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Smokyriversongs' Look At Indian Life And The Lore
Abenaki - Arapaho













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Abenaki Indian Lore:

 

 

Gluskabe Changes The Animals

After Gluskabe made human beings, he decided to see how the other creatures would get along with them. He called all of the animals together.

My friends, he said, I am going to say a word. When I say that word, I want to see what you will do. Then he took a breath and spoke the word which means human beings. Alnabe, he said.

The rabbits and deer, the caribou and elk turned and fled into the forest. The wolves and bears growled and then slipped back into the cover of the trees. Gluskabe nodded. This was how it should be. Almost all of the animals ran and hid when they heard the word for human beings. But not all of the animals ran away. The squirrel and the moose stayed where they were. In those days the squirrel was very large, bigger than the biggest bear. The moose too, was bigger than it is now. It stood above the biggest trees. Gluskabe raised one eyebrow and looked at the squirrel, Alnabe, he said again.

When the squirrel heard the word spoken a second time it became very angry. It picked up big rocks and threw them. It tore branches off the trees. Then Gluskabe said the word to the moose. It stomped its huge feet on the earth and knocked trees down with its big horns.

So, said Gluskabe to the squirrel. What will you do when you see a human being?

I will grab any human being I see and tear it apart, the squirrel snarled. I will kill all human beings

Gluskabe shook his head. No, nijia, he said. That is not how it will be when you see my children and my childrens children. He reached out a hand and picked up the squirrel. With his other hand he began to pet it. As he did so the squirrel grew smaller and smaller until it was littler than the smallest rabbit.

Now, Gluskabe said, you will not be able to hurt my people.

Even so, the squirrel still has a bad temper to this day. When you go into his forest, he will run around in the treetops throwing twigs down to you and threaten you in his small voice, for he still remembers when he was big and terrible.

Gluskabe turned to the moose. What will you do when you see a human being? he said.

The moose shook his antler. I will toss him on my horns. I will trample him under my feet.

No, Gluskabe said, That is not how it should be. He placed one hand on the Moses head between his horns and the other hand against the Moses nose. Show me how strong you are, nijia, Gluskabe said. Push as hard as you can."

The moose pushed, He pushed and pushes, and as he pushed he grew smaller. His neck grew shorter and his nose became bent. Then Gluskabe stopped. The moose was still large, but he was no longer a great danger to the people. But to this day, the moose has a broken nose and a short neck because of how he pushed and if you look between his horse you can see the mark of Gluskabes hand

That is how Gluskabe changed the animals so the world would be better for the people

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How Glooskabe Found The Summer

Long ago a mighty race of Indians lived near the sunrise, and they called themselves Wawaniki, the Children of Light. Glooskabe was their master. He was kind to his people and did many great deeds for them.

Once in Glooskabe's day it grew very cold. Snow and ice covered everything. Fires would not give enough warmth. The corn would not grow. His people were perishing from the cold and famine.

Glooskabe set forth for a the far north where all was ice. Here in a wigwam he found a great giant Winter. It was Winters' icy breath that had frozen the land.

Glooskabe entered the wigwam and sat down. Winter gave him a pipe, and they moke, the giant told tales of olden times when he reigned everywhere and all the land was silent, white and beautiful. His frost charm fell on Glooskabe as the giant talked on, Gloskabe fell asleep. for six months he slept like a bear, then do to his strength Glooskabe was able to wake up.

Glooskabe talebearer, the loon, a wild bird who lived on the lake shores, brought him strange news. He described a country far to the south where it was always warm. There lived the all powerful Summer who could easily overcome the giant Winter. To save the people from cold and famine and death. Glooskabe decided to find her.

Far off to the seashore he went. He sang the magic song which whales obey and up came an old friend. a whale who served as his carrier when he wished to go to sea.This whale had a rule for travelers. She always said: "You must close your eyes while I carry you. If you do not, i am sure to run aground on a reef or sandbar and be unable to get off. You could drowned.Glooskabe got on the whales' back and for many days they traveled together. Each day the water grew warmer and the air softer and sweeter, for it came from spicy shores. The odors were no longer those of salt, but of fruits and flowers.

Soon they found themselves in shallow water. Down in the sand clams were singing a song of warning: "Keep out to sea, for the water here is shallow.

The whale asked Glooskabe, who understood the language of all creatures: "What do they say?"

Glooskabe, wishing to land at once, only replied: They tell you to hurry. The whale hurried on until she was close to land. Now Gluskabe did the forbidden; he opened his left eye, to look. At once the whale struck hard on the beach so that Gluskabe, leaping from her back was able to walk to shore.

Thinking she could never get away, the whale became angry, But Glooskabe put one end of his bow against the whale and the other against the shore and with a mighty push, he sent her out into deeper water.

Far inland Glooskabe strolled, and found it warmer with every step. In the forest he came upon a beautiful woman dancing in the center of a group of young girls. Her long brown hair was crowned with flowers and her arms filled with bloosms. She was Summer.

Glooskabe knew that here at last was the one that with her charms could melt old Winters' heart.

Glooskabe caught her and would not let her go. Together they journeyed the long way back to the lodge of old WinterWinter welcomed Gooskabe. But he planned to freeze him to sleep again. This time however, Glooskabe did the talking. And soon Winter began to sweat. He knew his power was gone. His icy wigwam melted away. and Winter wept to see his power taken away.

Summer now used her power, and everything awoke. The grass grew green and the snow ran down to the rivers, carrying away the dead leaves.

Summer then said "Now that I have proven I am more powerful then you, I will give you all the country to the north for your own, and there I shall never disturb you. Six moths of every year you may return to Glooskabes' country and regin as before, but you are to be less severe with your power. During the other six months. I will come back from the south and rule the land." Old Winter could do nothing but accept this. So he appears in Glooskabes' country each year to regin for six months, but with a softer rule. When he comes, Summer goes home to her warm south land.

At the end of six months she returns to drive Old Winter away. She awakens the north and gives it the joys that only she can bestow.


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How Indian Summer Came To Be

Long ago there was a man who was known as Notkikad. This man was a good husband and father and he worked hard for his family. He planted a great deal every year and cared for his gardens so that there would be plenty of food. He was always greatful to Tabaldak, The Master Of Life. and gave thanks each harvest. One year though, things did not go well for him. There was an early frost and his garden was killed.

Notkikad was very troubled. His wife and children gathered berries and other foods from the forest. but without dried corn and squash and beans for them to keep over the long cold time, he was afraid they would not survive. Now the cold season was here and the leaves were falling from the trees and the freezing winds blew. What could he do?

That night before he slept, he made a small fire and offered tobacco to The Master of Life. "I have never asked for any help," he sai, "I have always been thankful for the blessings given to me. But I am troubled, not so much for myself as for my wife and children. I want to know what I can do." Then he went to bed and dreamed.

In his dream, The Master of Life came to him. "I am giving you these special seeds," The Master said, "I am also giving you a time in which to plant them.

When Notkikad awake he found the seeds were beside him. He went outside and though the leaves were still falling from the trees, the weather was now warm and pleasant as if it were still summer. With the help of his wife and children he prepared the siol and planted all the seeds.

The sun set and rose and the seeds had already germinated and lifted green shoots out of the earth. The sun rose and set again and now the young plants were already waist high. So it went for from day to day as the special seeds grew rapidly in a few days time.

Then Notkikad harvested his crop and dried the corn and beans and squash for the winter. He and his family stored all of the food in their wigwam. Then as suddenly as it had gone away the winds returned and that special season given by The Master Of Life was gone.

To this day, the people say, that special time is still given to us each year, even though we have none of the special seeds. That time which people call Indian Summer, was then called Nibubalnoba or "a man's summer" by the Abenaki. It reminds them to always be thankful.







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The Strange Origin Of Corn

A long time ago when Indians were first made, one man lived alone, far from the others.

he did not know fire, and so he lived on roots, bark and nuts. This man became very lonely for companionship. He grew tired of digging roots, and lost his appetite, and for several days lay dreaming in the sunshine. When he awoke, he saw someone standing near and, at first was frightened.

But when he heard the stranger's voice, his heart was glade, and he looked up.

he saw a beautiful woman with long light hair! "come to me." he whispered. But she did not, and when he tried to approach her, she moved farther away, He sang to her about his loneliness, and begged her not to leave him.

At last she replied, "If you do exactly what I tell you to do, I will be with you." he promised that he would try his very best. So she led him to a place where there was some very dry grass. "Now get two very dry sticks," she told him. "and rub them together fast while you hold them in the grass."

Soon a spark flew out. The grass caught fire, and as an arrow takes flight, the ground was burned over. Then the beautiful woman spoke again: " When the sun sets take me by the hair and drag me over the burned ground." "Oh I don't want to do that!" the man exclaimed "You must do what I tell you to do," she said. "Where ever you drag me, something like grass will spring up, and you will see something like hair coming from between the leaves. Soon seeds will be ready for your use."

he followed the beautiful woman's orders. And when the Indians see silk on the corn stalk, they know the beautiful woman has not forgotten them.

 

 

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Acoma Indian Lore:

 

 

The Origin of Summer and Winter

The Acoma chief had a daughter named Co-chin-ne-na-ko, called Co- chin for short, who was the wife of Shakok, the Spirit of Winter. After he came to live with the Acomas, the seasons grew colder and colder. Snow and ice stayed longer each year. Corn no longer matured. The people soon had to live on cactus leaves and other wild plants.

One day Co-chin went out to gather cactus leaves and burn off the thorns so she could carry them home for food. She was eating a singed leaf when she saw a young man coming toward her. He wore a yellow shirt woven of corn silk, a belt, and a tall pointed hat; green leggings made of green moss that grows near springs and ponds; and moccasins beautifully embroidered with

flowers and butterflies.

In his hand he carried an ear of green corn with which he saluted her. She returned the salute with her cactus leaf. He asked, "What are you eating?" She told him, "Our people are starving because no corn will grow, and we are compelled to live on these cactus leaves." "Here, eat this ear of corn, and I will go bring you an armful for you to take home with you," said the young man. He left and quickly disappeared from sight, going south. In a very short time, however, he returned, bringing a large bundle of green corn that he laid at her feet.

"Where did you find so much corn?" Co-chin asked.

"I brought it from my home far to the south." he replied. "There the corn grows abundantly and flowers bloom all year."

"Oh, how I would like to see your lovely country. Will you take me with you to your home?" she asked.

"Your husband, Shakok, the spirit of Winter, would be angry if I should take you away," he said.

"But I do not love him, he is so cold. Ever since he came to our village, no corn has grown, no flowers have bloomed. The people are compelled to live on these prickly pear leave," she said. "Well," he said. "Take this bundle of corn with you and do not throw away the husks outside of your door. Then come tomorrow and I will bring you more. I will meet you here." He said good-bye and left for his home in the south.

Co-chin started home with the bundle of corn and met her sisters, who had come out to look for her. They were very surprised to see the corn instead of cactus leaves. Co-chin told them how the young man had brought her the corn from his home in the south. They helped her carry it home.

When they arrived, their father and mother were wonderfully surprised with the corn. Co-chin minutely described in detail the young man and where he was from. She would go back the next day to get more corn from him, as he asked her to meet him there, and he would accompany her home.

"it is Miochin." said her father. "Yes it is Miochin," said her mother. "bring him home with you."

The next day, Co-chin-ne-ne-ko went to the place and met Miochin, for he really was Miochin, the Spirit of Summer. He was waiting for her and had brought big bundles of corn.

Between them they carried the corn to the Acoma village. There was enough to feed all of the people. Miochin was welcome at the home of the Chief. In the evening, as was his custom, Shakok, the Spirit of Winter and Co-chin's husband, returned from the north. All day he had been playing with the north wind, snow, sleet, and hail.

Upon reaching the Acoma village, he knew Miochin must be there and called out to him, "Ha Miochin, are you her?" Miochin came out and meet him. "Ha. Miochin Now I will destroy you."

"Ha, Shakok, I will destroy you," replied Miochin, advancing toward him, melting the snow and hail and turning the fierce wind into a summer breeze. The icicles dropped off and Shakok's clothing was revealed to be made of dry, bleached rushes.

Shakok said, :I will not fight you now, but will meet you here in four days and fight you till one of us is beaten. The victor will win Co-chin-ne-na-ko."

Shakok left in a rage, as the wind roared and shook the walls of White City. But the people were warm in their houses because Miochin was there,. The next day he left his own home in the south to make preparations to meet Shakok in combat.

First he sent for his friend Yat-Moot, who lived in the west, asking him to come help him in his fight with Shakok. Second he called all the birds and insects and four legged animals that lived in summer lands to help him. The bat was his advance guard and shield, as his tough skin could best withstand the sleet and hail that Shakok would throw at himOn the third day Yat-Moot kindled his fires, heating the thin, flat stones he was named after. Big clouds of smoke rolled up from the south and covered the sky.

Shakok was in the north and called to him all the winter birds and four legged animals of the winter lands to come hel him. The magpie was his shield and advance guard.

On the fourth morning, the two enemies could be seen rapidly approaching the Acoma village. In the north, black storm clouds of winter with snow, sleet and hail brought Shakok to the battle. In the south, Yat-Moot piled more wood on his fires and great puffs of steam and smoe arose and formed massive clouds. They were bringing Miochin the Spirit of Summer, to the battlefront. All his animals were blackened from the smoke. Forked blazes of lighting shot forth from the clouds. At the combatants reached White City. Flashes from the clouds singed the hair and feathers of Shakoks' animals and birds. Shakok and Miochin were now close together. Shakok threw snow, sleet and hail that hissed through the air of a blinding storm. Yat-Moot's fires and smoke melted Shakok's weapons, and he was forced to fall back, Finally he called a truce. Miochin agrees, and the winds stopped, and the snow and rain ceased falling.

They met at the White Wall of Acoma. Shakok said "I am defeated, you Miochin are the winner. Co-chin-ne-na-kois now yours forever." Then the men each agreed to rule one half of the year, Shakok for winter and Miochin for summer, and that neither would trouble the other thereafter. That is why we have a cold season for one half of the year and a warm season for the other.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alabama Indian Lore:

 

"The Dead Wife"

 

The wish to murder one's wife is balanced by the knowledge that one cannot live without her.

A man and his wife were going along a trail, when the man picked some berries of the button snakeroot and threw them gently at his wife, who was ahead of him. They passed through her body and she died. Then the woman's relatives took her and buried her, and her husband with her, although he was alive.

When night came, she went to a dance. The next night she was gone again. She came back covered with sweat. Then she said to her husband, "You have nothing to do here but lie still and be sad. Get on my back." So he got on her back' she jumped up and put him down outside, going through the earth with him. And when he reached his house and the people saw him, they said, "He has broken through the earth." They set out for the place and, when they got there, look all about, but nothing was disturbed.

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Alesa Indian Lore:

 

Coyote And The Two frog Women

Coyote had no wife, and nobody wanted him. So one day he decided that he would go to the coast to look for dried salmon to buy.
He wasn't gone long when he came upon two frog women who were digging in the ground for clams. They called,
"Where are you going?"
He acted as if he didn't hear. When they had yelled at him for a third time, he seemed to pay attention.
"What do you want?"
"Nothing. We've been trying to ask you a question."
"What is it?"
"Where are you going?"
"I'm going to the coast to look for salmon."
"All right; are you going to leave us some on your way back?"
"Certainly," said Coyote. So he went on.

Now he was thinking,
"I wonder how I'm going to play a trick on those two?"
He hadn't gone far when he saw some yellow-jacket wasps hanging on a branch. He went to their nest, took it off the tree, and closed it so that the yellow-jackets could not fly out. Then slipping it into his basket, he opened the nest again and tied the basket so that the wasps could fly around inside but not come out.

Coyote put the basket on like a pack and went back to the women digging for clams He didn't seem to pay any attention to them, so they shouted,
"Hey, are you on your way home?"
"Yes, I am on my way home."
"How much salmon are you bringing back?"
"Not very much."
"You promised to leave some behind for us two."
"All right, come and get it."

They came up and he began to untie his pack. "You two put your heads inside this basket!"
They did, whereupon he kicked the pack. The yellow-jackets came out so angry that they stung the two frog women to death.

After the women had died, Coyote took off their vulva and went on. Now whenever he felt like intercourse, he dug a hole in the ground, put those vulva there, and then did it.
Pretty soon the two women came to life again. One began to examine herself and cried, "My vulva is gone! How about you?"
The other looked, and hers was gone too! They agreed that it was Coyote who played the trick on them.

For this reason frogs, they say, have no female organs.

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Why The Deers' Teeth Are Blunt


The Rabbit felt sore because the Deer had won the horns, and resolved to get even. One day soon after the race he stretched a large grapevine across the trail and gnawed it nearly in two in the middle.


Then he went back a piece, took a good run, and jumped up at the vine. He kept on running and jumping up at the vine until the Deer came along and asked him what he was doing?

"Don't you see?" says the Rabbit. "I'm so strong that I can bite through that grapevine at one jump."

