorrowful
Since you never used this money:
Put a rock in it’s place,
It will be worth as much to you.

Who was Jean De La Fontaine?
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