This was a sign of gratitude used when words failed strong emotion (See page 89) to interpret .



The Thunder Birds Blink The Mysterious ing Zigzag Lightning. the creatures. North and South. nestling close to the earth. lya. Men Sky. for There were other worlds of legendary folk the young aborigine. &quot.&quot. the Eater. I In both Dakotas. Under an open sky. snare weaver. While I recognized such a legend without the least difficulty. such as The Star&quot. and Old Double-Face are not wholly fanciful Iktomi. little For him the personified elements and other spirits played in a vast world right around the center fire of the wigwam. told over again have often listened to the same story by a new story-teller. the old Dakota story-tellers have told me these legends.PREFACE THESE legends are relics of our country soil. s once virgin the tales the so These and many others are much black-haired aborigine loved to hear beside the night fire. Spirits of Trees and Flowers.&quot. and of the &quot. I found the renderings varying V M182702 .&quot.

optical illusion. The old legends of America belong quite as much to the blue-eyed little patriot as to the black-haired aborigine. then in the American aborigine as in any other race. sincerity of belief. demands a little After peoples.Preface much in little incidents. since America in the last few centuries has acquired a second tongue. And now I have tried tales to transplant the root and all into native spirit of these the English lan guage. vi . And when they are the wise grown-ups may they grown not lack interest in a further study of Indian folklore. a study which so strongly suggests our tall like near kinship with the rest of humanity and points a steady finger toward the great brother mankind. though it were based true that &quot. Generally one helped the other in restoring some lost link in the original character of the tale.&quot. all he seems at heart much like other upon mere respect. and by which one is so forci bly impressed with the possible earnestness of If it be life as seen through the teepee door hood of ! much lies the eye of the beholder.







In truth. He wears a deerskin jacket. Iktomi dresses like a real Dakota brave. Each round braid falls hangs over a small brown ear and forward over his shoulders. even paints his funny face with red and yellow.OLD INDIAN LEGENDS IKTOMI AND THE DUCKS IKTOMI is a spider fairy. red bands. with on either on his moccasins hair is and tiny beaded His long black parted in the middle and wrapped with red. and draws big black rings He around his eyes. feet. He long wears soft brown fringes deerskin leggins side. his paint and . with bright colored beads sewed tightly on it.

No one really loves him. . Why ! he laughs outright with wide open mouth when some simple trap. Iktomi is a wily fellow. one helps him when he is in trouble. common sense of simpler Poor Iktomi cannot help being a little imp. spread a snare rather than to earn the smallest thing with honest hunting. Often his own conceit leads him He hard against the people. Those who come to admire his handsome beaded jacket and long fringed leggins soon go away sick and tired of his vain. And so long as he is a naughty No fairy. vain words and heartless laughter. sure folk are caught in a and fast.Old Indian Legends deerskins are the best part of him if ever dress is part of man or fairy. His hands are He prefers to always kept in mischief. he cannot find a single friend. never dreams another lives so bright as he.

he started off with a hop and a leap. Suddenly he rushed out. he tore up dry all tall grass with both his hands and tossed Tying it fast into the blanket. he looked straight into space toward the marshy river bottom. Snatching up a slender willow stick with his free left hand. his One day he sat teepee. On the hilltop he paused for breath.Iktomi and the Ducks Thus Iktomi lives alone in a cone-shaped wigwam upon hungry within the plain. dragging after him his blanket. he threw the light bundle of grass over his shoulder. Soon he came to the edge of the great level land. as if tasting some tender meat. his With wicked smacks of dry parched lips. Quickly spreading it on the ground. From side to side bounced the bundle on his back. as he ran lightfooted over the uneven ground. he peered . his eyes With a thin palm shading from the western sun. the four corners together in a knot.

