A Carribean-Haitian Fable: The Toad and Simbi

Deep Freeze Fête’s cultural fables

Provided by: Mireille Isidore, a member of the Edmonton Haitian community. Arts on the Ave has allowed RCP to post this fable online.

Back in time, toads lived in rivers and springs with frogs and fish. All the animals were happy except Mrayizot the toad; he was extremely proud and hated noise of any kind. Annoyed by the other animals constantly drinking from his source, Toad decided to steal the key to the waters from Simbi, the wave siren.

One evening, as Simbi was fast asleep, Toad locked the water supply with two vigorous turns of the key. The spring quickly dried up, and Toad went into hiding in an inaccessible hatch.

“Clip, Clop, Clip, Clop,” Horse arrived cheerfully in the morning.

“Knock! Knock! Knock!”

“Who’s there?” Toad asks.

“It’s Horse, asking for a little water.”

“Move on, Horse, move on. The spring is dried up,” Toad replied.

“No more water,” sadly neighs Horse, leaving with his head down.

This rooster just wanted some water from the spring. | Rebecca Lippiatt

“Cock-a-doodle-doo!” Batay cheerfully swaggers in after Horse leaves.

“Knock! Knock! Knock!”

“Who’s there?” Toad asks.

“It’s Batay the Rooster, asking for a little water.”

“Move on, Batay the Rooster. Move on. The spring is dried up,” Toad replied.

Toad decides to steal the key to the water because he wants peace and quiet. | Rebecca Lippiatt

“No more water,” sadly sings Batay the Rooster, leaving with his head down.

“Pit-pit-coooo! Pit-pit-coooo!” Madame Pigeon has a hard time moving forward because her husband is continuously turning around her.

“Knock! Knock! Knock!”

“Who’s there?” Toad asks.

“It is Madame Pigeon asking for a little water.”

“Move on, Madame Pigeon. Move on.” The spring is dried up, Toad replied.

“No more water,” sadly coos Madame Pigeon, leaving with her head down.

Simbi slept for quite a long time, and when she finally awoke, she decided she needed a spring bath. However, an unpleasant surprise awaited her. Pure silence. No sound of water. She saw small, round, white pebbles among the dry reeds in what was the spring’s bed. No more water.

“Toad has hidden the key to the waters,” shouted in chorus all the animals.

Simbi ordered Toad to return the water key immediately.

Simbi unlocked the water with a vigorous turn of the key and water once again flowed through the reeds and round, white pebbles. The cicadas began to sing; the animals drank as much as they wanted and made plenty of babies. Simbi forgave Toad, but on one condition that he never put his little paws back in the springs or rivers again.

It is since that day that there are no more toads in the rivers.

It is since that day that there are no more toads in the rivers.


The Toad & Simbi
Elmwood Park Community League
12505 – 75 St

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