The Deer could hardly believe this, and wanted to see it done.. So the Rabbit ran back, made a tremendous spring, and bit through the vine where he had gnawed it before. The Deer, when he saw that, said, "Well, I can do it if you can." So the Rabbit stretched a larger grapevine across the trail, but without gnawing it in the middle.

Deer ran back as he had seen the Rabbit do, made a spring, and struck the grapevine right in the center, but it only flew back and threw him over on his head. He tried again and again, until he was all bruised and bleeding.

"Let me see your teeth," at last said the Rabbit. So the Deer showed him his teeth, which were long like a wolves' teeth, but not very sharp.

"No wonder you can't do it," says the Rabbit; "your teeth are too blunt to bite anything. Let me sharpen them for you like mine. My teeth are so sharp that I can cut through a stick just like a knife." And he showed him a black locust twig, of which rabbits gnaw the young shoots, which he had shaved off as well as a knife could do it, in regular rabbit fashion.

The Deer thought that just the thing. So the Rabbit got a hard stone with rough edges and filed and filed away at the Deers' teeth until they were worn down almost to the gums.

"It hurts," said the Deer; but the Rabbit said it always hurt a little when they began to get sharp; so the Deer kept quiet.

"Now try it," at last said the Rabbit. So the Deer tried again, but this time he could not bite at all.

"Now you've paid for your horns," said the Rabbit, as he jumped away through the bushes. Ever since then the Deers' teeth are so blunt that he can not chew anything but grass and leaves.

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Algonquin Indian Lore:

 

Ableequmooch, The Lazy Rabbit

In the Old Time, Ableegumooch the rabbit was the forest guide, and helped wayfarer lost in the woods. However, as time went on, the people and animals learned to find their own way through the forest and didn't need the rabbit's services as much.

Ableegumooch grew fat and lazy. If there was something easy and fun to do, he did it. If a thing were difficult or tiring, he did not. But that is no way to keep a wigwam stocked with food.

Often, poor old Noogumee (a term of respect amongst Indians for any elderly female), his grandmother, with whom he lived, had to hunt for food herself, or they would have gone hungry. And no matter how much she scolded him, Ableegumooch refused to change his ways.

Glooscap (see Glooscap and His People), far away in his lodge on Blomidon, saw that the rabbit was becoming a thoroughly useless creature. He must be warned against the dangers of laziness. So, wasting no time, Glooscap descended from his lodge to the beach in three huge strides, launched his canoe, and paddled across the Bay of Fundy to the shore near the rabbit's home.

It was a fine bright morning, the air cool and tasting of salt, as it always does in the Maritime Provinces. And presently along hopped the rabbit, singing with fine spirit:

"It's a lovely day to do nothing, nothing, all the day through!"

He paid no attention to the tasty leaves and berries he might have been gathering for dinner. He was much more interested in watching other people work. There was Miko the squirrel scampering up the big maple tree, his cheeks bulged out with nuts, pausing only long enough to scold Ableegumooch for coming too near his storehouse.

There was Mechipchamooech the bumble bee, busy at the goldenrod, gathering honey for his hive. And there was Teetees the blue jay, flying worms to his family in the big pine. It was all so interesting that Ableegumooch stopped beside a stately fir tree to enjoy the scene. Suddenly behind him, he heard a voice.

"Ableegumooch, be careful!"

The rabbit jumped and whirled about, but there was nobody there. The voice spoke again, from somewhere over his head.

"Take care, Ableegumooch, or your lazy ways will bring you pain and sorrow."

The rabbit looked up and saw the fir tree shake like a leaf in a storm, yet not a breath of wind stirred. Frightened out of his wits, he ran--and he never stopped running until he was safe at home, where he told his grandmother what had happened.

"Glooscap has given you a warning," said his grand mother. "Be sure to obey him, grandson, or you will be sorry."

The rabbit's legs were still trembling from fright and exertion, and he promised at once that he would take care to mend his lazy ways in future. And indeed, for a while, he went busily about his hunting and kept the wigwam well stocked with food. But, when autumn came, he grew lazy again and went back to his old careless ways.

"It's a lovely day to do nothing, nothing, all the day through!"

So sang Ableegumooch as he sauntered through the glory of autumn trees. Noogumee begged and scolded and pleaded, but he continued to spend more time visiting his neighbors than gathering food. One day, when winter had come to the land, he came to the wigwam of Keoonik the otter. Keoonik politely asked him to dine, and the rabbit promptly accepted. Keoonik turned to his elderly house keeper and addressed her in the usual native's fashion:

"Noogumee, prepare the meal."

Then he took some fish hooks and went off, the rabbit hopping along behind, curious to see what he was going to do. Keoonik sat on the snowy bank of the river and slid down an icy path into the water. In a moment, he reappeared with a string of eels which he carried to his grandmother, and she promptly cooked them for dinner.

"Gracious!" thought Ableegumooch. "If that isn't an easy way to get a living. I can do that as well as Keoonik," and he invited the otter to be his guest at dinner on the following day. Then he hurried home.

"Come," he said to his grandmother, "we are going to move our lodge down to the river." And in spite of all she could say, he insisted on moving it. Noogumee reminded him that the wigwam was empty of food, and he ought to be out hunting, but Ableegumooch paid no attention. He was busy making a slide like Keoonik's. The weather was cold, so all he had to do was pour water down the snowy bank, where it soon froze, and there was his fishing slide. Early next day, the guest arrived. When it was time for dinner, Ableegumooch said to his grandmother:

"Noogumee, prepare the meal."

"There is nothing to prepare," said she, sadly.

"Oh, I will see to that," said the rabbit with a confident laugh, and he took his place at the top of the slide to go fishing. When he tried to push off, however, he found it was not so easy. His coat was rough and bulky and dry, not smooth and slippery like the otter's. He had to wriggle and push with his heels until at last he slid down and plunged into the water. The cold took his breath quite away, and he suddenly remembered he was unable to swim. Struggling and squealing, he thought no more of fishing, for he was in great danger of drowning.

"What on earth is the matter with him?" Keoonik asked the grandmother.

"I suppose he has seen someone else do that," sighed Noogumee, "and he thinks he can do it too."

Keoonik helped the freezing, half-drowned rabbit out of the water and, since there was nothing to eat, went home hungry and disgusted.

But do you think that cold bath cured Ableegumooch? Not at all. The very next day, as he ran idly through the forest, he came to the lodge of some female woodpeckers. He was delighted when these woodpeckers invited him to dinner.

He watched eagerly to see how they found food.

One of the woodpeckers took a dish, went up the side of an old beech tree and quickly dug out a plentiful supply of food, which was cooked and placed before the rabbit.

"My, oh my!" thought Ableegumooch. "How easily some people get a living. What is to prevent me from getting mine in that fashion?" And he told the woodpeckers they must come and dine with him.

On the day following, they appeared at the rabbit's lodge and Ableegumooch said to his grandmother importantly:

"Noogumee, prepare the meal."

"You foolish rabbit," said she, "there is nothing to prepare."

"Make the fire," said the rabbit grandly, "and I shall see to the rest."

He took the stone point from an eel spear and fastened it on his head in imitation of a woodpecker's bill, then climbed a tree and began knocking his head against it. Soon his head was bruised and bleeding, and he lost his hold and fell to the earth with a tremendous crash. The woodpeckers could not keep from laughing.

"Pray what was he doing up there?"

"I suppose he has seen someone else do that," said Noogumee, shaking her head, "and thinks he can do it too." And she advised them to go home, as there would be no food for them there that day.

Now, sore as he was, you would certainly think the rabbit had learned his lesson. Yet, a day or two later, he was idling in the woods as usual when he came upon Mooin the Bear, who invited him to dinner. He was greatly impressed at the way in which the bear got his meal. Mooin merely took a sharp knife and cut small pieces off the soles of his feet. These he placed in a kettle on the fire, and in a short while they enjoyed a delicious meal.

"This must be the easiest way of all to get a dinner," marveled Ableegumooch, and he invited Mooin to dine with him next day. Now what the rabbit did not know was that the bears preserve food on their feet. They press ripe blueberries with their paws and, after the cakes have dried upon them, cut bits off to eat. The silly rabbit thought Mooin had actually cut pieces off his paws!

At the appointed time, Ableegumooch ordered his grand mother to prepare the meal, and when she said there was nothing to prepare, he told her to put the kettle on and he would do the rest. Then he took a stone knife and began to cut at his feet as he had seen Mooin do. But oh dear me, it hurt. It hurt dreadfully! With tears streaming down his cheeks, he hacked and hacked, first at one foot and then at the other. Mooin the Bear was greatly astonished.

"What on earth is the fellow trying to do?" he asked.

Noogumee shook her head dismally.

"It is the same old thing. He has seen someone else do this."

"Well!" said Mooin crossly, "It is most insulting to be asked to dinner and get nothing to eat. The trouble with that fellow is-- he's lazy!" and he went home in a huff.

Then at last, Ableegumooch, nursing his sore feet, remembered what Glooscap had said. All at once, he saw how silly he had been.

"Oh dear!" he said. "My own ways of getting food are hard, but others' are harder. I shall stick to my own in the future," and he did.

From then on, the wigwam of Ableegumooch and his grandmother was always well stored with food, winter and summer, and though he still sings, his song has changed

"It's a wiser thing to be busy, busy, Constantly!

And far away on Blomidon, Glooscap, seeing his foolish rabbit mend his ways at last, set a light to his pipe and smoked contentedly.

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Alogon And The Sky Girl


Algon was a great hunter who found a strange circle cut in the prairie grass. Hiding in the bushes nearby, he watched to see what might have caused it. Finally, a great willow basket descended from the sky bearing twelve beautiful maidens.


The maidens got out of the basket and began singing celestial songs and doing circle dances. All of the girls were beautiful, but the most beautiful of all was the youngest, with whom Algon was immediately smitten.

He ran toward the circle in the hope of stealing her away, but just as he arrived, the girls were alarmed and left in the basket, which flew high into the sky. This happened again three more times, but Algon's resolve only grew. Then he devised a strategy.

He placed a hollow tree trunk near the circle. Inside the tree trunk lived a family of mice. He took some charms out of his medicine bag and transformed himself into a mouse. When the girls in the basket next arrived, he and the other mice ran among the girls. The girls stomped on the mice killing all of them but Algon, who then resumed his human form and carried off his beloved.

He took her to his village and in time she fell in love with him. They had a son and the three lived very happily for a time. But as the years passed, the sky-girl grew very homesick. She spent the entire day gazing up at the sky, thinking of her sisters and parents. This homesickness continued until she could no longer bear it. So she built a magic willow basket, placed her son and some gifts for her people in it, climbed in, and headed for the sky. She remained there for years.

In her absence, Algon pined for his wife and son. Every day he went to sit in the magic circle, in the hope that they would return. He was now growing old.

Meanwhile, in the far-off sky-country, his son was growing into manhood. The lad asked questions about his father, which made the sky-girl miss Algon. She and her son spoke to her father, the chief of the sky-people. He told them to go back to the earth, but ordered them to return with Algon and the identifying feature of each of the earth animals.

Then the sky-girl and the son returned to earth. Algon was overjoyed to see them and was eager to gather the gifts the sky-chief wanted. From the bear, he took a claw; from the eagle, hawk, and falcon, a feather; from the raccoon, its teeth; and from the deer, its horns and hide. He placed all of these gifts in a special medicine bag, and ascended with his wife and son to the sky-country in their willow basket. His father-in-law divided the tokens among his people, offering tokens to Algon and the sky-girl; and they chose the falcon feather. The chief said that they should always be free to travel between the sky-country and the earth, and so Algon and his wife became falcons. Their descendants still fly high and swoop down over the forests and prairies.



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Algonquin Creation Myth

The great Earth Mother had two sons, Glooskap and Malsum. Glooskap was good, wise, and creative; Malsum was evil, selfish, and destructive.


When their mother died, Glooskap went to work creating plants, animals, and humans from her body. Malsum, in contrast, made poisonous plants and snakes.

As Glooskap continued to create wonderful things, Malsum grew tired of his good brother and plotted to kill him.

In jest, Malsum bragged that he was invincible, although there was one thing that could kill him: the roots of the fern plant.

He badgered Glooskap for days to find the good brother's vulnerability. Finally, as Glooskap could tell no lies, he confided that he could be killed only by an owl feather. Knowing this, Malsum made a dart from an owl feather and killed Glooskap.

The power of good is so strong, however; that Glooskap rose from the dead, ready to avenge himself. Alive again, Glooskap also knew that Malsum would continue to plot against him.

Glooskap realized that he had no choice but to destroy Malsum in order that good would survive and his creatures would continue to live. So he went to a stream and attracted his evil brother by loudly saying that a certain flowering reed could also kill him.

Glooskap then pulled a fern plant out by the roots and flung it at Malsum, who fell to the ground dead. Malsum's spirit went underground and be-came a wicked wolf-spirit that still occasionally torments humans and animals, but fears the light of day.



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Algonquin Flood Myth



The god Michabo was hunting with his pack of trained wolves one day when he saw the strangest sight-the wolves entered a lake and disappeared. He followed them into the water to fetch them and as he did so, the entire world flooded.


Michabo then sent forth a raven to find some soil with which to make a new earth, but the bird returned unsuccessful in its quest.

Then Michabo sent an otter to do the same thing, but again to no avail.

Finally he sent the muskrat and she brought him back enough earth to begin the reconstruction of the world. The trees had lost their branches in the flood, so Michabo shot magic arrows at them that immediately became new branches covered with leaves.

Then Michabo married the muskrat and they became the parents of the human race.


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Glooscap And The Baby

Glooscap, having conquered the Kewawkqu', a race of giants and magicians, and the Medecolin, who were cunning sorcerers, and Pamola, a wicked spirit of the night, besides hosts of fiends, goblins, cannibals, and witches, felt himself great indeed, and boasted to a woman that there was nothing left for him to subdue.

But the woman laughed and said:
"Are you quite sure, Master? There is still one who remains un conquered, and nothing can overcome him."

In some surprise Glooscap inquired the name of this mighty one.
"He is called Wasis," replied the woman, "but I strongly advise you to have no dealings with him."

Wasis was only a baby, who sat on the floor sucking a piece of maple sugar and crooning a little song to himself.
Now Glooscap had never married and was ignorant of how children are managed, but with perfect confidence he smiled at the baby and asked it to come to him.

The baby smiled back but never moved, whereupon Glooscap imitated a beautiful bird song. Wasis, however, paid no attention and went on sucking his maple sugar.

Unaccustomed to such treatment, Glooscap lashed himself into a rage and in terrible and threatening accents ordered Wasis to come to him at once.
But Wasis burst into dire howls, which quite drowned the god's thundering, and would not budge for any threats.

Glooscap, thoroughly aroused, summoned all his magical resources.
He recited the most terrible spells, the most dreadful incantations.
He sang the songs which raise the dead, and those which send the devil scurrying to the nethermost depths.

But Wasis merely smiled and looked a trifle bored.

At last Glooscap rushed from the hut in despair, while Wasis, sitting on the floor, cried:
"Goo, goo!".

And to this day the Indians say that when a baby says
"Goo," he remembers the time when he conquered the mighty Glooscap

.

 


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Glooskap Grants Three Wishes

When men heard that Glooskap, would grant a wish to anyone who would come to him,

three men resolved to attempt the journey.

The path was long and the way hard, and they suffered much during the seven years that it took them. But while they were still three months journey from his home, they heard the barking of his dogs, and as they drew nearer day by day, the noise was louder, And so after great trials, they found him, and he made them welcome and entertained them.

before they went, he asked them what they wanted. And the eldest, an honest, simple man with no standing at home, because he was a bad hunter, said he wanted to be a master at catching and killing game. then Glooskap gave him a flute, or magic pipe, which pleases every ear and has the power of persuading every animal to follow him who plays it. The man thanked Glooskap and left.

The second man upon being asked what he would have, replied, "the love of many women." And when Glooskap asked how many, he said, "I don't care how many, just so there are enough and more than enough." Glooskap seemed displease to hear this, but smiling he gave the man a bag which was tightly tied and told him not to open it until he reached home. So the man thanked Glooskap and left.

The third man was handsome but a foolish young fellow whose whole heart was set on making people laugh. When asked what he really wanted, he said he would like to be able to make a certain sound, like breaking wind or belching, which was frequently heard in those primitive times among all the Wabenki. The effect of this noise is such that they who hear it always burst out laughing. To him Glooskap was also affable, securing from the woods a magic root which, when eaten, would create the noise the young man sought. But Glooskap warned him not to touch the root until he got home. Elated, the man thanked Glooskap and leftIt had taken the three Indians seven years to reach Glooskap, but seven days were all they needed to return home. Yet only one of them ever saw his lodge again.

This was the hunter, who trudged through the woods with his pipe in his pocket and peace in his heart, happy to know that as long as he lived he would always have venison in his larder.