Ah-ha!&quot. still bobbing up and down necks in the circular dance. Hereupon the drummers stretched till their they strangled their song for a look at the stranger passing by. called out a curious duck. They sang in unison a merry dance-song. munching &quot. and beat a lively tattoo on the drum. He bore on his back a very large bundle. With a willow cane he propped himself up as he staggered along beneath his burden. nod ding their heads and blinking their eyes. sat the chosen singers. tip to tip. around a small drum. . &quot. spread. With wings out they moved up and down Within the ring. Following a winding footpath near by. in a large circle.Old Indian Legends far his away into the all lowlands. own cheeks grunted he. came a bent figure of a Dakota brave.Ho! who old is there?&quot. the while. A group of wild ducks were dancing and feasting in the marshes. satisfied with what he saw.

entirely. said. We what you carry in ! We &quot. ! they both his Some even brushed their wings against the mysteri ous bundle. carry on my own answered with his Iktomi. &quot. Oh. t is only a pack of songs I carry in my blanket. must not spoil your dance. . halt urged one of the ! singers. Iktomi what you carry &quot. Nudging himself again. cried out other voices. Stop blanket ! ! stay ! Show I us what is in your &quot. &quot. My friends. pray in ! &quot. nudging his sides This reply all broke the Now must see up the ring ducks crowded about Iktomi. wily Iktomi &quot. us hurry off ! Stop Do not your blanket.My friends. you would not care to see if you only knew what is in my blanket. you what elbows. ! Old fellow. must know what shouted in is your blanket ears. &quot.&quot. Sing on ! dance on I ! I must not show back.Iktomi and the Ducks tell Ho.&quot.

air.Oh. down his I will build first a round straw house. planting both ends of each pole into the earth. These he covered thick with reeds and grasses. ! cried the curious ducks. then let us hear your songs &quot. as the ducks. &quot. In a strange low voice Iktomi began stood smiling. Hoye ! Iktomi. At length Iktomi consented to sing his With delight all the ducks flapped songs. &quot. All the ducks sat . in One by one the fat ducks waddled through a small opening. his queer old tunes. my songs in the open Quickly he bent green willow sticks. their ffoye ! wings and cried together.&quot. Soon the straw hut was ready. laid bundle on the ground.Old Indian Legends &quot. with great care. which was the only entrance way. strutted into the hut. for I never sing said he. Beside the door Iktomi eyeing his bundle of songs. &quot.

As the startled ducks sat uneasily on the ground. He seemed to be ing about &quot. song burst into full voice. for Iktomi had not forgot to cover up the All of a sudden his small entrance way. his eyes 9 Each one shut very tight and danced even harder. duck dared blink a wink.With eyes closed you must dance.&quot. forever red eyes shall have. s With eyes closed they did dance ! Iktomi to sing ceased to beat his drum.Istokmus : wacipo. He who dares to open his the center of the mov No ring. Up rose the circle of seated ducks and holding their wings close against their sides began to dance to the rhythm of Iktomi song and drum. tuwayatunwanpi kinkta. These were the words he sang &quot.Iktomi and round-eyed in a singer.&quot. circle the Ducks about the mysterious It was dim in that straw hut. He began louder and faster. han ista nisasapi which is. Iktomi changed his tune into a minor strain. &quot. .

! Run ! fly ! twisting your heads and breaking ! your necks cried.Old Indian Legends Up and down ! Shifting to the right of them they hopped round and round in that It was a difficult dance for blind dance.And : Oh ! your eyes yours are red-red!&quot. ! laughed of his Iktomi. Oh oh &quot. they cried to one another are red-red!&quot. the curious folk. For the warning words of the magic minor strain had proven true. Out they flew through the opening Skiska had made as he rushed forth with his alarm. Ah-ha &quot. ! ! squawked he Iktomi is in awful terror &quot. But as they soared high into the blue sky &quot. lay half of their crowd bundle of songs flat on their backs. peeped the least tiny blink at Iktomi within the center of the circle. Run out and &quot. At length one his eyes of the dancers could close ! no longer It was a Skiska who &quot. fly ! fly ! he Hereupon the ducks opened There beside Iktomi s their eyes. untying the four 10 corners . &quot. &quot.

