The World That Couldn't Be

Story, first published: Galaxy Science Fiction, Jan. 1958

A planter on a planet filled with dangerous animals starts hunting a creature destroying his crops. When he catches up with the creature, he saves its life and learns that it is a planetary mother of whom all species of creatures on the planet are a part. The "mother" returns the favor and saves the planter's life but strikes a bargain with the planter complaining, "it is an awful effort to keep on being mart."

Ewald, Robert J.: When the Fires Burn High and the Wind is from the North, p.60