The man who loved women, yet had never even won a wife, was anxious to know whether Glooskaps' magic would work. He hadn't gone very far into the woods before he opened the bag. And out flew hundreds of white doves. Also beautiful girls with black eyes and flowing hair. Wild with passion, they threw their arms around him and kissed him as he responded to their embraces. But they crowded thicker and thicker, wilder and more passionate. He asked them to give him air, but they would not, and he tried to escape, but he could not. and so panting, and crying for breath, he smothered. And those who came that way found him dead, but what became of the girls no man knows.

Now the third Indian went merrily along the path when all at once it flashed on his mind that Glooskap had given him a present. And without the least thought of Glooskaps' warning he drew out the root and ate it, Scarcely had he done this before he realized that he had the power of uttering the weird noise. It rang over the hills in the distance, it echoed until it was answered by a solemn owl, and the young man felt that it was indeed wonderful. So he walked on trumpeting as he went, happy as a bird.

But by and by he begun to feel weary of his performance. Seeing a deer, he drew an arrow

and was just about to shoot when in spite of himself the wild noise broke forth like a demons' laugh. The deer bounded away, The young man was cursed. By the time he reached his home half dead from hunger, he was not much to laugh over, though at first the Indians did chuckle, which cheered him up a little. But as the days went on they wearied of his joke and began to avoid him. His unpopularity made him feel that his life was a burden, and he went into the woods and killed himself.

 

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Rabbit Calls a Truce

One day, when Keoonik was in swimming, Ableegumooch ran off with a string of eels he had left on the shore. Keoonik rushed out of the water and went in angry pursuit. He had no difficulty in tracking the rabbit, for the mark of the fish, touching the ground between jumps, clearly showed the way. He was astonished, however, when the trail ended at a clearing in the woods where a withered old woman sat by a small fire.

"Kwah-ee, Noogumee," said Keoonik, using the formal address for an elderly female. "Did you see a rabbit hopping this way, dragging a string of eels?" "Rabbit? Rabbit?" muttered the old woman. "What kind of animal is that?"

The otter explained that it was a small brown jumping creature with long ears and a short tail. "I saw no such animal," the old squaw grumbled, "but I'm glad you came along, for I'm cold and sick. Do please gather a little wood for my fire." Obligingly, Keoonik went off to do so. Returning with the wood, he stared around in surprise. The old woman was gone. On the spot where she had sat, he saw the mark of a rabbit's haunches, and familiar paw-prints leading away in to the woods. Then he remembered that Ableegumooch was very clever at changing his appearance and fooling people.

"Oh, that miserable rabbit!" cried Keoonik and set off again on the trail. This time the tracks led straight to a village of the Penobscot Indians, where Keoonik could see the rabbit in conversation with a thin sad man wearing the feather of a Chief in his hair string. The wily otter cut himself a stout stick and waited behind a tree. Presently, Ableegumooch came strolling down the path, his face creased in an absent-minded frown. Keoonik was ready for him. He brought the stick down on the rabbit's head with a thud, and Ableegumooch collapsed on the grass. "That should teach him," thought Keoonik, with satisfaction, and he sat down to wait for the rabbit to recover. Presently Ableegumooch came to his senses and staggered to his feet with a dazed expression. "What did you do with my eels?" demanded Keoonik.

"I gave them to the Indians," muttered the rabbit, exploring the bump on his head with a groan. "What did you do that for, you silly creature?" "Those Penobscots are starving, Keoonik," said the rabbit. "For many moons someone has been stealing their food." "Just the same," grumbled Keoonik, "those were my eels."

The rabbit thumped his hind legs on the ground with an air of great determination.

"Keoonik, we must find the robbers and punish them!"

"We?" asked Keoonik in astonishment.

"Yes, you and I," said his companion firmly. "Let there be a truce between us until we discover the thieves." Keoonik thought to himself that Ableegumooch was a fine one to complain of people stealing other people's food! However, he too felt sorry for the Penobscots. "All right," he agreed. "We'll have a truce," and they shook hands solemnly. Then they started back to the village to ask the Chief what they might do to help, but when they were still some way off they saw two other animals talking to him. These were Uskoos the Weasel and Abukcheech the Mouse, two animals so troublesome even their own families would have nothing to do with them.

"Let's listen," whispered Ableegumooch, drawing Keoonik behind a tree.

"We will find those robbers for you, Chief," they heard Uskoos say. "Don't you worry about a thing." "You can depend on us," chimed in Abukcheech.

Ableegumooch nudged the otter.

"Did you hear that?"

"I heard," said Keoonik. "So the Indians don't need our help after all."

"I wonder," said the rabbit thoughtfully.

"What do you wonder? And why are we whispering?"

"Shhh! Let's think about it a little, Keoonik. Have you any idea how those two get their living? They sleep all day and go hunting only after dark."

"Some of us like to hunt after dark," Keoonik said fairly.,p> "Well, but listen," said the rabbit. "All the fur robes in the camp have been chewed and scratched and spoiled. What animals chew and scratch wherever they go?"

"Weasels and mice," answered Keoonik promptly. "Very well. Let's follow them and see what happens."

So Keoonik and Ableegumooch, keeping out of sight themselves, followed the weasel and the mouse a very long way, to a large burrow in the side of a hill where a number of other weasels and mice of bad reputation were gathered. All greeted Uskoos and Abukcheech and listened to what they had to say, while the rabbit and otter, hidden behind a blueberry bush, listened too.

"We were very sympathetic," smirked Uskoos, "and said we would help them."

"So now they won't suspect us," said Abukcheech, and all the mice and weasels chortled gleefully.

"It is time now," said Uskoos, "to call all the animals together and plan the conquest of the Penobscots. For we are smarter than the Indians and deserve to have all the food for ourselves."

"Very true!" all shouted.

"How will we get the rest to join us?" asked Abukcheech.

"The smaller ones will be afraid to say no to us," declared Uskoos. "We will use trickery on the others. We will tell them the Penobscots plan to destroy all the animals in the land, and we must unite in order to defend ourselves."

"Then, with Wolf and Bear and Moose to help us," cried Abukcheech, "we'll soon have all the Indians at our mercy!"

The otter and the rabbit could hardly believe their ears. Someone must warn the Indians.

"Come on," whispered Keoonik, but the rabbit only crouched where he was, tense and unmoving. The fact is, he wanted to sneeze! Ableegumooch wanted to sneeze more than he ever wanted to sneeze in his life before, but he mustn't sneeze--the sound would give them away. So he tried and he tried to hold that sneeze back. He pressed his upper lip, he grew red in the face, and his eyes watered-- but nothing was any good.

"Ahhhhhh-ahhhhhh-choo!"

Instantly, the weasels and mice pounced on Keoonik and Ableegumooch and dragged them out of hiding.

"Spies!" growled Uskoos.

"Kill them, kill them!" screamed Abukcheech.

"I have a better plan," said Uskoos. "These two will be our first recruits." Then he told the prisoners they must become members of his band, or be killed.

Poor Ableegumooch. Poor Keoonik. They did not wish to die, yet they could never do as the thieves wished, for the Penobscots were their friends. Ableegumooch opened his mouth, meaning to defy the villains no matter what the consequences, and then his mouth snapped shut. He had heard a strange sound, the sound of a flute piping far away, and he knew what it was. It was the magic flute of Glooscap, and the Great Chief was sending him a message. Into the rabbit's head popped the memory of something Glooscap had said to him once long ago, half in fun, half in earnest. "Ableegumooch," he seemed to hear the words again, "the best way to catch a snake is to think like a snake!" At once the rabbit understood. He set himself to think like the mice and the weasels, feeling the greed and selfishness that was in them. Then he had a plan.

"Very well," he said, "we will join you. Those Indians are certainly very cruel and dishonest. They deserve the worst that can happen to them. Why, only yesterday"--and here he gave Keoonik a secret nudge--"my friend and I saw them hide away a great store of food in a secret place. Didn't we, Keoonik?"

"Oh, yes, certainly," stammered Keoonik, wondering what trick the rabbit was up to now.

The weasels and mice jumped about in mad excitement. "Where? Where? Where is this place?"

"Take us there at once!" cried Uskoos, licking his lips.

"Certainly," said Ableegumooch, starting old towards the woods. "Just follow us."

Abukcheech the Mouse was right at their heels, but Uskoos soon shouldered him aside. Then each animal fought to be in front, and in this way all rushed through the forest, across the meadows, down into the valleys and over the hills, until at last--pushing and panting and grunting--they all reached the bottom of a grassy hill. Ableegumooch pointed to a pile of rocks at the top.

"You will find the wealth you seek up there," he cried. "Hurry, hurry! The best will go to those who get there first."

Away they all went, each struggling to be first. The rabbit and the otter stood aside and watched as the wild mob scrambled up the hill--up and up until suddenly, too late to stop, they found themselves teetering on the edge of a cliff, with nothing in front of them but space, and the sea far below. Those who were first tried to stop but were pushed over by those crowding behind--and so, screaming with terror, down they all went, headlong into the sea.

"Well," said Keoonik, peering over the edge of the cliff with a shiver, "their tribes are well rid of them."

"So are the Penobscots," said the rabbit. "And now that together we have saved our friends from the mice and the weasels, Keoonik, let us go home together in peace as good neighbors should."

"I'm willing," said the otter, but he had no sooner taken a step than he sprawled on the ground. Ableegumooch had tripped him.

"That's for the knock on the head!" the rabbit laughed, and made for the woods. Picking himself up furiously, Keoonik was after him, shouting, "Just wait till I catch you, I'll teach you to play tricks!" Their truce was over.

And Glooscap, looking down from Blomidon, laughed at their antics, for he knew that with all their mischief there was no greed or spite in the hearts of Keoonik and Ableegumooch, against the Indians or against each other.

 

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Glooskap And His People

In the beginning, there was just forest and sea; no people and no animals.

Then Glooskap came.

Where this wondrous giant was born and when , none can tell, but he and his brother Malsum came from somewhere in they Sky to the part of the north nearest the sun. he found a granite island covered with spruce trees. In the beginning this was his lodge.

The Great chief Glooskape looked and lived lived like an ordinary man except that he was twice as tall, twice as strong, and possessed great magic. He was never sick, never married, never grew old and never died.

He had a magic belt which gave him great power only for good. Malsum, his twin brother, also of great stature, had the head of a wolf and the body of an Indian. Malsum knew magic too, but he used his power for evil.

As Glooskap set about his work, the air was fragrant with balsam and the tang of the sea.

First, out of the rocks, he made the Little People; the fairies or Megumoowesoos. these were small hairy creatures who dwelt among the rocks and made such wonderful music on the flute that all who heard it were bewitched.

From amongst the Megumoowesoos, Glooskap chose a servant, Marten, who was like a younger brother to him.

Next Glooskap made men. Taking up his great bow, he shot arrows into trunks of ash trees. Out of the trunks of the trees stepped men and women. They were strong and graceful people with light brown skin and shinning black hair.

Glooskap called them the Wabanaki, which means those who live where the day breaks.

In time the Wabanaki left and divided into separate tribes.

gazing at his handiwork, Glooskap was pleased and his shout of triumph made the tall pines bend like grass.

He told the people he was their Great Chief and would rule them with love and justice. he taught them how to build birch bark wigwam and canoes, how to make weirs for catching fish, and how to identify plants useful in medicine, He taught them the names of all the Stars who were his brothers.

Then from among them he chose an elderly woman whom he called Nooqumee, or grandmother . Nooqumee was his house keeper.

Now finally, out of rocks and clay, Glooskap made the animals: Miko the squirrel, Team the moose, Mooin the bear, and many others. Malsum looked on enviously, thinking he too should have had a hand in creation. but he had not been given that power/ He whispered an evil charm, and the reminder of the clay in Glooskap hands twisted and fell to the ground in the form of a strange animal. this animal was not beaver, nor badger nor wolverine, but something of all three, and capable of taking any of these forms if he chose.

"His name is Lox!" said Malsum triumphantly.

"So be it," said Glooskap. "let Lox live amongst us in peace, so long as he remains a friend." Yet he watched Lox closely, for he could read the heart and knew Lox had Malsum's evil in him.

Now Glooskap had made the animals all very large, most of them larger and stronger then man. Lox, the trouble maker, at once saw his chance to make mischief.

He went in his wolverine body to Team the moose and admired his fine antler, which reached up to the tallest pine tree. "If you should ever meet a man," said Lox, "you could toss him on your horns up to the top of the world.

Now Team who was just a little bit stupid, went at once to Glooskap and said, "Please, Master, give me a man, so I can toss him on my horns up to the top of the world."
"I should say not!" cried Glooskap, and touched Team with his hand. The moose was suddenly the size he is today.

then Lox went in his badger body to the squirrel and said, "With that magnificent tail of yours, Miko you could destroy every lodge in the village."

"So I could." said Miko proudly, and his great tail swept the nearest wigwam right off the ground. But the Great chief was near. He caught Miko up in his hand and stroked the squirrels' back until he became the size he is today.

"From now on," said the Master, "you will live in trees and keep your tail where it belongs. "And since then Miko has carried his bushy tail on his back.

Next Lox put on his beaver shape and went to Mooin the bear, who was hardly any bigger than he is today. "Mooin" said Lox, "suppose you met a man, what would you do to him?" The bear thought for a minute, and then said "eat him."with a grin he added, "I would shallow him whole." and as he said this he felt his mouth get smaller.

"From now on" he heard Glooskap say, "you will only be able to swallow small creatures."

Now the Great chief was greatly annoyed by the way his animals were acting, and wondered if he should have made them. He summoned all the animals.and gave them a solemn warning, "I have made you man's equal, but you wish to be master. Take care, or he may become yours!"

this did not worry the troublemaker Lox, who only resolved to be more cunning in the future, He knew very well that Malsum was jealous of Glooskap and wished to be master of the Indians himself. He also knew that both brothers had magic powers and that neither could be killed except in one certain way.

What that way was, each kept secret from all but the Stars, whom they trusted. Each sometimes talked in the starlight to the people of he Sky.

"Little does Malsum know," said Glooskap to the Stars, "that I can never be killed except by the blow of a flowering rush." Not far off, Malsum boasted to those same Stars, "I am quite safe from Glooskaps' power. I can do anything I like, for nothing can harm me but the roots of a flowering fern."

Now, alas, Lox was hidden close by and overheard both secrets. Seeing how he might turn this to his own advantage, he went to Malsum and said with a knowing smile. "What will you give me, Malsum, if I tell you Glooskaps' secret?"

"Anything you like." cried Malsum. "Quick tell me!"

"Nothing can hurt Glooskap save a flowering rush," said the traitor. "now give me a pair of wings, like the pigeon, so I can fly."

But Malsum laughed instead.

"What need has a beaver of wings?" and kicking the troublemaker aside, he sped off to find a flowering rush. Lox picked himself up and furiously hurried to Glooskap.

"Master!" he cried, "Malsum knows your secret and is about to kill you. If you would save yourself know that only the root of a flowering fern can destroy him!"

Glooskap snatched up the nearest fern, root and all, and just in time: his evil brother was upon him. shouting his war cry. All of the animals ( who were angry at Glooskap for reducing their size and power) cheered for Malsum, but the Indians were afraid for their Master.

Glooskap braced his feet against a cliff, and Malsum paused. For a moment, the two crouched face to face waiting for a moment to strike. Then the wolf like Malsum lunged at Glooskap's head. Twisting his body aside, the Great Chief flung his weapon. It went swift to it's target, and Malsum leapt back but to late. The fern root pierced his envious heart, and he died.

Now the Indians rejoiced, and the animals crept sullenly away. Only Lox came to Glooskap, impudently.

"I'll have my reward now, Master," he said " a pair of wings, like the pigeons'

"Faithless creature!" Glooskap thundered, knowing full well who had betrayed him, "I made no such deal. Be gone!" and he hurled stone after stone at the fleeing Lox.

Now Glooskap called his people around him and said, "I made the animals to be man's friends, but they behave with selfishness and treachery. Hereafter, they shall be your servants and provide you with food and clothing."

Then he showed the men how to make bows and arrows and stone tipped spears, and how to use them.

He then showed the women how to scrape hides and turn them into clothing.

"Now you have power over even the largest wild creatures," he said. "Yet I charge you to use this power gently. If you take more game than you need for food and clothing, or kill for pleasure of killing, then you will be visited by a pitiless giant named Famine, and when he comes among men, they suffer hunger and die."

The people promised to obey Glooskap in this, as in all things. But now to their dismay, they saw Marten launch the Masters' canoe and Noogumee entering it with Glooskap's household goods. Glooskap was leaving them!

"I must dwell now in a different place,' said the Great Chief, "so that you, my people, will learn to stand alone, and become brave and resourceful. Nevertheless, I shall never be far from you, and whoever seeks me diligently in time of trouble will find me,"

Then waving farewell to his sorrowful Wabanaki, Glooskap set off for the mainland.

Glooskap built his lodge in a place he named Blomidon.

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The Spirit Bride

There was once a young warrior whose bride died on the eve of their wedding. Although he had distinguished himself by his bravery and goodness, the death left the young man inconsolable.


He was unable to eat or sleep. Instead of hunting with the others, he just spent time at the grave of his bride, staring into the air.