Iktomi sat down on the ground with crossed long chin between his knees pointed toward the red flames. These were his dishes. stake he fastened a duck to roast. while his shins. I shall sit my dwelling. A eyes were on the browning ducks. A few Disap he buried under the ashes to bake.The sweet fat oozing out will taste well with the hard-cooked breasts. duck. He planted sharp-pointed On each sticks around the leaping flames.&quot. Heaping more willows upon the fire. his Having reached own teepee on the high level lands. he came out again with some huge seashells. Placing one under each roasting &quot.Iktomi and &quot.&quot. the Ducks blanket. He left straw hut for the rains and winds to pull down. 11 . he muttered. Iktomi kindled a large fire out of doors. pearing within his teepee. the little no more hungry within Homeward he trudged along with nice fat ducks in his blanket.

Just then wind came rushing by and . drop by drop. cracked limb without seeing a whiff of 12 it. then he sniffed impatiently the savory odor. The brisk wind which also played stirred the fire with a squeaky old tree beside Iktomi s wigwam. and crying break ! in I an old 11 man s &quot. voice. Iktomi. Help ! fall ! Iktomi shrugged his great shoulders. ing came from the tree. side to side the tree From I 11 was swaying &quot. &quot. He rose and looked around. The dripping Still of amber oil into pearly dishes. but did not once take his eyes from the ducks. He ! What sound exclaimed that makes my ear ache!&quot. eyes. pleased his hungry the old tree man is it called for help.Old Indian Legends Just above his ankles lie clasped and Now and unclasped his long bony fingers. The squeak Then he began climbing the tree to find the disagreeable He placed his foot right on a sound. holding a hand on his ear.

He sniffed impatiently the savory odor .. t .


Oh! my foot is crushed!&quot.Ah! pack upon hearing words turned to his comrades and the hear the foolish fellow! ! He says he has a duck feast to be eaten Let us hurry there for our share the wolves toward Iktomi ! &quot. on the tree he through his a pack of gray wolves roaming over the level lands. He ! ! Gray wolves ! Don t you come here tree so that I m caught fast in the feast is my duck getting cold. In vain he pulled and puffed to free himself. Wav ing his hands toward them. he called in his loudest voice.Iktomi and the Ducks There s pressed together the broken edges. he howled like a coward. While spied. Don t you come to eat up leader of s my The Iktomi said: &quot. sitting a prisoner tears. Away bounded lodge. in a strong wooden hand Iktomi foot was caught. &quot. s From the tree Iktomi watched the hungry 13 . &quot. meal.&quot.

the wolves began left to leave the place.Old Indian Legends wolves eat up his nicely browned fat ducks. through his whole body. heard them crack the small round bones with their strong long teeth and eat out Now severe pains shot the oily marrow.At cried out like a pouting child. &quot. they pawed out the ducks with such rude haste that a cloud of ashes rose like gray smoke over them. ashes!&quot. moaned Iktomi. when off.Hin-hin-hin!&quot. least you have my baking under the po!&quot. up from his foot &quot. when Iktomi &quot.Ho! shouted the mischievous to wolves. sobbed Iktomi. the wolves had scampered 14 All too late. Real tears his red-painted washed brown streaks across cheeks. Running back to the fire. Hin-hin-hin !&quot. He His foot pained him more and more. . Smacking their lips. &quot. a he says more ducks are ! be found under the ashes Come dead ! Let us have our fill this once!&quot.

Iktomi was released. .Iktomi and the Ducks the sturdy breeze returned. and. pulled apart the broken edges of the tree. But alas ! he had no duck feast. passing by.




