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Lore of the Birds

Lore of the Birds

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Published by Joshua Allen
Texoje is a young Indian boy charged with going across a great valley and the river beyond on in order to be a liason to the new people that are there. Like the other strange new people they have encountered lately, these have strange and interesting abilities. Legend has it they can even fly...
Texoje is a young Indian boy charged with going across a great valley and the river beyond on in order to be a liason to the new people that are there. Like the other strange new people they have encountered lately, these have strange and interesting abilities. Legend has it they can even fly...

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Published by: Joshua Allen on Nov 01, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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10/31/2009

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THE LORE OF THE BIRDSby Joshua AllenThe leaves were dancing in the warm wind off the grassyplain that day, long, long ago off the banks of a big riverpeople would come to call "Mississippi." In a village of smallteepees, a boy named Texoje squeezed his eyes shut and borrowedcourage from his dead mother, Tse, to bear what the winds werebringing.When Texoje opened his eyes his teepee still stood, thesame color it had been the day his mother had died, thoughbefore she died its colors had changed with the seasons and themoon as she painted it with the decorations only she knew how to
 
make. Texoje looked up to his chief, Changing Sky, who wasstaring down at him.Texoje stood. Only the leather skin hanging from his beltcovered his nakedness."Will you do it, Texoje of Tse?" Changing Sky asked. "Visitthe New People?""I'll do it," Texoje said, if only to show Changing Sky hewas brave enough to say it. If only for the hope that his motherwas smiling at him."New People" was the name most of the village had settledon for the visitors. Supposedly, they lived across the ravine,over the plain and on the other side of the river. It had beendetermined the previous night at the sit-down with the men thatsomeone would be chosen to make this journey, crossing the riverat the nearest point, then move back up the river, following thethick of trees on the banks until they found the New Peoplevillage. Changing Sky had sent everyone to bed with a promise tomake a decision on who the emissary would be in the morning.As Texoje slipped through the woods near the village, hetried to push away the other names people had whispered aroundtheir fires all that night: Those With One Eye, Backward Ankle,Inside-Out Heart. But the truth was only one person had seen theNew People, Little Grass Blade.
 
Texoje stretched when he reached the edge of the ravine,limbering his muscles. He ran down and then up the sides of thegrassy ravine at top speed, his feet padding quickly so hewouldn't slip and break a leg and become food for one of the bigbrown puma that sometimes lived in the caves nearby.People trusted Little Grass Blade's words just because hisfather Big Plains had been a good hunter. Even though he wasonly eight years old, Little Grass Blade's words sounded wise,at least to the others.When Little Grass Blade had come back to the camphysterical and shrieking stories that made no sense, people hadlistened, even though his descriptions of what he had seencontradicted themselves. He described the people, and said theylived in a village of eggs from the Great Spirit, and keptanimals of all sorts in square hogans you could see through.Texoje had chewed the words slowly, decided they didn't tasteright, and spit them back out. If these new people could live inthe eggs of the great spirit, then surely they had no need tokeep animals for food. And if the hogans had walls you could seethrough, how would you even know they were there? Texoje knewthat Little Grass Blade was a born liar.Texoje reached the river bank at the bottom of the ravineand felt the water with his toe. The water was cold. He didn'tmind, because the sun was so big today it could have hardened

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