However, one day he happened to overhear some elders speaking about the path to the spirit world. He listened intently and memorized the directions to the most minute detail. He had heard that the spirit world was far to the south. He immediately set out on his journey. After two weeks, he still saw no change in the landscape to indicate that the spirit world was near.

Then he emerged from the forest and saw the most beautiful plain he had ever seen. In the distance was a small hut where an ancient wise man lived. He asked the wise man for directions.

The old man knew exactly who the warrior was and whom he sought. He told the lad that the bride had passed by only a day before. In order to follow her, the warrior would have to leave his body behind and press on in his spirit. The spirit world itself is an island in a large lake that can be reached only by canoes waiting on this shore. However, the old man warned him not to speak to his bride until they were both safely on the island of the spirits.

Soon the old man recited some magic chants and the warrior felt his spirit leave his body. Now a spirit, he walked along the shore and saw a birch bark canoe. Not a stone's throw away was his bride, entering her own canoe. As he made his way across the water and looked at her, he saw that she duplicated his every stroke. Why didn't they travel together? One can only enter the spirit world alone and be judged only on one's individual merits.

Midway through the journey, a tempest arose. It was more terrible than any he had ever seen. Some of the spirits in canoes were swept away by the storm-these were those who had been evil in life. Since both the warrior and his bride were good, they made it through the tempest without incident and soon the water was as smooth as glass beneath a cloudless sky.

The island of the blessed was a beautiful place where it was always late spring, with blooming flowers and cloudless skies, never too warm or too cold. He met his bride on the shore and took her hand. They had not walked ten steps together when a soft sweet voice spoke to them-it was the Master of Life.

The Master told them that the young warrior must return as he came; it wasn't his time yet. He was to carefully trace his steps back to his body, put it on, and return home. He did this and became a great chief, happy in the assurance that he would see his bride once again.



When the Snake Bites the Sun

Long, Long ago in the east behind the world there lived a big fat mother sun and a little daughter sun.
They lived in hollow logs. They came out to give the world sunshine.
Soon the river was dried up, and the animals had no water.
The mother got too fat for her log so she left the daughter alone. The little sun went over the sea.
On land there were two Men. A good man who looked after the sun, and a bad man. The bad man stopped the sun. So the sun climbed up in space getting hotter as she went.
There was one problem, there was a snake that lived up there. The snake bit the sun. The sun floated down until it got stuck in the fork of a tree and from that day the sun made it from the east to the west.



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Alta - Baja Indian Lore:

 

Cricket And Cougar

Cougar was walking in the forest, and he jumped onto a fallen log to look around. From inside the log came a tiny voice.

"Get off the roof of my lodge !" Out from the rotten end of the log came a tiny Cricket. "You are standing on the roof of my lodge, Cougar," said the little insect. "You must step off now, or the roof pole will break and my lodge will fall in."

"Who are you to tell me what to do?" asked Cougar sternly, although he did step off the log. He lowered his head until his nose was very close to Cricket. "In the forest, I am the chief of the animals !"

"Chief or no Chief," said Cricket bravely, "I have a cousin who is mightier than you, and he would avenge me."

"I don't believe you little insect," snarled Cougar, "Believe me not Cricket," said Cricket. "it is so."

"Let you cousin come to this place tomorrow, when the sun is high, and we will see who is the mightier," said Cougar. "If your cousin does not prove himself to me, I will crush you and your entire lodge with my paw !" Cougar turned and bounded off through the forest.

The next day, when the sun was high, Cougar came back along the same trail. He stopped over the log and called to Cricket. "Cricket, come out ! Let me meet your mighty cousin !"

Just then a tiny mosquito flew up from the log buzzed into the big cats ear.

"What is this?" cried Cougar, who had never seen or heard a mosquito before. The mosquito begun to bite the soft inner ear of the Cougar, and drank from his blood. "Ahrr ! Ahrr !" cried the cougar in pain, "get out of my ear !" The cougar pawed at his ear, and ran around in a circle shaking his . The mosquito bit him again and again.

Cricket came out of the log and called up to Cougar. "Are you ready to leave my lodge alone?"

Cougar said that he would so Mosquito came out of Cougars' ear and went into the log lodge with Cricket. Cougar ran down the trail and never went that way again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alutes Indian Lore:

 

The Origin Of The Winds

Long ago, when the world was still quite new, there were no winds at all, neither the gentle breeze of summer nor the fierce winter gale. Everything was perfectly still. Nothing disturbed the marsh grass on the shore and when snow fell, it fell straight to the earth instead of blowing and swirling into drifts.

At this time, in a village near the mouth of the Yukon River, there lived a couple who had no children. This mad them very sad. Often the woman would sigh and say, "How happy we would be if only we had a child."

Her husband would sigh too and answer, "Yes, if we had a son, I would teach him to stalk bears and seals over the ice-floes, and to make traps and snares. What will come of us in our old age with no one to provide for us? Who will give festivals for our souls when we are dead?"

These thoughts troubled them deeply and on many long winter evenings they sat in the flickering firelight, imaging how different life might be if they had a child.

One night the woman had a strange dream, in which she saw a sled pulled by three dogs, one brown, one white and one black, draw up outside her door. The driver leaned from his seat and beckoned her, "Come<" he said. "Sit here by me. I will take you on a journey."

Wondering and fearful, the woman did as she was told. No sooner had she seated herself than the driver cracked his whip and the sled rose high into the air. Through the night black sky they flew, faster and faster, past stars sparkling like frost. The woman was no longer afraid for she knew that this must be Igaluk, the Moon Spirit, who often comes to comfort those in distress.Suddenly the sled stopped and the panting dogs lay down to rest. On all sides as far as she could see, lay a great plain of smooth ice, the glittering expanse broken only by one small tree.

Igaluk pointed and said, "You who desire a child look at that tree over there. Make a doll from it's trunk and you will find happiness."

Before she could learn more the woman awoke. So vivid as her dream that she at once roused her husband. She told him what she had seen and begged him to find the tree.

The man rubbed the sleep from his eyes. "What would be the point?" he grumbled.

"It would only be a doll, not a real child." But the woman persisted and finally, for the sake of peace, the man shouldered his ax and set out to look for the tree.

At the edge of the village where the snow lay thick and untrodden, he saw a bright path stretching far into the distance. It was now full day, yet the path shone like moonlight. and the man knew that this was the direction which he must take.

For many hours he journeyed along the path of light until at last, on the horizon, he saw something shinning very brightly. As he came nearer he saw that it was the tree of which his wife had spoken. The man cut it down with his axe and carried it home.

That evening he carved the figure of a small bot from some of the wood, his wife made a little suit of seal skin and when the doll was finished, she dressed it and set it in the place of honor on the bench opposite the door. From the remaining wood the man carved a set of toy dishes and some tiny weapons, a spear and a knife, tipped with bone. His wife filled the dishes with food and water and set them before the doll.

before going to bed, the couple sat and gazed at the doll. Although it was no more than six inches high, it was very life like, with eyes made from tiny chips of ivory.

"I can not think of why w have gone to all this trouble," said the man gloomily. "We are no better off than before."

"Perhaps not," replied his wife. "but at least it will give us some amusement and something to talk about."
during the night the woman awoke suddenly. Close at hand she heard several small whistles. She shook her husband and said, "Did you hear that? It was the doll !"

They jumped up and by the glow of their hastily lit lamp, they saw that the doll had eaten the food and drank the water. They saw it breathe and it's eyes move. The woman picked it up in her arms and hugged it.

They played with the doll for some time until it grew sleepy. Then they carefully returned it to the bench and went back to bed, delighted with their new toy.

In the morning however, when they awoke, the doll was gone. Rushing outside, they saw it's tiny footprints leading away from the village. They followed as fast as they could, but at the edge of the village the tracks stopped and there was no trace of the doll. Sadly the couple returned home.

Although they did not know it, the doll was traveling along the path of light which the man had taken the day before. On and on it went until it came to the eastern edge of day where the sky comes down to meet the earth and walls in light.

Looking up, the doll saw a hole in the sky wall. covered over with a piece of skin. The cover was bulging inwards, as if there were some powerful force on the other side. The doll was curious and, drawing it's knife, it slashed the cords holding the cover in place and pulled it aside. At once a great wind rushed in, carrying birds and animals with it. The doll peered through the hoe and saw the Sky Land on the other side, looking just like earth with mountains, trees and rivers.

When the doll felt the wind had blown long enough, it drew the skin cover back over the hole, saying sternly. "Wind, sometimes blow hard, sometimes soft, and sometimes not at all." Then the doll went on it's way.

When it came to the south, it saw another piece of skin covering an opening in the sky wall and bulging as before. Again the doll drew it's knife and this time warmer wind blew in, bringing more animals, trees and bushes. After a time the doll close up the opening with the same wards as before and passed on towards the west.

There it found yet another opening like the others, but this time, as soon as the cords were cut, the wind blew in a heavy rainstorm with waves and spray from the great ocean on the other side.

The doll hastened to cover up the hole and instructed this wind as it had the others.

When it came to the north, the cold was so intense that it hesitated for some time before it dared to open the hole in the sky there. When it finally did so, a fierce blast whistled in, with great masses of snow and ice, so that the doll was at once frozen to the core and he closed that opening very quickly indeed.

Admonishing the the wind as before, the doll now turned it's steps inwards away from the sky wall and traveled on until it came to the very Centrex of the earth's plain. There it saw the sky arching overhead like a huge tent, supported on a framework of tall slender poles. Satisfied that it had now traveled the whole world over, the doll decided to return to the village from which it started.

His foster-parents greeted it with great joy, for they feared that it had gone forever. The doll told them and all the people of the village about it's travels and how it had let the winds into the world. Everyone was pleased for with the wind came good hunting. The winds brought the birds of the air and the land animals, and they stirred up the sea currents so that seals and walrus could be found all along the coast.

Because it had brought good fortune as the Moon Spirit had predicted, the doll was honored in a special festival afterwards. Shamen made dolls like it to help them in their magic and parents made dolls for their children, knowing that they bring happiness to those who care for them.

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The White Faced Bear

In a tribal village there lived a mighty bear hunter. For three years, he had been constantly successful in killing so many that his friend tried to persuade him to stop hunting.

"If you insist on hunting one more bear, you will come across a huge bear who might kill you," he said. The hunter ignored his friend's advice and replied, "I will attack every bear I come across."

A few days later the hunter started out and saw a bear with two cubs. He decided this was not the huge bear he had been worried about, so he attacked the mother bear, and after some difficulty killed her. The cubs ran away. After the hunter dragged the bear home for his tribe, his friend continued to urge him to give up the bear hunt, but without success.

On another hunt after a few days on the trail, the hunter met a stranger who informed him that near his village were a great many bears. "Every year many are killed by our hunters, but always there is an invincible one that has destroyed many of our hunters. Each time he kills a man, the bear tears him apart, examines him carefully as if searching for a special body mark. He is different because his feet and head are white."

They parted, and the hunter started out to look for that hunting ground. On his way, he stopped near a fish creek looking for game, but after a long night none appeared. Next morning he moved onward and came to a high bluff, below it he saw many bears on the tundra. He waited until some separated and looked over the remainder.

Among those he saw the white faced bear with white feet and concluded that this must be the ferocious, huge bear he sought. First he would keep an eye on it and wait for a favorable opportunity to kill it.

Now it seems that at one time, the white faced bear was a human being and a very successful bear hunter, too successful for his own good. His friends were envious, and plotted to kill him. So they went to a medicine man deep in the woods, and begged him to transform the successful hunter into a beast.

"Shoot a bear, skin it and place the skin under the pillow of your successful hunter," advised the shaman.

After the bear skin had been prepared, the shaman and his friends quietly went to the man's hut and placed the skin under the man's pillow. They hid themselves to see what would happen when the man went to bed. Upon waking the found that he had become a huge bear with a white face and white feet.

"The white marks will show you which bear he is," said the shaman, who disappeared into the woods.

Now our bear hunter still sat at the edge of the bluff. Toward evening he saw the bears begin to leave, all except the white faced bear. He was the last to get up, and he shook himself three times and acted as if he was deeply enraged. He moved toward the bluff where the hunter sat perfectly still. But the bear approached. and when he was almost face to face, he asked, "What are you doing here?"

"I came out to hunt," replied the hunter.

Is it not enough that you have killed all of my family, and recently killed my wife, and now you want to take my life? If you had injured my children the other day, I would now tear you to pieces. I will, however, spare your life this time if you promise that you will never hunt bears again. All the bears you saw today are my children and of my brother. Should I ever see you hunting bear, I will tear you apart."

Relieved to get away so easily, the hunter headed homeward. His friend met him and inquired about the white faced bear, and when told what had happened, he urged the hunter to give up hunting. A whole week passed before the hunter set forth again, taking along six hunting friends.

For two days they hunted without luck, then came to the fish creek where they camped overnight. Next morning their leader took the six to the edge of the bluff where they looked down at the tundra and seen many bears. But they could not see the white faced bear and, encouraged, followed their leader toward the animals.

"Look at that strange looking beast with white paws and a white!" exclaimed one man.

The hunter leader caught sight of the special bear and ordered his followers to retreat at once. So they went around another mountain where they saw many bears. They killed seven, one for each man.

Loaded with their spoil they took the homeward trail, but a short distance behind them they heard a commotion. They saw the white faced bear rapidly approaching them. The hunter aimed, but his bowstring broke. The others shot and missed. The white faced bear spoke up and said, "Why do you shoot at me? I never harm you. Your leader killed my wife and nearly all my family. I warned him if I found him hunting again, I would tear him apart. And this I shall do now, piece by piece. The rest of you can go. I'll not harm you because you have not harmed me."

Hurriedly, as fast as possible, the six men fled. The white faced bear turned to the bear hunter.

I had you in my power once and I let you go on your promise not to hunt bear again. Now you are back at it and brought more bear hunters along.

This time I will do to you as you have done to mine."

The hunter pleaded to be allowed to live one more night so he could go home. At first the bear refused outright. The white faced bear then relented, and would even spear his life entirely, if the hunter would tell him who had transformed him from a man into a beast. The hunter agreed to meet him the next night and go to the home of the shaman.When the bear hunter reached home and found his six companions talking excitedly about the day's experience, they were surprised to see the hunter leader alive.

The hunter told them about his plan to meet the white faced bear at the home of the shaman the next evening and asked the six to go with him. They refused and tried to dissuade their leader. But the bear hunter kept his word and met the white faced bear at the appointed place. A light shone from every hut except that of the shaman.

"This is the place," said the man.

I will remain here." ordered the bear. "You go inside and tell him there is a man outside wishing to speak with him."

The man advanced and found the skin door tied, so he reported to the bear that the shaman must be out. The bear ordered him back to cut the door, then walk in. Upon entering, the man heard someone call, "Who dares come into my lodge?"

"It is I," said the bear hunter.

"What do you wish?"

"There is a man outside who wishes to speak to you."

Had the shaman not been so sleepy, he might have been suspicious. Under the circumstances, his mind was not clear and he fell into the trap.

When the shaman came near the white faced bear, the old man became frightened and was ready to run away. But the bear blocked his way and said, " For years you have tortured me made my life a burden in this condition. I demand you give me back my human form immediately, otherwise I shall tear you to pieces."

The shaman promised to do so if the bear would follow him into his hut. before going in, the white faced bear said to the hunter, Meet me here when I come out."

All night the shaman worked hard with the white faced bear, and by the next morning succeeded in pulling off the bear skin, and a human form appeared. The shaman asked to keep the white faced bear's skin, but the man kept the white face and the white claws, which he cut off at once, giving the rest of the skin to the shaman.

"If you ever try to transform a man into a beast again, I will be back and kill you dead" said the man.

The next day when the bear man met the bear hunter he said, I caution you against ever going out to hunt bear. You may even hear people say I have become a bear again, and they will hunt me. Don't join them. If I find you in their company, I will kill you dead."

For about four weeks the hunter remained home with every intention of keeping his promise to the transformed man. But one day two young men from the neighboring tribal village came to beg his assistance. They asked his help to kill a ferocious bear with a white face and four white feet.

Of course the hunter knew the bear they feared, but decided to disguise himself and go help them. They gathered all of the village warriors and set out to find the white faced bear. The bear saw them coming. he rose and shook himself three times, giving the impression of great anger, which frightened the warriors. Their chief said, "We are in great danger, so we must stand and fight."

Madly, the white faced bear jumped, landed in front of the hunter and tore him to pieces. Then it pawed a hole in the ground and covered up the parts.

The terrified warriors tried to escape, but the white faced bear chased them back to their village, tearing them apart, killing all of them, including the old shaman. Finished, the white faced bear turned back into the woods to rest undisturbed forever.

 

 

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Anishinabe Indian Lore:

 

The Man And The Ravens

There once was a man who enjoyed watching the black ravens fly around and play. He enjoyed them so much he would climb trees just to be closer to them. For many months the ravens ignored the man, but after awhile one of the ravens flew from a nearby tree and landed directly next to the man.