The sun was but a hand s-breadth from the western edge of land. go to Inyan. With he fell half-crouching. ! He was to cuddling the evil memory he last bore those hungry wolves. half-running strides. he exclaimed. his still but sat body backward and forward.IKTOMI ALONE S BLANKET teepee sat within his Iktomi. &quot. At he ceased sway &quot. At once he hurried forth from his teepee ! Oh I 11 and. . rocking his body to and fro. Those bad. the greatgrand father. drew nigh to a huge rock on a hillside. and stiff as a stone image. and pray for food!&quot. with his blanket over one shoulder. 19 upon Inyan with outspread hands. bad gray wolves They ate up all my nice fat ducks!&quot. muttered he.

give me meat to eat I !&quot. hearing of Inyan.Grandfather! pity me. was the one most sought after. Great-grand he cried. 20 sky in the . am starving.Old Indian Legends &quot. seen the prairie put on a snow-white blanket and then change it for a bright green robe more than a thousand times. All father. The those all-powerful Great Spirit. Still unaffected by the myriad moons he hill. can hear the voice of who pray in many varied ways. He was He had great-grandfather. the while he stroked and caressed the face of the great stone god. rested on the everlasting listening to the prayers of Indian warriors. the large hard stone. of Before the sat the magic arrow he had Now. many seasons. who makes The the the trees and grass. I am hungry. finding there. the as Iktomi prayed and wept before the great-grandfather. Give me food. for he had sat upon the hillside many.

meat to eat! .Great-grandfather. give me &quot.


followed a foot path leading toward a thicketed ravine. have.&quot.Now. It was the smile of the Great upon the grandfather and the way child. Iktomi knew it. he cut large chunks of choice meat. cried Sharpening some willow sticks. He had not gone many paces into the shrubbery when deer! before him lay a freshly wounded &quot. &quot. he planted them around a wood-pile he had ready to 21 . grandfather. ward The prayer was heard. Slipping a long thin blade from out his belt.Iktomi 9 s Blanket face. accept my offering.This is the answer from the red western Iktomi with hands uplifted. t is all I said Iktomi as he spread his half-worn blanket upon Inyan s cold shoulders. Then Iktomi. west was red like a glowing sunset poured The upon a soft mellow light the huge gray stone and the solitary figure beside Spirit it. happy with the smile of the sunset sky. sky!&quot.

. Suddenly he paused and dropped his hands at his sides. Tucking it in a beaded case &quot. pointing his long chin toward the large gray stone. erect. wish had not given 11 Oh it ! I think I run up there and take back!&quot. Iktomi stood &quot. wish I had my blanket &quot. said he. I Ough ! ! Ah ! I am cold. He I does not need I my old it blanket as I do. While he was rubbing briskly two long sticks to start a fire. &quot. hovering over the pile of dry sticks and the sharp stakes round about it. to him. Ough ! hanging from looking about. all. Twilight was over &quot. whispered he. he shivered as he wiped his knife on the grass.Old Indian Legends kindle. On these stakes he meant to roast the venison. his belt. the sun in the west fell out of the sky below the edge of land. The old great-grandfather does not feel the cold as I do. He shivered again. Iktomi felt the cold night air upon his bare neck and shoulders.

old grandfather This was very You do not need it. Give my blanket back. In this pale light Iktomi stood motion His woodless as a ghost amid the thicket. Iktomi pulled it off &quot. the sacred symbol. Drawing the blanket tight over his shoulders. had no it warm need of his blanket. Thus running up the chattering all hillside. 23 . yet Iktomi did it. like a bright bent bow. he descended the hill with feet. But the chilly night wind quite froze his ardent thank-offering. climbed up from the southwest horizon a little way into the sky. A young moon. and had been very easy to part with a thing which he could not miss. his teeth the way. with a jerk. in the s Blanket sunshine. Seizing one cor ner of the half-worn blanket. for his wit was not wisdom. wrong. he drew near to Inyan. hurrying He was soon upon the edge of the ravine. I do ! !&quot.Iktomi Iktomi.

he took hold of one and shook in it. where was the deer felt the venison he had It warm in his hands a moment ago? rib was gone. At length. Spirit does not heed them 24 . for instead of being grieved that he had taken back his blanket. And though he wore sprang a blanket his teeth chattered more than ever. Then tle his blunted sense will surprise you. Iktomi was troubled. the venison before going for my of Those tears no longer moved the hand the Generous Giver. Only the dry bones lay on the ground like giant fingers from an open grave.Old Indian Legends pile was not yet still were His pointed stakes But bare as he had left them. lit reader . he cried aloud. The bones. kindled. The Great ever. loose at his their sockets. &quot. rattled together touch. Iktomi let go his hold. He back amazed. They were selfish tears. stooping over the white dried bones.Hin-hin-hin! If only I had eaten blanket!&quot.



Well hid between the lake and the wild he looked nowhere save into the pot of fish. The heap of smouldering ashes told of a recent open fire. sat Iktomi on the bare ground. Iktomi bent over some delicious boiled fish. Not knowing when the next meal rice.How. friend!&quot. he meant to eat enough now to some time. said a voice out of the wild Iktomi started. Fast he dipped his black horn spoon into the soup. 27 He . would last be. how. Iktomi had no regular meal times. for he was ravenous. beneath a large grown willow tree.IKTOMI AND THE MUSKRAT BESIDE a white lake. Often when he was hungry he went without food. &quot. my rice. With ankles crossed together around a pot of soup.

He peered through the long reeds from where he sat with his long horn spoon in mid-air. Yet Iktomi sat silent. friend ! said the voice again. &quot.Old Indian Legends almost choked with his soup. How. feel awkward before such lack of hospitality and wished himself under 28 . The muskrat began to water.&quot.Oh. will when Iktomi would ask. My you sit down beside me and &quot. friend ! said Iktomi. side. &quot. my &quot. On his lips hung a ready Yes. my The muskrat stood &quot. friend. it is my if friend who startled me. smiling. He hummed an old dance-song and beat gently on the edge of the pot with his buffalo-horn spoon. how.How. this time close at his Iktomi turned and there stood a dripping muskrat who had just come out of the lake. &quot. was talking. I wondered among the wild rice some spirit voice &quot. share my food ? That was the custom of the plains people. my friend.

The muskrat began to feel awkward .


I cannot run a race ! I am not a swift runner. and with you you are nimble as a deer. said Iktomi.&quot. he said : My friend. &quot. Springing to Iktomi began at once to tighten have half of the belt about his waist.&quot. together. it.Iktomi and After the Muskrat many heart throbs Iktomi stopped his drumming with upward &quot.Yes. . s into the muskrat and looking face. it not need to share with you.&quot. let us run a race to see who If I win. you shall his feet. answered the hun For a moment Iktomi stood with a hand on his long protruding chin. I shall If shall win this pot of fish. muskrat looked out of the corners fixed The of his eyes without moving his head. horn ladle. yes. We shall not run any race gry muskrat. His eyes were upon something in the air.My friend Ikto. He watched the wily Iktomi concocting a plot. suddenly turn 29 ing his gaze upon the unwelcome visitor. &quot. you win.

race for the boiled fish in yonder kettle ! said Iktomi. The &quot. Now. you shall run on the I on the other. in his blanket. Iktomi found his load a heavy one. they reached the opposite side Iktomi pried about in search of a heavy stone. back. is my left side of the lake. friend. Perspiration hung like beads on his brow.&quot. 30 . That will slacken race will be a fair my usual speed and the one. The muskrat helped stone to lift the heavy Then they upon Iktomi s back. I shall carry a large stone on my .Old Indian Legends &quot. His chest heaved hard and fast. Saying this he laid a firm hand upon the muskrat s shoulder and started off along the edge of the lake. the tall reeds fringing the shore. Each took a narrow path through parted. he wrapped &quot. found one half-buried in the shallow Pulling it it out upon dry land. When He water.