In utter amazement, the bird spoke to the man and asked, "You have been watching us for a long time. You have tried to get close to us. Why do you do this?The man replied, "I mean no harm. I have become enchanted with you and all your relatives. I enjoy the play, the squawking, and wish I could learn your language so I could understand more about you."

The Raven responded, "We are honored that you want to know us, as long as you do not cause harm, we will teach you our language."

For many months the ravens taught the man all about the language and how the ravens lived from day to day. The man became so educated that he knew everything there was to know about the ravens. Many of the ravens saw the man and accepted him as a friend.

One day, an older raven was flying far over the man, dropped a walnut perfectly on the man's head. It was done on purpose and all the ravens almost fell off their branches laughing. One raven was flying and was laughing so hard he had to crash land right in front of the man.

The man was hurt by being made fun of, so he asked the raven in front of him. "Why are you all picking on me?"

The raven stopped laughing and became very serious. "We thought you understood us, but apparently you don't. If you did you would know that we are not mocking you... well maybe a bit, but it is done in our way of having fun. We are playing with you and that is all. It is not to be taken seriously. You should know better."

The man took sometime to understand this and over some time a few more practical jokes were played on the man and he turned and pulled a few "good ones" on the ravens.

Then another event occurred. A young raven swooped out of the sky and pecked the man on the head. Then another young raven swooped and did the same thing. The man ran across the field and into the woods but the ravens kept chasing him and very skillfully they flew at high speeds through the woods tormenting the man. Finally the two ravens stopped and started to yell mean words, fighting words at the man.

Again the man did not understand, but he knew the two ravens were very mad at him, so he decided to leave the ravens be. The man went away for many months.

As he did his duties in his tribal village, he told all the people about his adventures and what he had learned about the ravens. Some listened with intent, others just thought the man was a fool to study the ravens so. The villagers gave the man the name "Black Feather" because of his close relationship to the birds, but the man objected and said, "I am no longer close to the Raven people."

From above there was a squawking sound of a single raven. Some of the people looked up and were surprised that they could understand the raven, others just looked around because they could hear nothing but squawking. The raven was speaking to the man and said, "It is true you are closer to us than any Anishinabe (Human) has ever come. You are close, but you still don't understand us fully. I invite you to return to us, many miss you."

Black Feather started to follow the raven but then stopped at the edge of the village. He looked around to make sure no other Anishinabe could hear then asked the raven, "Why do you as me back when two ravens were fighting with me and were mean?"
The raven landed at Black Feathers feet and said, "See how little you understand us, The two ravens did not fight with you because you are Anishinabe, it is because they accept you as a member of the Raven people. You should know we fight among ourselves too. It is part of our way of life. Instead of sulking and leaving you should have fought back."

Black Feather said, "There is much about ravens I don't understand, Maybe we are to different to ever understand each other. I should stop and return to my people in the village."The raven again shook his head and told Black Feather, "That is your choice, but again I tell you that you have come closer to us Raven people than any other Anishinabe. Would you throw this all away just because you can't understand us yet?"

Black feather responded, "It's useless, how can I ever understand you, I can't even fly!"

A thousand bursts of laughter was heard from all the surrounding trees and Black Feather knew that all the Raven people were there, hiding and listening.
"Of course you can't fly. You are Anishinabe and we are Ravens. But we accept you as one of us. We play with you, we fight with you and we love you and want you back. We also recommend you don't try to fly in order to be like us, because then, you would not be Anishinabe nor a raven but something else. We like you as an Anishinabe that understands us as Ravens. Join us or not the decision is yours."

Black feather returned to the Anishinabe village and bid everyone farewell because he had decided to live with the Raven people. After all the farewells and such he started to leave the village. All the Anihinabe people were there to see him off, and high over head was a thousand ravens.

Then from high above one of the older ravens dropped a walnut shell and again with remarkable aim, clunked Black feather right on the head. All the ravens started laughing hard and all the Anishinabe were laughing too.

Black Feather laughed and looked up at the old raven and said, "Good one."

 

 

 

 

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Apache Indian Lore:

 

Apache Creation Story

 

In the beginning nothing existed--no earth, no sky, no sun, no moon, only darkness was everywhere.

Suddenly from the darkness emerged a thin disc, one side yellow and the other side white, appearing suspended in midair. Within the disc sat a small bearded man, Creator, the One Who Lives Above. As if waking from a long nap, he rubbed his eyes and face with both hands.

When he looked into the endless darkness, light appeared above. He looked down and it became a sea of light. To the east, he created yellow streaks of dawn. To the west, tints of many colors appeared everywhere. There were also clouds of different colors.

Creator wiped his sweating face and rubbed his hands together, thrusting them downward. Behold! A shining cloud upon which sat a little girl.

"Stand up and tell me where are you going," said Creator. But she did not reply. He rubbed his eyes again and offered his right hand to the Girl-Without-Parents.

"Where did you come from?" she asked, grasping his hand.

"From the east where it is now light," he replied, stepping upon her cloud.

"Where is the earth?" she asked.

"Where is the sky?" he asked, and sang, "I am thinking, thinking, thinking what I shall create next." He sang four times, which was the magic number.

Creator brushed his face with his hands, rubbed them together, then flung them wide open! Before them stood Sun-God. Again Creator rubbed his sweaty brow and from his hands dropped Small- Boy.

All four gods sat in deep thought upon the small cloud.

"What shall we make next?" asked Creator. "This cloud is much too small for us to live upon."

Then he created Tarantula, Big Dipper, Wind, Lightning-Maker, and some western clouds in which to house Lightning-Rumbler, which he just finished.

Creator sang, "Let us make earth. I am thinking of the earth, earth, earth; I am thinking of the earth," he sang four times.

All four gods shook hands. In doing so, their sweat mixed together and Creator rubbed his palms, from which fell a small round, brown ball, not much larger than a bean.

Creator kicked it, and it expanded. Girl-Without-Parents kicked the ball, and it enlarged more. Sun-God and Small-Boy took turns giving it hard kicks, and each time the ball expanded. Creator told Wind to go inside the ball and to blow it up.

Tarantula spun a black cord and, attaching it to the ball, crawled away fast to the east, pulling on the cord with all his strength. Tarantula repeated with a blue cord to the south, a yellow cord to the west, and a white cord to the north. With mighty pulls in each direction, the brown ball stretched to immeasurable size--it became the earth! No hills, mountains, or rivers were visible; only smooth, treeless, brown plains appeared.

Creator scratched his chest and rubbed his fingers together and there appeared Hummingbird.

"Fly north, south, east, and west and tell us what you see," said Creator.

"All is well," reported Hummingbird upon his return. "The earth is most beautiful, with water on the west side."

But the earth kept rolling and dancing up and down. So Creator made four giant posts--black, blue, yellow, and white to support the earth. Wind carried the four posts, placing them beneath the four cardinal points of the earth. The earth sat still.

Creator sang, "World is now made and now sits still," which he repeated four times.

Then he began a song about the sky. None existed, but he thought there should be one. After singing about it four times, twenty- eight people appeared to help make a sky above the earth. Creator chanted about making chiefs for the earth and sky.

He sent Lightning-Maker to encircle the world, and he returned with three uncouth creatures, two girls and a boy found in a turquoise shell. They had no eyes, ears, hair, mouths, noses, or teeth. They had arms and legs, but no fingers or toes.

Sun-God sent for Fly to come and build a sweat house. Girl- Without-Parents covered it with four heavy clouds. In front of the east doorway she placed a soft, red cloud for a foot-blanket to be used after the sweat.

Four stones were heated by the fire inside the sweat house. The three uncouth creatures were placed inside. The others sang songs of healing on the outside, until it was time for the sweat to be finished. Out came the three strangers who stood upon the magic red cloud-blanket. Creator then shook his hands toward them, giving each one fingers, toes, mouths, eyes, ears, noses and hair.

Creator named the boy, Sky-Boy, to be chief of the Sky-People. One girl he named Earth-Daughter, to take charge of the earth and its crops. The other girl he named Pollen-Girl, and gave her charge of health care for all Earth-People.

Since the earth was flat and barren, Creator thought it fun to create animals, birds, trees, and a hill. He sent Pigeon to see how the world looked. Four days later, he returned and reported, "All is beautiful around the world. But four days from now, the water on the other side of the earth will rise and cause a mighty flood."

Creator made a very tall pinion tree. Girl-Without-Parents covered the tree framework with pinion gum, creating a large, tight ball.

In four days, the flood occurred. Creator went up on a cloud, taking his twenty-eight helpers with him. Girl-Without-Parents put the others into the large, hollow ball, closing it tight at the top.

In twelve days, the water receded, leaving the float-ball high on a hilltop. The rushing floodwater changed the plains into mountains, hills, valleys, and rivers. Girl-Without-Parents led the gods out from the float-ball onto the new earth. She took them upon her cloud, drifting upward until they met Creator with his helpers, who had completed their work making the sky during the flood time on earth.

Together the two clouds descended to a valley below. There, Girl- Without-Parents gathered everyone together to listen to Creator.

"I am planning to leave you," he said. "I wish each of you to do your best toward making a perfect, happy world.

"You, Lightning-Rumbler, shall have charge of clouds and water.

"You, Sky-Boy, look after all Sky-People.

"You, Earth-Daughter, take charge of all crops and Earth-People.

"You, Pollen-Girl, care for their health and guide them.

"You, Girl-Without-Parents, I leave you in charge over all."

Creator then turned toward Girl-Without-Parents and together they rubbed their legs with their hands and quickly cast them forcefully downward. Immediately between them arose a great pile of wood, over which Creator waved a hand, creating fire.

Great billowy clouds of smoke at once drifted skyward. Into this cloud, Creator disappeared. The other gods followed him in other clouds of smoke, leaving the twenty-eight workers to people the earth.

Sun-God went east to live and travel with the Sun. Girl-Without- Parents departed westward to live on the far horizon. Small-Boy and Pollen-Girl made cloud homes in the south. Big Dipper can still be seen in the northern sky at night, a reliable guide to all.

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Death of the Great Elk

In the early days, animals and birds of monstrous size preyed upon the people; the giant Elk, the Eagle, and others devoured men, women, and children, until the gods were petitioned for relief.


A deliverer was sent to them in the person of Djo-na-a'-y-n, the son of the old woman who lives in the West and the second wife of the Sun. She divided her time between the Sun and the Waterfall, and by the latter bore a second son, named Ko-ba-tcis'-tci-ni, who remained with his mother while his brother went forth to battle with the enemies of mankind. In four days Djo-na-a'-y-n grew to manhood, then he asked his mother where the Elk lived.

She told him that the Elk was in a great desert far to the southward. She gave him arrows with which to kill the Elk.

In four steps he reached the distant desert where the Elk was lying. Djo-na-a'-y-n cautiously observed the position of the Elk from behind a hill. The Elk was lying on an open plain, where no trees or bushes were to be found that might serve to shelter Djo-na-a'-y-n from view while he approached. While he was looking at the Elk, with dried grass before his face, the Lizard, Mai-cu-i-ti-tce-tc, said to him, "What are you doing, my friend? "

Djo-na-a'-y-n explained his mission whereupon the Lizard suggested that he clothe himself in the garments of the Lizard, in which he could approach the Elk in safety.

Djo-na-a'-y-n tried four times before he succeeded in getting into the coat of the Lizard.

Next the Gopher, Mi-i-ni-li, came to him with the question, "What are you doing here, my friend?" When Djo-na-a'-y-n told the Gopher of his intention, the latter promised to aid him.

The Gopher thought it advisable to reconnoiter by burrowing his way underground to the Elk.

Djo-na-a'-y-n watched the progress of the Gopher as that animal threw out fresh heaps of earth on his way. At length the Gopher came to the surface underneath the Elk, whose giant heart was beating like a mighty hammer.

He then proceeded to gnaw the hair from about the heart of the Elk. "What are you doing?" said the Elk. "I am cutting a few hairs for my little ones, they are now lying on the bare ground," replied the Gopher, who continued until the magic coat of the Elk was all cut away from about the heart of the Elk.

Then he returned to Djo-na-a'-y-n, and told the latter to go through the hole which he had made and shoot the Elk. Four times the Son of the Sun tried to enter the hole before he succeeded. When he reached the Elk, he saw the great heart beating above him, and easily pierced it with his arrows; four times his bow was drawn before he turned to escape through the tunnel which the Gopher had been preparing for him.

This hole extended far to the eastward, but the Elk soon discovered it, and, thrusting his antler into it, followed in pursuit. The Elk plowed up the earth with such violence that the present mountains were formed, which extend from east to west.

The black spider closed the hole with a strong web, but the Elk broke through it and ran southward, forming the mountain chains which trend north and south. In the south the Elk was checked by the web of the blue spider, in the west by that of the yellow spider, while in the north the web of the many-colored spider resisted his attacks until he fell dying from exhaustion and wounds.

Djo-na-a'-y-n made a coat from the hide of the Elk, gave the front quarters to the Gopher, the hind quarters to the Lizard, and carried home the antlers. He found that the results of his adventures were not unknown to his mother, who had spent the time during his absence in singing, and watching a roll of cedar bark which sank into the earth or rose in the air as danger approached or receded from Djo-na-a'-y-n, her son.

Djo-na-a'-y-n next desired to kill the great Eagle, I-tsa. His mother directed him to seek the Eagle in the west.

In four strides he reached the home of the Eagle, an inaccessible rock, on which was the nest, containing two young eaglet. His ear told him to stand facing the east when the next morning the Eagle swooped down upon him and tried to carry him off. The talons of the Eagle failed to penetrate the hard elk-skin by which he was covered.

"Turn to the south," said the ear, and again the Eagle came, and was again unsuccessful. Djo-na-a'-y-n faced each of the four points in this manner, and again faced toward the east; whereupon the Eagle succeeded in fastening its talons in the lacing on the front of the coat of the supposed man, who was carried to the nest above and thrown down before the young eagles, with the invitation to pick his eyes out.

As they were about to do this, Djo-na-a'-y-n gave a warning hiss, at which the young ones cried, "He is living yet."

"Oh, no," replied the old Eagle; "that is only the rush of air from his body through the holes made by my talons." Without stopping to verify this, the Eagle flew away. Djo-na-a'-y-n threw some of the blood of the Elk which he had brought with him to the young ones, and asked them when their mother would return.

" In the afternoon when it rains," they answered.

When the mother Eagle came with the shower of rain in the afternoon, he stood in readiness with one of the Elk antlers in his hand. As the bird alighted with a man in her talons, Djo-na-a'-y-n struck her upon the back with the antler, killing her instantly. Going back to the nest, he asked the young eagles when their father returned.

"Our father comes home when the wind blows and brings rain just before sunset," they said. The male Eagle came at the appointed time, carrying a woman with a crying infant upon her back. Mother and babe were dropped from a height upon the rock and killed. With the second antler of the Elk, Djo-na-a'-y-n avenged their death, and ended the career of the eagles by striking the Eagle upon the back and killing him.

The wing of this eagle was of enormous size; the bones were as large as a man's arm; fragments of this wing are still preserved at Taos. Djo-na-a'-y-n struck the young eagles upon the head, saying, "You shall never grow any larger." Thus deprived of their strength and power to injure mankind, the eagles relinquished their sovereignty with the parting curse of rheumatism, which they bestowed upon the human race.

Djo-na-a'-y-n could discover no way by which he could descend from the rock, until at length he saw an old female Bat, Tca-na'-mi-n, on the plain below.

At first she pretended not to hear his calls for help; then she flew up with the inquiry, "How did you get here?"

Djo-na-a'-y-n told how he had killed the eagles. "I will give you all the feathers you may desire if you will help me to escape," concluded he.

The old Bat carried her basket, ilt-tsai--zs, by a slender spider's thread. He was afraid to trust himself in such a small basket suspended by a thread, but she reassured him, saying; "I have packed mountain sheep in this basket, and the strap has never broken. Do not look while we are descending ; keep your eyes shut as tight as you can."

He began to open his eyes once during the descent, but she warned him in time to avoid mishap. They went to the foot of the rock where the old Eagles lay. Djo-na-a'-y-n filled her basket with feathers, but told her not to go out on the plains, where there are many small birds.

Forgetting this admonition, she was soon among the small birds, who robbed the old Bat of all her feathers. This accounts for the plumage of the small bird klo'-kn, which somewhat resembles the color of the tail and wing feathers of the bald eagle.

The Bat returned four times for a supply of feathers, but the fifth time she asked to have her basket filled, Djo-na-a'-y-n was vexed. "You cannot take care of your feathers, so you shall never have any. This old skin on your basket is good enough for you."

"Very well," said the Bat, resignedly, "I deserve to lose them, for I never could take care of those feathers."




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Coyote Gets Rich Off The White Men

Once when Coyote was visiting various camps, he and Bobcat heard about a white man who was making some whiskey. They went together to the man's house and managed to steal some, and after they had run a short distance with it, they stopped to drink.
Then Coyote said,
"My cousin, I feel so good, I'd like to holler!"
"No, we're still close to those white men," Bobcat said.
"I won't holler loud, cousin," Coyote said.

They kept arguing and drinking. Finally Bobcat said,
"All right then, holler quietly."
Coyote intended to holler softly, but before he knew it he got carried away and was hollering as loud as he could.

Now, the white men heard the noise and headed right toward him. Bobcat had enough whiskey in him to feel good, but Coyote was really drunk.
When the white men surrounded them Bobcat got up and sailed over the nearest man with one jump. In a second jump he leaped over all the rest and got away.
So they arrested Coyote and took him in chains to the town jail.

Later on, Bobcat used to visit Coyote from time to time, and once they arrested Bobcat and had them both locked up for quite a while.

One day the two prisoners watched some white men breaking horses in front of the jail. There was one horse that no one could get close to, and Coyote boasted,
"I could saddle that horse right away."
The prison guard told the men what Coyote had said, and they decided to let him out and see what he could do.

Now Coyote knew horse power, and when he had used it with the horse, it wasn't wild any more. He got on and rode it around and then thought he would have some fun. The horse balked, and though he kicked it gently with his heel, it wouldn't move.
Coyote told the white people to put on a fancy saddle. They bought out a brand new one with taps and saddle bags and everything on it, just as he wanted. He put it on the animal, re mounted and kicked it, but gently, so it wouldn't move.

"This horse is thinking about a nice white bridle and bits and lines, all covered with silver," said Coyote.
Actually the horse was ready to go, but Coyote kept holding him in. The men brought a fine bridle and put it on the horse. Then Coyote dismounted the horse and said,
"I want you to fill the saddle bags with crackers and cheese; that's what the horse wants. Also, I have to wear a good white shirt and vest, and a big show hat, and a pair of white-handled pistols in a belt. That's what the horse likes. And good silver spurs: the horse wants these also."
They brought all the finery for Coyote and filled the saddle bags.

Now Coyote got on the horse. Ahead by the gate were some American soldiers. He kicked the horse hard and started for the soldiers at a gallop, making it look as if the horse were running away with him. The soldiers moved back, and he and the horse tore through the gate and disappeared.


Later Coyote sat down by a spring under a walnut tree, thinking about the soldiers that he knew were after him. He swept the ground clean under the tree and strung his money up on its branches.
Pretty soon the soldiers came along, and Coyote said,
"I'm going to tell you about this tree. Money grows on it and I want to sell it. Want to buy?"

The soldiers were interested, and Coyote told them,
"It takes a day for the money to grow and ripen. Today's crop is mine, but tomorrow it's all yours. I'll sell you this fine tree for all your pack mules."
Coyote was always thinking about eating, and he hoped the packs held food.

The soldiers agreed to the terms, and Coyote got a big rock and threw it against the trunk. Most of the money fell to the ground.
"See, it only ripens at noon," he said. "You have to hit it just at noon."
He whacked the tree again, and the rest of the money dropped out. Now it was all on the ground, and the white men helped him pick it up and put it in sacks. They turned all their pack mules over, and he started off.

Coyote traveled for the rest of the day and all night, until he was in another country.

Meanwhile the soldiers camped under the walnut tree waiting for noon. Then the officer told the soldiers to hit the tree, and they pounded it hard. When no money fell out, the officer ordered it chopped down, cut into lengths, and split up, in case the money was inside. No matter what they did, they couldn't find even five cents.

That night one of Coyote's mules got hungry and started to bray. Irritated at the noise, he killed every mule that brayed, until at last he had killed them all. So when he came to a white man's house, he bought a burro from him.

Now Coyote was always thinking about how he could swindle someone, and the burro gave him another idea. Returning to his old home in the mountain, he put a lot of money up the burro's rear end, then kicked the animal in the belly so that it expelled all the money. He tried it again, and it worked as before.
"This burro is going to make me lots of money," he thought.

Coyote put his money in the burro's rear end and started for town, where he went to the big man in charge.
"Look at this wonderful burro! His excrement is money, and it comes out of him every day."
Coyote always talked like a Chiricahua.
"Let's see him do it," the head man said.
"All right, see for yourself. The first money that comes out is mine, but after that it's all yours."
Coyote started kicking the burro in the belly, and his money fell out. He gathered it up.
"Now it's yours," he said. "Tomorrow at the same time, he'll do it again."
They paid him lots of money, and he went on his way.

On the following day when the time came, the white men brought the burro out and kicked him. He merely broke wind. They kicked him all day till evening, the said,
"We might just as well kill this burro and look inside him."
So they cut him open, but there wasn't a sign of money inside.

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Coyote Steals Sun's Tobacco

One day Slim Coyote started out to Sun's house, When he got there Sun was not home, but his wife was.

"Where is my cousin Sun?" he asked.

Sun wife said he had gone out and was not home yet.

Coyote saw Sun's tobacco bag hanging up on the side of the house. "I came to smoke and talk with my cousin," said Slim Coyote, "so give me a smoke while I'm waiting, He won't mind, he's my cousin."

She handed him the tobacco bag, and he used it to fill his own buckskin bag. Then quickly hid his bag and rolled a cigarette, so that he actually got away with a lot of Sun's tobacco without her noticing.

"Since my cousin has not come back yet, I guess I won't wait after all." Coyote told her, and started home

Soon Sun arrived. "Whose been here and gone again?" he asked, looking at his tobacco bag.

"Somebody who said he was your cousin," answered his wife. She told him what had happened, and Sun was very angry.

"I'll get that fellow' he said. He went out front where he had Black Wind horse tied, and saddled up and set off after Coyote, Black Wind horse could fly, and when he traveled he made a noise like lightening.

A light rain started to fall and covered up Coyote's tracks, but Sun could still follow the thief by the ashes from his cigarette.

It kept raining, and soon the tobacco Coyote stole started to grow. It was putting out leaves and flowers. At last it ripened and dried, and the wind scattered the seeds everywhere.

When Sun saw this, he gave up chasing Coyote and went home. When Coyote got back to the Apache camp where he was living, he kept his tobacco for himself.

The Apache held a council on how to get Coyote's tobacco away from him, and they decided to pretend to give him a wife.

"We are going to give you a wife," they told him.

Coyote said "You are fooling me!"

"No we are not," they said, "We are really going to give you a wife.They set up a new wickiup. for Coyote, dressed a young boy as a girl, and told the boy not to let Coyote touch him until just before dawn. They made a bed in the new wickiup, and Coyote felt so good that he gave them all of his tobacco.

Just about dusk the boy dressed as a girl went over and sat down beside Coyote in his new wickiup. Slim Coyote was so excited he could not stand up but just crawled around the ground, "Why don't you come to bed?" he said to his bride. "Let's hurry and go to bed." But

the boy sat there.

After a while, when Coyote was more and more impatient, the boy lay down by him but not close to him. "I want you to lie close," Coyote said, and tried to touch the boy.

But the boy said, "Don't!" and pushed Coyote's hand away, This kept up all night. until just before dawn. Coyote made a grab and caught hold of the boy's penis. He let go and jumped back.

"Get away from me, get back from me, your a boy not a girl!" Then Coyote got up and called the people. "You lied to me," You did not give me a wife at all. Give my tobacco back!"

But no matter how loudly he yelled, they would not do it. This is the way the people first got tobacco.

 







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The Destruction Of The Bear

An apache boy, while playing with his comrades, pretended to be a bear, and ran into a hole in the hillside. When he came out his feet and hands had been transformed into bear's paws A second time he entered the den, and his limbs were changed to the knees and elbows.

Four times he entered the den, and then came fourth the voracious cac-tlay-ae that devoured his former fellow beings.

one day the bear met a fox in the mountains. "I'm looking for a man to eat." said the bear.

"So am I" said the fox, "but your legs are so big and thick you can't run fast enough to catch them. You ought to allow me to trim down those posts a little, so you can run as swift as I."

bear consented to have the operation performed, and Fox not only cut the flesh from the legs of Bear, but also broke the bones with his knife, thus killing the dreaded man eater. Taking the leg bones of Bear with him, he went to the home of the bear family, and there found two other bears.

These monsters preyed upon the people, who were unable to kill them, as they left their hearts at home when off on their marauding expeditions.
Fox remained in hiding until the bears went away. When they ran among the Indians, Fox responded to the cries for assistance, not by flying to attack the bears, but by hasting to cut their hearts in two.

The bears were aware that their hearts had been tampered with, and rushed with all speed to rescue them, but fell dead just before they reached Fox.

Thus Fox destroyed one of the most dreaded of man's enemies of that primeval time.




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The Fox and the Kingfisher

As Fox went on his way he met Kingfisher, Kt-la'-i-le-ti, whom he accompanied to his home. Kingfisher said that he had no food to offer his visitor, so he would go and catch some fish for Fox.


He broke through six inches of ice on the river and caught two fish, which he cooked and set before his guest.

Fox was pleased with his entertainment, and invited the Kingfisher to return the call. In due time the Kingfisher came to the home of the Fox, who said, " I have no food to offer you;" then he went down to the river, thinking to secure fish in the same manner as the Kingfisher had done.

Fox leaped from the high bank, but instead of breaking through the ice he broke his head and killed himself. Kingfisher went to him, caught him up by the tail, and swung Fox around to the right four times, thereby restoring him to life. Kingfisher caught some fish, and they ate together.

"I am a medicine-man," said Kingfisher; "that is why I can do these things. You must never try to catch fish in that way again."

After the departure of Kingfisher, Fox paid a visit to the home of Prairie-dog, where he was cordially received. Prairie-dog put four sticks, each about a foot in length, in the ashes of the camp-fire; when these were removed, they proved to be four nicely roasted prairie-dogs, which were served for Fox's dinner.

Fox invited the Prairie-dog to return the visit, which in a short time the latter did. Fox placed four sticks in the fire to roast, but they were consumed by it, and instead of palatable food to set before his guest he had nothing but ashes. Prairie-dog said to Fox, " You must not attempt to do that. I am a medicine-man; that is why I can transform the wood to flesh." Prairie-dog then prepared a meal as he done before, and they dined.

Fox went to visit Buffalo, I-gn-da, who exclaimed, "What shall I do? I have no food to offer you. Buffalo was equal to the emergency, however; he shot an arrow upward, which struck in his own back as it returned. When he pulled this out, a kidney and the fat surrounding it came out also. This he cooked for Fox, and added a choice morsel from his own nose.

As usual, Fox extended an invitation to his host to return the visit. When Buffalo came to call upon Fox, the latter covered his head with weeds in imitation of the head of the Buffalo. Fox thought he could provide food for their dinner as the Buffalo had done, so fired an arrow into the air; but when it came close to him on its return flight, he became frightened and ran away.

Buffalo then furnished meat for their meal as on the previous occasion. "You must not try this," said he; "I am a medicine-man; that is why I have the power."

Some time afterward, as Fox was journeying along, he met an Elk, Tss, lying beside the trail. He was frightened when he saw the antler of the Elk moving, and jumped to avoid what seemed to be a falling tree.

"Sit down beside me," said the Elk. "Don't be afraid."

"The tree will fall on us," replied Fox.

"Oh, sit down; it won't fall. I have no food to offer you, but I will provide some." The Elk cut steaks from his own quarter, which the Fox ate, and before leaving Fox invited the Elk to return the visit.

When Elk came to see Fox, the latter tried unsuccessfully to cut flesh from his own meager flanks; then he drove sharpened sticks into his nose, and allowed the blood to run out upon the grass. This he tried in vain to transform into meat, and again he was indebted to his guest for a meal.

"I am a medicine-man ; that is why I can do this," said Elk.



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The Fox And The Mountain Lion

Fox could find nothing to eat for a long time, so that he grew weak and thin. While on a journey in search of food he met the Mountain Lion, who, taking pity upon his unhappy condition, said, "I will hunt for you, and you shall grow fat again."


The Fox agreed to this, and they went on together to a much frequented spring. Mountain Lion told Fox to keep watch while he slept; if a cloud of dust was to be seen arising from the approach of animals Fox was to waken him.

Fox presently beheld the dust caused by the approach of a drove of horses.

Fox wakened Mountain Lion, who said, "just observe how I catch horses." As one of the animals went down to the spring to drink, he sprang upon it, and fastened his fangs in its throat, clawing its legs and shoulders until it fell dying at the waters edge.

Mountain Lion brought the horse up to the rock, and laid it before the Fox. "Stay here, eat, drink, and grow fat," said he.

Fox thought he had learned how to kill horses, so when the Coyote came along he volunteered to secure one for him. Fox jumped upon the neck of the horse, as Mountain Lion had done, but became entangled in its mane and was killed.




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Fox and the Porcupine


As Fox was going along he met a Porcupine, Tson, which he overheard saying, "I shall search for pc'-ti, a stone knife, with which to cut up this meat."


"What are you saying?" asked Fox, springing out of the bushes.

"I said that I must hunt for pc'-ti for arrow-heads," replied Porcupine.

"That is not what you said."

"It was," insisted Porcupine.

" Where is that meat?" asked Fox, and then Porcupine admitted that he had killed a Buffalo.

Porcupine had commanded a Buffalo to carry him across a river. "Don't shake your head with me, or I shall fall," said he, as he sat between the animal's horns.

The Buffalo told him that, if he was afraid there, he had better crawl into his anus. In that safe retreat Porcupine was carried across the river.

He repaid the service by gnawing the vitals of the Buffalo until it fell dead near where the Fox had come upon him. Fox was not disposed to allow Porcupine to retain possession of the Buffalo.

"Come," said he, " whoever can jump over the Buffalo can have it. You try first."

Porcupine jumped, but only landed on the top of the carcass, over which Fox, of course, leaped with ease. "Now the Buffalo is mine. You can sit over there and see me cut it up."

After cutting up the meat, Fox hastened away to summon all the foxes to a feast. Porcupine carried the meat piece by piece into a treetop, so that the foxes, when they came dancing in joyful anticipation, found nothing.

From a safe position in the tree Porcupine told the foxes that he would throw them down some meat if they would lie down, close their eyes, and cover themselves with their blankets.

They were hungry, so they obeyed the instructions of the Porcupine, who, as soon as their eyes were closed, killed them by throwing down the sharpened ribs of the Buffalo.

One little fox at the end of the line had a ragged old blanket, through which he peeped in time to see and to dodge the rib hurled at him. This fox survived the massacre, and begged Porcupine to give him some meat.

The Porcupine gave him some small pieces at first, and then invited him to come up and eat his fill. The Fox accepted, and, when he could eat no more, asked where he could go to relieve himself.

The Porcupine directed him to the end of a branch, whence he easily shook the Fox, which fell to the ground and was killed, but sprang up alive again at the moment when the first tuft of hair was blown from the putrefying carcass by the wind.


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The Fox And The Rabbit

Fox one day met a Rabbit who was sewing a sack. "What do you intend to do with that sack?" asked he. "I am making this coat to protect myself from being killed by the hard hail which we are going to have today," replied Rabbit.


"My friend, you know how to make them; give me this coat and make another for yourself."

Rabbit agreed to this, and Fox put on the sack over his head. Rabbit then hung him on a limb and pelt ed him with stones, while Fox, thinking it was hail striking him, endured the punishment as long as he could, but finally fell nearly dead from the tree, and looked out, to see no signs of hail, but discovered the Rabbit running away.

Fox wished to avenge himself by killing Rabbit, and set off in pursuit of him.

When overtaken Rabbit was chewing soft gum with which to make spectacles. Fox's curiosity was stronger than his passion for revenge. "What are you making those for?" said he.

"It is going to be very hot, and I am making them to protect my eyes," answered Rabbit.

"Let me have this pair; you know how to make them and can make yourself another pair."

"Very well," said Rabbit, and he put the eye-shields on Fox, who could then see nothing, as the gum was soft and filled his eyes.

Rabbit set fire to the brush all around Fox, who was badly singed in running through it. The gum melted in the fire, and yet remains as the dark rings around his eyes. Fox again started on the trail of Rabbit, with the determination of eating him as soon as he saw him.

He found Rabbit sitting beside the opening of a beehive. "I am going to eat you," said Fox ; "you have tried to kill me."

"You must not kill me," replied Rabbit. "I am teaching these children," and he closed the opening of the hive, so that Fox could not see what was inside. Fox desired very much to see what was in the hive making such a noise. "If you wish to see, stay here and teach them while I rest. When it is dinner time, strike them with a club," said Rabbit, who then ran away.

Fox patiently awaited the dinner hour, and then struck the hive with such force that he broke into it. The bees poured out and stung him until he rolled in agony.

"When I see you again, I will kill you before you can say a word!" declared he, as he started after Rabbit again.

Fox tracked the Rabbit to a small hole in the fence around a field of water melons belonging to a Mexican. The Rabbit had entered to steal, and was angered at sight of the gum figure of a man which the owner of the field had placed beside the path.

"What do you desire from me?" he cried, as he struck at the figure with his forefoot, which stuck fast in the soft gum. He struck at the gum with every foot, and even his head was soon stuck in the gum.

Thus Fox found him. "What are you doing here?" he asked.

"They put me in here because I would not eat chicken for them," said Rabbit.

"I will take your place," said Fox ; "I know how to eat chicken."