Tufts of reeds and grass under his raised their heads Hardly had they when Iktomi was many feet. With that thought &quot. he &quot. he quickly dropped the heavy stone. Iktomi halted stiff as if he had struck an invisible His black eyes showed a ring of white about them as he stared at cliff. 31 . paces gone. but nowhere did he see any sign of him. he is running &quot. exclaimed Iktomi. low under the wild he scanned the shore. patting his chest with both hands. Well. &quot. Yet as tall grasses on the lake saw not one stir as if to make way fast for the runner. rice ! said lie. &quot.Ah. Soon he reached the heap of cold ashes.Iktomi and the Muskrat He looked across the lake to see how far the muskrat had gone. No more of this ! said he. has he gone so ahead that the disturbed grasses in his trail have quieted again?&quot. he ran swiftly toward the fell flat goal. Off with a springing bound.

boiled fish &quot. my sitting with your ankles wound &quot. bone ! &quot. ! ! the water-man. am hungry. I see you. up came down from still did not rise With his 32 hands on his .Old Indian Legends the empty ground. the muskrat. with a hand on each bent knee and peeped far into the deep water. I would not have did I not Why than I know the muskrat would run through the water? faster He swims ! could ever run That is what he has done. ! around I my ! little pot of fish ! My &quot. Give me a Ha ha ha laughed &quot. Iktomi stepped He stooped forward to the water s brink. back while he shot hither like an arrow ! Crying thus to himself. The sound it out of the lake. &quot. &quot. for overhead. only I had shared my food lost like a real it all ! Dakota. ! There was no pot of There was no water-man in if sight ! Oh. There friend. friend. He has laughed at me for carrying a weight on my &quot. he exclaimed.

Let me you my food. and leaning over the limb he sat upon. Next time. &quot. My my friend. Iktomi turned his face upward into his the great willow tree. Iktomi almost choked it to death before he could get tree the out. &quot. muskrat sat laughing loud. mouth he begged.Iktomi and the Muskrat knees. &quot. give me a bone to gnaw Ha ha laughed the ! &quot. Opening wide friend. In the &quot. 33 . Be seated share with beside me. he let fall a small sharp bone which dropped right into Iktomi s throat. my friend. ! ! muskrat. say to a visiting friend.




Still farther first he bent from side to 37 side. tall bunches of Iktomi in his fringed buckskins walked alone across the prairie with a black bare head glossy in the sun He walked through the grass with light. it He lifted his foot lightly and placed gently forward like a wildcat prowling thick grass. shoulder he tilted his head. low over . a sum mer sun was shining bright. Here and there over the rolling green were coarse gray weeds. out following any well-worn footpath. noiselessly through the He stopped a few steps away from a very large From shoulder to bunch of wild sage.IKTOMI AND THE COYOTE AFAR off upon a large level land. From one large bunch of coarse weeds to another he wound his way about the great plain.

the closed eyelids that did not quiver the least bit. Now Iktomi stood beside it. gently he it lifted the foot before the other. He held his ear close to . he bent over the wolf. Gently.Old Indian Legends one hip and then over the other. to behind and placed Thus he came nearer and nearer the round fur ball lying looking at motionless under the sage grass. Far for ward he stooped. stretching his long thin neck like a duck. to see what lay under a fur coat beyond grass. the bunch of coarse A sleek gray-faced prairie wolf ! his pointed black nose tucked in between his four feet drawn snugly together tail . lines Pressing his lips into straight his and nodding head slowly. his hand and some bushy feet . what Iktomi Carefully he raised one foot and cau tiously reached out with his toes. wound over this is his nose a coyote fast asleep in the shadow of ! a bunch of grass spied.

All the while the coyote on his back lay gazing into the sky with wide open eyes. He blinked his eyes hard to keep out the salty perspiration streaming down his face. 39 . His long white teeth fairly gleamed as he smiled and smiled.Dead said he at last. ! of the it. he is still warm! him to my dwelling and have a roast my evening meal. Taking hold paw with the bird feather fast on is He nice fat meat &quot. but not ! ! See long since he ran over these plains there in his paw is caught a fresh feather. Ah-ha !&quot.Dead. large The wolf was and the teepee was far across the Iktomi trudged along with his bur prairie. carry for as &quot. he I ll exclaimed. den. he laughed. &quot. from !&quot.Iktomi and the coyote stirred s the Coyote nose. &quot.Why. smacking his hungry lips together. but not a breath of air it. he seized the coyote by its two fore paws and its two hind feet and swung him over head across his shoulders.