The Mexican found him in the morning and skinned him, and then let him go, -- still on the trail of the Rabbit who had so frequently outwitted him.

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The Fox And The Wildcat

As soon as his life was restored, Fox went to the Buffalo head, and cut off the long pendent hair, i-yn-e-pi-ta-ga, beneath its under jaw.

Fox took this to a prairie-dog village near at hand, and told the inhabitants that it was the hair of a man, one of that race dreaded by the prairie-dogs because of its attacks upon them, which he had killed.

He easily persuaded the prairie-dogs to celebrate his victory with feasting and dancing. With a stone concealed in his hand, he killed all the prairie-dogs as they circled around in the dance.

Fox then placed them in a pit, and built a huge fire over them, leaving them to roast while he slept.

Nn-ko-jn, the Wildcat, came along, and stole all the roasted prairie-dogs while Fox slept, save one at the end of the pit, leaving the tails, which were pulled off.

Fox awoke after some time, and flew into a great rage when he found only the tails left; the solitary dog was thrown over his shoulder in his fit of passion. The gnawing of hunger soon induced him to search for the dog he had thrown away.

In the stream close by he thought he saw the roasted body; taking off his clothes, he swam for it, but could not grasp it. Again and again he tried, and finally dove for it until he bumped his nose on the stony bottom.

Tired out with his efforts, he laid down upon the bank to rest, and, as he glanced upward, saw the body of the prairie-dog lying among the branches which projected over the water. Fox recovered the coveted morsel, ate it, and set off on the trail of the Wildcat.

He found Wildcat asleep under a tree, around which he set a fire. With a few quick strokes he shortened the head, body, and tail of Wildcat, and then pulled out the large intestine and roasted it.

Fox then awakened Wildcat, and invited him to eat his (Wildcat's) flesh, but to be careful to save a small piece, and put it back in its place, for he would need it. Fox then left him.

Wildcat followed Fox, intent upon revenge. He found Fox asleep, but instead of shortening that animal's members he lengthened them; the ears were only straightened, but the head, body, and tail were elongated as we see them at the present day. The intestine scene was repeated with the Fox as victim.

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The Old Beggar

There was once an old Apache who went begging from camp to camp every evening. His wife tried to reform the old beggar by playing a trick upon him.


One night during his absence she fetched a bleached horse's pelvis into the tipi, and painted it so that it somewhat resembled a face.

The old man came home about midnight, and beheld, as he thought, the head of a monster glaring at him in the bright moonlight from the door of the lodge.

Twice the woman held up the pelvis, when he turned in terror-stricken flight, calling, "Help, help! Something has killed my woman. Bring spears, bring arrows!" With a spear he cautiously lifted the side of the tipi, but his wife threw out the bone at the back, and he could not discover the cause of the apparition.

The next night he went out to beg again. He found plenty of buffalo meat at one of the lodges, some of which was given him to carry home. There were several horses lying outside the lodge, and the old man mistook one of them for a log, and jumped upon its back. The frightened horse rose under him, and soon succeeded in bucking him off.

As the Indians came out of the tipi to investigate the cause of the stampede of the ponies, the old man said, "I told you long ago to break this horse, and now I must do it myself!" Thus avoiding, in some measure, their ridicule, he groped about until he found his meat again, and then hastened home.

The next morning he decided to move his camp. His family formed a large party, and he wished to precede them on the march. His sons were alarmed, and told him that the Cheyenne would kill and scalp him.

"Oh, no," said he, "nobody will attack a warrior like me," and he walked on ahead of the others.

His three sons painted their faces black and white, so that they were no longer recognizable, and then ran around in front of their father. As they ran toward him he shot all his arrows, but was too frightened to shoot straight.

The young men caught him; one ran his fingernail around his scalp, while another placed a fresh buffalo's heart on the old man's head. The blood from the heart ran down his face, and he thought he was scalp ed.

His sons allowed him to go back toward the party; on the way he came to a river, where he stooped to drink, and saw the reflected image of the raw flesh upon his head. He was then sure that he had been scalp ed, and sat down to die.

His sons made signs to him to cross the river and go back. Again frightened by their gestures, he ran until he reached the women, who all laughed at his story of being scalp ed by the Cheyenne.

The sons had explained the joke to their mother, and when the old man appealed to his wife for sympathy she only laughed at him, as he sat and shook with fear before her. At last they pulled off the strange head-covering, and a fresh burst of ridicule of the "brave warrior" followed.

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The Two Blind Old Women

Two old women were once cooking a pot of mush which two mischievous boys were trying to steal.

Both were blind, so one sat on each side of the fire.

They kept their sticks waving back and forth above the pot, to prevent any one from taking advantage of their blindness and taking the vessel or its contents.

The boys found an empty pot, which they substituted for the one on the fire. Finding that the pot now had an empty ring when struck by their sticks, the old women concluded that the water had boiled away, and the mush must be sufficiently cooked.

"Let us smoke while it cools," said one.

"Very well," said the other, and they began to smoke alternately the single pipe in their possession. As they smoked they kept the sticks waving to and fro above the empty vessel.

The boys took the pipe from the hand of one old woman as she was passing it to the other.

"You are smoking all the time," said the second woman.

"I gave you the pipe long ago," said the first.

"You did not," said the second. Just then the boys struck the first woman in the mouth, and she, thinking it was the other woman, struck her companion, who, of course, retaliated, and they proceeded to belabor one another with their staves.

When they were tired of fighting they went to eat their mush; each thought the other had eaten it, which set them to fighting again.

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Why The Bat Hangs Upside Down

Once, long ago, Coyote thought he would take a wife, but did not know whom to choose. "Why not take the wife of Hawk Chief?" Bat said, for Hawk Chief was missing, and had not been seen for many days

But Hawk Chief returned and became angry with Bat for giving such ill-considered advice. He picked Bat up and slung him with full force into a juniper bush.

Bat hung upside down in the bush, caught by his long, pointy-toed moccasins. He twisted and he turned, but however much he struggled, he could not get free.

And from that time on bats hang upside down - even when they sleep.

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Origin Of The Animals

When Apaches emerged from the underworld, they traveled southward for four days. They had no other food than two kinds of seeds, which they ground between two stones.

Near where they camped on the fourth night, one tepee stood apart from the others.

While the owner and his wife were absent for a short time, A raven brought a quiver of arrows and a bow, hanging them on the lodge pole. When the children came out of the lodge, they took down the quiver and found some meat inside.

They ate it and instantly became fat.

Upon her return, the mother noticed grease on the hands and faces of her children, who told her what had happened. The woman hurried to tell her husband the tale.

All the tribe marveled at the wonderful food that made the children so fat. How they hoped the raven might soon return with more of his food.

When the raven discovered that his meat had been stolen, he flew eastward to his mountain home beyond the normal range of man. A bat followed raven and later informed the Apache where raven lived, that night the Apache Chief called a council meeting. They decided to send a delegation to try to obtain some of ravens' special kind of meat

In four days the Apache delegation reached the camp of the ravens, but could not obtain the information they desired. They discovered, however a great circle of ashes where the ravens ate their meals. The Apache decided to spy on the ravens. That night the Medicine Man changed an Apache boy into a puppy to spy from a nearby bush. The main delegation broke camp and started homeward, leaving the puppy behind.

Next morning the ravens examined the abandoned camp of the Apaches.

One of the young ravens found the puppy and was pleased, he asked for permission to keep it under his blanket. Toward sunset, the puppy peeked out and saw an old raven brush aside some ashes from the fireplace. he then removed a large flat stone. Beneath was an opening through which the old raven disappeared. When he returned he led a buffalo, which was killed and eaten by the ravens.

for four days the puppy spied on the ravens, and each evening a buffalo was brought up from the depths and devoured. Now that he was certain where the ravens obtained their good food, the puppy resumed his normal shape.

Early on the fifth morning, with a white feather in one hand and a black one in the other, he descended through the opening beneath the fireplace.

In the underworld he saw four buffalo and placed the white feather in the mouth of the nearest one.

He commanded it to follow him. But the first buffalo told him to tale the feather to the last buffalo. This he did, but the fourth buffalo sent him again to the first one, Into whose mouth the boy thrust the white feather.

"You are now the king of the animal," declared the boy.

Upon returning to the above world, the boy was followed by all the animals present upon the earth at the time. As the large heard passed through the opening, one of the ravens awoke, hurrying to close the lid. Upon seeing that all the animals willing followed the Apache boy, the raven exclaimed. "When you kill any of the animals, remember to save the eyes for me."

For four days the boy followed the tracks of the Apache and overtook them with his giant herd of animals. Soon they all returned to camp, Where the Chief slew the first buffalo for a feast that followed. The boy remembered and saved the eyes for the ravens.

One old grandmother who lived in a brush lodge was annoyed with one of the deer that ate some of her lodge covering. Snatching a stick from the fire, she struck the deers' nose and the white ash stuck there leaving a white mark that can still be seen on the descendants of that deer.

"Hereafter, you shall avoid mankind," she pronounced. "Your nose will tell you when you are to close to them."Thus ended the short period of harmony between man and animals. Each day animals wandered father from the tribes. Apaches prayed that the animals would return so they could enjoy the good meat again. It is mostly at night when deer appear, but not to close, because the old grandmother told them to be guided by their noses.

Apaches developed skills in using bows and arrows to hunt the good animal meat they liked so much, especially the buffalo.

 

 

 

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The Boy And The Rattlesnake

Once there was a boy who was very soft-hearted. He had reached an age that it was time for him to seek his vision. So he went to the elders and they instructed him to do so appropriately.

He took many days to prepare for his journey. At the end of each day he sought of the wisdom of the elders. They gave him their approval and he left the next morning.

His journey was to a high plateau far above the desert. He walked for hours, stopping to look at the animals, birds, and plant people.

Just as he reached the ridge and started to climb, he saw a rattlesnake beside the trail. There had been an early frost the night before and the snake had been caught out in it. The snake was stiff with the cold. The boy stopped to look at it, feeling sorry for the snake. Then a strange and wonderful thing happened. The snake opened up its mouth and spoke to him.

"Help me," the rattlesnake said in a pitiful voice. "Please help me. Pick me up, warm me or I will die."

The young boy stood very still. He thought about all that the elders had told him. "Did they not tell him to beware of the rattlesnake?", he reminded himself. Yes, he should move away very slowly, when the timing was right.

The rattlesnake cried out again, "Please help me, I'm dying in this cold."

"No!" said the young boy. "If I pick you up you will bite me." " The elders have warned me about you."

The snake then hissed, " I will not bite you. I promise. If you just warm me up, I truly promise I will not bite you." said the snake in his most convincing way.

The boy took pity on the snake. After all, the snake did promise that he wouldn't be harmed. So he picked it up. He held the snake close to him so it could be warmed by his body. The snake grew warmer and warmer, less stiff with each minute. Then suddenly, it twisted in the boys hands and --- BAMMM!!!! It bit the boy on his arm. The boy dropped the snake and grasped his arm.

"You bit me! Why did you bite me?" cried the boy. "You said you would not bite me if I picked you up."

"That is so," said the rattlesnake, " but when you picked me up, you knew what I was."

And so you can see, how this can apply today. We all know what tobacco, alcohol, and drugs can do. So let us all be more wise than the boy and the snake, and not pick up the things that can harm and even kill us.

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The Jicarilla Genesis

In the beginning the earth was covered with water, and all living things were below in the underworld. Then people could talk, the animals could talk, the trees could talk, and the rocks could talk.

It was dark in the underworld, and eagle plumes were used for torches. The people and the animals that go about by day wanted more light, but the night animals - the bear, the panther, and the owl - wanted darkness.

After a long argument they agreed to play the thimble-and-button game, and if the day animals won there would be light, but if the night animals won it would always be dark.

The game began. The magpie and the quail, who love the light and have sharp eyes, watched until they could see the button through the thin wood of the hollow stick that served as a thimble. This told the people where the button was, and in the first round, the people won.

The morning star came out and the black bear ran and hid in the darkness.
They played again, and the people won. It grew bright in the east and the brown bear ran and hid in a dark place.
They played a third time, and the people won. It grew brighter in the east and the mountain lion slunk away into the darkness.
They played a fourth time, and again the people won. The sun came up in the east, and it was day, and the owl flew away and hid.

Even though it was light now, the people still didn't see much because they were underground.
But the sun was high enough to look through a hole and discover that there was another world - this earth. He told the people, and they all wanted to go up there.
They built four mounds to help them reach the upper world.
In the east they mounded the soil and planted it with all kinds of fruits and berries that were colored black.
In the south they heaped up another mound and planted all kinds of fruits that were blue.
In the west they built a mound that they planted with yellow fruits.
In the north they planted the mound with fruits of variegated colors.

The mounds grew into mountains and the bushes blossomed, fruited, and produced ripened berries.
One day two girls climbed up to pick berries and gather flowers to tie in their hair.
Suddenly the mountains stopped growing. The people wondered, and they sent Tornado to learn the cause.
Tornado went everywhere and went into every corner, and at last he found the two girls and brought them back to their people.
But the mountains did not grow anymore, and this is why a boy stops growing when he goes with a woman for the first time. If he never did, he would continue to grow taller.

The mountains had stopped growing while their tops were still a long way from the upper world. So the people tried laying feathers crosswise to make a ladder, but the feathers broke under weight.
The people made a second ladder of larger feathers, but again they were too weak.
They made a third ladder of eagle feathers, but even these would not bear much weight.
Then a buffalo came and offered his right horn, and three others also contributed their right horns. The horns were strong and straight, and with them the people were able to climb up through the hole to the surface of the earth.
But the weight of all those humans bent the buffalo horns, which have been curved ever since.

Now the people fastened the sun and the moon with spider threads so that they could not get away, and sent them up into the sky to give light.

And since water covered the whole earth, four storms went to roll the waters away.
The black storm blew to the east and rolled up the waters into the eastern ocean.
The blue storm blew to the south and rolled up the waters in that direction.
The yellow storm rolled up the waters in the west, and the varicolored storm went to the north and rolled up the waters there.
So the tempests formed the four oceans in the east, the south, the west, and the north. Having rolled up the waters, the storms returned to where the people were waiting, grouped around the mouth of the hole.

The Polecat first went out, when the ground was still soft, and his legs sank in the black mud and have been black ever since.
They sent the Tornado to bring him back, because it wasn't time.
The badger went out, but he too sank in the mud and got black legs, and Tornado called him back.
Then the beaver went out, walking through the mud and swimming through the water, and at once began to build a dam to save the water still remaining in pools. When he did not return, Tornado found him and asked why he had not come back.
"Because I wanted to save the water for the people to drink," said the beaver.
"Good," said Tornado, and they went back together.

Again the people waited, until at last they sent out the gray crow to see if the time had come. The crow found the earth dry, and many dead frogs, fish, and reptiles lying on the ground. He began picking out their eyes and did not return until Tornado was sent after him.
The people were angry when they found he had been eating carrion, and they changed his color to black.

But now the earth was all dry, except for the four oceans and the lake in the center, where the beaver had dammed up the waters.
All the people came up. They traveled east until they arrived at the ocean; then they turned south until they came again to the ocean; then they went west to the ocean, and then they turned north. And as they went, each tribe stopped where it wanted to.

But the Jicarillas continued to circle around the hole where they had come up from the underworld. Three times they went around it, when the Ruler became displeased and asked them where they wished to stop.
They said,
"In the middle of the earth."
So he led them to a place very near Taos and left them, and there near the Taos Indians, the Jicarillas made their home.

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The Origin Of Curing Ceremonies

This his how ceremonies started among us for the curing of sick people.
Long, long ago, the earth was made. Then the One Who Made the Earth also planned for each person to have a piece of land that he could live on and call his own.
Our people were living in one such place, but they didn't like that particular spot. So the One Who Made the Earth told them to move to a new location, and when they did, they slept well, and liked it, and lived in a good way.
Then two men among them became sick and grew weaker and weaker day by day. The people didn't do anything for them because no one knew then about illnesses and how to cure them.
The One Who Made the Earth said, "Why don't you do something for those two men? Why don't you say some words over them?"
But the people had no knowledge of curing ceremonies. Four men among the people happened to be standing, one to the east, one to the south, one to the west, and one to the north. The One Who Made the Earth spoke to one of these men, telling him, "Everything on earth has power to cause its own kind of sickness, make its own trouble. There is a way to cure all these things."


Now this man understood that knowledge was available. Then those four stood there. On the first night, other one standing on the east side began to chant a set prayer all by himself. On the second night the one on the south started to drum and sing lightning songs. On the third night, the one on the west chanted a set prayer. On the fourth night, the one on the north began to drum and sing lightning songs.
They did not conceive this pattern in their own minds; it was bestowed upon them by the One Who Made the Earth. It was as if the knowledge was transmitted to them from outside.
Then the One Who Made the Earth said to these four, "Why don't you go to the two sick men and say some words over them and make them well?"
So those four went to where the two sick men were and worked over them, and they were cured.
From that time on, we had curing ceremonies and knowledge of the different kinds of sickness that may be caused by various things. That's the way all curing ceremonies started.

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Arapaho Indian Lore:

 

Splinter Foot Girl

It was in winter and a large party was on the war-path. Some of them became tired and went home, but seven continued on their way. Coming to a river, they made camp on account of one of them who was weary and nearly exhausted. They found that he was unable to go farther.

Then they made a good brush hut in order that they might winter there. From this place they went out and looked for buffalo and hunted them wherever they thought they might find them.


During the hunting one of them ran against a thorny plant and became unable to hunt for some time. His leg swelled very much in consequence of the wound, and finally suddenly opened. Then a child issued from the leg. The young men took from their own clothes what they could spare and used it for wrapping for the child.

They made a panther skin answer as a cradle. They passed the child around from one to the other, like people smoking a pipe. They were glad to have another person with them and they were very fond of the child.

While they lived there they killed very many elk and saved the teeth. From the skins they made a dress for the child, which was then old enough to run about. The dress was a girl's, entirely covered with elk teeth. They also made a belt for her. She was very beautiful. Her name was Foot Stuck Child.

A buffalo bull called Bone Bull heard that these young men had had a daughter born to them. As is the custom, he sent the magpie to go to these people to ask for the girl in marriage. The magpie came to the young men and told them what the Bone-bull wished; but he did not meet with any success.

The young men said, "We will not do it. We love our daughter. She is so young that it will not be well to let her go."

The magpie returned and told the Bone-bull what the young men had said. He advised the bull to get a certain small bird which was very clever and would perhaps persuade the young men to consent to the girl's marriage with him.

So the small bird was sent out by the bull. It reached the place where the people lived and lighted on the top of the brush house. In a gentle voice it said to the men, "I am sent by Bone Bull to ask for your daughter."

The young men still refused, giving the same answer as before. The bird flew back and told the bull of the result. The bull said to it, "Go back and tell them that I mean what I ask. I shall come myself later." It was known that the bull was very powerful and hard to overcome or escape from. The bird went again and fulfilled the bull's instruction, but again returned unsuccessfully.

It told the bull: "They are at last making preparations for the marriage. They are dressing the girl finely." But the bull did not believe it


Then, in order to free itself from the unpleasant task, the bird advised him to procure the services of some one who could do better than itself; some one that had a sweet juicy tongue. So the bull sent another bird, called "Fire Owner," which has red on its head and reddish wings. This bird took the message to the young men. Now at last they consented.

So the girl went to the bull and was received by him and lived with him for some time. She wore a painted buffalo robe. At certain times the bull got up in order to lead the herd to water. At such times he touched his wife, who, wearing her robe, was sitting in the same position as all the rest, as a sign for her to go too.

The young men were lonely and thought how they might recover their daughter. It was a year since she had left them. They sent out flies, but when the flies came near the bull he bellowed to drive them away. The flies were so much afraid of him that they did not approach him. Then the magpie was sent, and came and alighted at a distance; but when the bull saw him he said, "Go away! I do not want you about."

They sent the blackbird, which lit on his back and began to sing. But the bull said to it also: "Go away, I do not want you about."

The blackbird flew back to the men and said, " I can do nothing to help you to get your daughter back, but I will tell you of two animals that work unseen, and are very cunning: they are the mole and the badger. If you get their help you will surely recover the girl."

Then the young men got the mole and the badger, and they started at night, taking arrows with them. They went underground, the mole going ahead. The badger followed and made the hole larger. They came under the place where the girl was sitting and the mole emerged under her blanket. He gave her the arrows which he had brought and she stuck them into the ground and rested her robe on them and then the badger came under this too. The two animals said to her, "We have come to take you back." She said, " I am afraid," but they urged her to flee.

Finally she consented, and leaving her robe in the position in which she always sat, went back through the hole with the mole and the badger to the house of the young men.

When she arrived they started to flee. The girl had become tired, when they came to the stone and asked it to help them. The stone said, "I can do nothing for you, the bull is too powerful to contend with."

They rested by the side of the stone; then they continued on their way, one of them carrying the girl. But they went more slowly on account of her. They crossed a river, went through the timber, and on the prairie the girl walked again for a distance. In front of them they saw a lone immense cottonwood tree.

They said to it: "We are pursued by a powerful animal and come to you for help."

The tree told them, "Run around me four times," and they did this. The tree had seven large branches, the lowest of them high enough to be out of the reach of the buffalo, and at the top was a fork in which was a nest. They climbed the tree, each of the men sitting on one of the branches, and the girl getting into the nest. So they waited for the bull who would pursue them.

When the bull touched his wife in order to go to water, she did not move. He spoke to her angrily and touched her again. The third time he tried to hook her with his horn, but tossed the empty robe away. "They cannot escape me," he said.

He noticed the fresh ground which the badger had thrown up in order to close the hole. He hooked the ground and threw it to one side, and the other bulls got up and did the same, throwing the ground as if they were making a ditch and following the course of the underground passage until they came to the place where the people had lived. The camp was already broken up, but they followed the people's trail.

Coming to the stone, the bull asked, "Have you hidden the people or done anything to help them?"

The stone said: "I have not helped them for fear of you."

But the bull insisted: "Tell me where you hid them. I know that they reached you and are somewhere about."

"No, I did not hide them; they reached this place but went on," said the stone.

"Yes, you have hidden them; I can smell them and see their tracks about here."

"The girl rested here a short time; that is what you smell," said the stone.

Then the buffalo followed the trail again and crossed the river, the bull leading. One calf which was becoming very tired tried hard to keep up with the rest. It became exhausted at the lone cottonwood tree and stopped to rest. But the herd went on, not having seen the people in the tree. They went far on.

The girl was so tired that she had a slight hemorrhage. Then she spat down.

As the calf was resting in the shade below, the bloody spittle fell down before it. The calf smelled it, knew it, got up, and went after the rest of the buffalo. Coming near the herd, it cried out to the bull: "Stop! I have found a girl in the top of a tree. She is the one who is your wife."

Then the whole herd turned back to the tree.

When they reached it, the bull said: "We will surely get you."

The tree said: "You have four parts of strength. I give you a chance to do something to me."

Then the buffalo began to attack the tree; those with least strength began. They butted it until its thick bark was peeled off. Meanwhile the young men were shooting them from the tree.

The tree said: "Let some of them break their horns."

Then came the large bulls, who split the wood of the tree; but some stuck fast, and others broke their horns or lost the covering.

The bull said, "I will be the last one and will make the tree fall." At last he came on, charging against the tree from the southeast, striking it, and making a big gash. Then, coming from the southwest, he made a larger hole. Going to the northwest, he charged from there, and again cut deeper, but broke his right horn. Going then to the northeast, he charged the tree with his left horn and made a still larger hole. The fifth time he went straight east, intending to strike the tree in the center and break it down.

He pranced about, raising the dust; but the tree said to him: "You can do nothing. So come on quickly." This made him angry and he charged. The tree said: "This time you will stick fast," and he ran his left horn far into the middle of the wood and stuck fast. Then the tree told the young men to shoot him in the soft part of his neck and sides, for he could not get loose or injure them.

Then they shot him and killed him, so that he hung there. Then they cut him loose.

The tree told them to gather all the chips and pieces of wood that had been knocked off and cover the bull with them, and they did so. All the buffalo that had not been killed went away. The tree said to them: "Hereafter you will be overcome by human beings. You will have horns, but when they come to hunt you, you will be afraid. You will be killed and eaten by them and they will use your skins." Then the buffalo scattered over the land with half-broken, short horns.

After the people had descended from the tree, they went on their way. The magpie came to them as messenger sent by Merciless-man to ask the young men for their daughter in marriage. He was a round rock. The magpie knew what this rock had done and warned the men not to consent to the marriage.

He said, "Do not have anything to do with him, since he is not a good man. Your daughter is beautiful, and I do not like to see her married to the rock. He has married the prettiest girls he could hear of, obtaining them somehow. But his wives are crippled, one-armed, or one-legged, or much bruised. I will tell the rock to get the hummingbird for a messenger because that bird is swift and can escape him if he should pursue."

So the magpie returned and said that the young men refused the marriage. But the rock sent him back to say: "Tell them that the girl must marry me nevertheless." The magpie persuaded him to send the hummingbird as messenger instead of himself.

Then the hummingbird went to carry the message to the young men; but, on reaching them, told them instead: "He is merciless and not the right man to marry this girl. He has treated his wives very badly. You had better leave this place."

So he went back without having tried to help the rock. He told the rock that he had seen neither camp nor people.

"Yes you saw them," said the rock; "you are trying to help them instead of helping me. Therefore you try to pretend that you did not see them. Go back and tell them that I want the girl. If they refuse, say that I shall be there soon."

The hummingbird went again to the men and told them what the rock wished, and said: "He is powerful. Perhaps it is best if you let your daughter go. But there are two animals that can surely help you. They can bring her back before he injures her. They are the mole and the badger."

"Yes," they said, now having confidence in these animals.

So the hummingbird took the girl to the rock. He reached his tent, which was large and fine, but full of crippled wives. "I have your wife here," he said.

"Very well," said the rock, "let her come in. I am pleased that you brought her; she is pretty enough for me."

Soon after the hummingbird had left with the girl, the mole and the badger started underground and made their way to the rock's tent. In the morning the rock always went buzzing out through the top of the tent; in the evening he came back home in the same way. While he was away, the two animals arrived. The girl was sitting with both feet outstretched.

They said to her, "Remain sitting thus until your husband returns." Then they made a hole large enough for the rock to fall into and covered it lightly. In the evening the rock was heard coming. As he was entering above, the girl got up, and the rock dropped into the hole while

she ran out of the tent saying: "Let the hole be closed."

"Let the earth be covered again," said the mole and the badger. They heard the rock inside the earth, tossing about, buzzing, and angry. The girl returned to her fathers.

They traveled all night, fleeing. In the morning the rock overtook them. As they were going, they wished a canyon with steep cliffs to be behind them. The rock went down the precipice, and while he tried to climb up again, the others went on. It became night again and in the morning the rock was near them once more.

Then the girl said: "This time it shall happen. I am tired and weary from running, my fathers." She was carrying a ball, and, saying: "First for my father," she threw it up and as it came down kicked it upwards, and her father rose up. Then she did the same for the others until all had gone up. When she came to do it for herself the rock was near. She threw the ball, kicked it, and she too rose up.

She said, "We have passed through dangers on my account; I think this is the best place for us to go. It is a good place where we are. I shall provide the means of living for you." To the rock she said. "You shall remain where you overtook us. You shall not trouble people any longer, but be found wherever there are hills."

She and her fathers reached the sky in one place. They live in a tent covered with stars.

 

 

The Girl Enticed to the Sky

 

There was a camp circle. A party of women went out after some wood for the fire. One of them saw a porcupine near a cottonwood tree and informed her companions of the fact. The porcupine ran around the tree, finally climbing it, whereupon the woman tried to hit the animal, but he dodge from one side of the trunk to the other, for protection. At length one of the women started to climb the tree to catch the porcupine, but it ever stopped just beyond her reach. She even tried to reach it with a stick, but with each effort it went a little higher. "Well!" she said, "I am climbing to catch the porcupine, for I want those quills, and if necessary I will go to the top."

When porcupine had reached the top of the tree the woman was still climbing, although the cottonwood was dangerous and the branches were waving to and fro; but as she approached the top and was about to lay hands upon the porcupine, the tree suddenly lengthened, when the porcupine resumed his climbing. Looking down, she saw her friends looking up at her, and beckoning her to come down, but having passed under the influence of the porcupine and fearful for the great distance between herself and the ground, she continued to climb, until she became the meekest speck to those looking up from below, and with the porcupine she finally reached the sky.

The porcupine took the woman into the camp circle where his father and mother lived. The folks welcomed her arrival and furnished her with the very best kind of accommodations. The lodge was then put up for them to live in. The porcupine was very industrious and, of course, the old folks were well supplied with hides and food.

One day she decided to save all the sinew from the buffalo, at the same time doing work on buffalo robes and other things with it, in order to avoid all suspicion on the part of her husband and the old folks as to why she was saving the sinew. Thus she continued to save a portion of the sinew from each beef brought in by her husband, until she had a supply suitable for her purpose. One day her husband cautioned her that while in search of roots, wild turnips and other herbs, she should not dig and that, should she use the digging stick, she should not dig too deep, and that she should go home early when out for a walk. The husband was constantly bringing in beef and hide, in order that he might keep his wife at work at home all the time. But she was a good worker and soon finished what was required for them.

Seeing that she had done considerable work, one day she started out in search of hog potatoes, and carried with her the digging stick. She ran to a thick patch and kept digging away to fill her bag. She accidentally struck a hole, which surprised her very much, and so she stooped down and looked in and through the hole, seeing below, a green earth with a camp circle on it. After questioning herself and recognizing the camp circle below, she carefully covered the spot and marked it. She took the bag and went to her own tepee, giving the folks some of the hog potatoes. The old folks were pleased and ate the hog potatoes to satisfy their daughter-in-law. The husband returned home too, bring in beef and hides.

Early one morning the husband started off for more beef and hides, telling his wife to be careful about herself. After he was gone, she took the digging stick and the sinew she had to the place where she struck the hole. When she got to the hole, she sat down and began tying string, so as to make the sinew long enough to reach the bottom. She then opened the hole and laid the digging stick across the hole which she had dug, and tied one of the sinew strings in the center of this stick, and then also fastened herself to the end of the lariat. She gradually loosened the sinew lariat as she let herself down, finally finding herself suspended above the top of the tree which she had climbed, but not near enough so that she could possibly reach it.

When the husband missed her, he scolded the old people for not watching their daughter-in-law. He began to look for her in the direction in which she usually started off, but found no fresh tracks, though he kept traveling until he tracked her to the digging stick which was lying across the hole. The husband stooped down and looked into this hole and saw his wife suspended from this stick by means of sinew lariat or string. "Well, the only way to do is to see her touch bottom," said he. So he looked around and found a circular stone two or three inches thick, and brought it to the place. Again he continued, "I want this stone to light right on top of her head," and he dropped the stone carefully along the sinew string, and it struck the top of her head and broke her off and landed her safe on the ground. She took up the stone and went to the camp circle. This is the way the woman returned.

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The Lame Warrior
In the days before horses, a party of young Arapaho set off on foot one autumn morning in search of wild game in the western mountains. They carried heavy packs of food and spare moccasins, and one day as they were crossing the rocky bed of a shallow stream a young warrior felt a sudden sharp pain in his ankle. The ankle swelled and the pain grew worse until they pitched camp that night.

morning the warrior's ankle was swollen so badly that it was impossible for him to continue the journey with the others. His companions decided it was best to leave him. They cut young willows and tall grass to make a thatched shelter for him, and after the shelter was finished they collected a pile of dry wood so that he could keep a fire burning.

"When your ankle gets well," they told him, "don't try to follow us. Go back to our village, and await our return."

After several lonely days, the lame warrior tested his ankle, but it was still too painful to walk upon. And then one night a heavy snowstorm fell, virtually imprisoning him in the shelter. Because he had been unable to kill any wild game, his food supply was almost gone.

Late one afternoon he looked out and saw a large herd of buffalo rooting in the snow for grass quite close to his shelter. Reaching for his bow and arrow, he shot the fattest one and killed it. He then crawled out of the shelter to the buffalo, skinned it, and brought in the meat. After preparing a bed of coals, he placed a section of ribs in the fire for roasting.

Night had fallen by the time the ribs were cooked, and just as the lame warrior was reaching for a piece to eat, he heard footsteps crunching on the frozen snow. The steps came nearer and nearer to the closed flap of the shelter. "Who can that be?" he said to himself. "I am here alone and unable to run, but I shall defend myself if need be." He reached for his bow and arrow.

A moment later the flap opened and a skeleton clothed in a tanned robe stood there looking down at the lame warrior.

The robe was pinned tight at the neck so that only the skull was visible above and skeleton feet below. Frightened by this ghost, the warrior turned his eyes away from it.

"You must not be frightened of me," the skeleton said in a hoarse voice. "I have taken pity on you. Now you must take pity on me. Give me a piece of those roast ribs to eat, for I am very hungry."

Still very much alarmed by the presence of this unexpected visitor, the warrior offered a large piece of meat to an extended bony hand. He was astonished to see the skeleton chew the food with its bared teeth and swallow it.

"It was I who gave you the pain in your ankle," said the skeleton. "It was I who caused your ankle to swell so that you could not continue on the hunt. If you had gone on with your companions you would have been killed. The day they left you here, an enemy war party made a charge upon them, and they were all killed. I am the one who saved your life."

Again the skeleton's bony hand reached out, this time to rub the warrior's ankle. The pain and swelling vanished at once. "Now you can walk again," the ghost said. "Your enemies are all around, but if you will follow me I can lead you safely back to your village."

At dawn they left the shelter and started off across the snow, the skeleton leading the way. They walked through deep woods, along icy streams, and over high hills. Late in the afternoon the skeleton led the warrior up a steep ridge. When the warrior reached the summit, the ghost had vanished, but down in the valley below he could see the smokes of tepees in his Arapaho village.

 



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