blink a blue Did you never see a birdie wink This is how it first became a saying among the plains people. a thin bluish white tissue quickly over his eyes and as quickly so quick that you think it was again . only a mysterious blue wink. Sometimes when children grow drowsy they blink blue winks. 40 In the midst of his . is great fun ! said the coyote He had never been borne on any one Iktomi back before and the new experi ence delighted him. feet is tiresome. but to be carried like a warrior from a brave fight in his heart. The coyote was ness and pride. To ride on one s own &quot. by both sleepi His winks were almost affected as blue as the sky. When slips off a bird stands aloof watching your strange ways. while others who are too proud to look with friendly eyes upon people blink in this cold bird-manner.Old Indian Legends &quot. now and then ? blinking blue winks. He lay there lazily on s s shoulders.

one from his bundle of mystery songs. do. up high and yellow Now Iktomi returned to the coyote who had been looking on through his eyelashes. The flames leaped streaks. Iktomi hopped and darted about at an imaginary dance and feast. thus He wondered what he lay still Iktomi would fell. he swung him to and fro. Once again the coyote 41 . Iktomi let him go. falling through and then he struck the ground with space. for in the next instant he was slipping out of Iktomi s falling. such a bump he did not wish to breathe for hands. the wolf swung toward the red flames.Iktomi and the Coyote new pleasure the swaying motion ceased. He was a while. Iktomi had reached his dwelling place. The coyote felt drowsy no longer. where he Hum ming a dance-song. He built a large fire out of doors. Taking him again by his paws and hind Then as feet. He gathered dry willow sticks and broke in them two against in red his knee.

With a quick turn he leaped out of the flames. jump out of his Sitting side on his haunches. my 42 friend. on the opposite of the fire from where Iktomi stood. Dumfounded. Hot air smote his nos trils. apart.Old Indian Legends fell through space.Another day. and now he struck a bed of cracking embers. Iktomi thought he saw a spirit walk out of his fire. From red his heels were scattered a shower of s coals upon Iktomi bare arms and shoulders. He thrust a palm to his ! hard over his mouth He could scarce keep from shrieking. He saw red dancing fire. Make the . the coyote began to laugh at him. Rolling over and over on the grass and rubbing the sides of his head against the ground. &quot. to head as he stood cooling a burn on his brown arm with his breath. the coyote soon put out the fire on Iktomi s eyes were almost ready his fur. do not take sure too much for granted. His fell jaws face.

A shower of red coals upon Iktomi s bare arms and shoulders .


is stone dead before you make a fire ! Then bushy off tail he ran so swiftly that his long hung out in a straight line with his back. 43 .Iktomi and the Coyote enemy &quot.




At length he heaved a sigh and &quot. Handsome glistening summer sun on the sat the bird of rain bow plumage. ! would be I &quot. I wish I feathers ! How I had such pretty wish I were not I If I ! only I were a handsome feathered creature how happy d be so glad to sit upon a very high tree and bask in the summer sun like you said he suddenly. Iktomi saw a rare bird sit ting high in a tree-top. He stood beneath the tree looking long and wistfully at the peacock s bright feath ers. began : Oh.IKTOMI AND THE FAWN IN one of his wanderings through the wooded lands. his eyes fast Iktomi hurried hither with bird. ! 47 . tail Its all long fan-like the beautiful in the feathers had caught colors of the rainbow.

Oh. I am ! so ugly ! I ! am Do so &quot.Old Indian Legends pointing his bony finger up toward the peacock. he sailed slowly down upon the ground. Yes yes shouted Iktomi. side. bright if tail feathers. turning his head from side to &quot. ! ! keep ten conditions change me only you would into a bird with long. tired now of playing the brave in beaded buckskins. who was eyeing the stranger below. ! implored Iktomi. beg of you make me into a bird with green and purple feathers like yours I &quot. 48 Right beside . ! ! palm. My touch will change you in a moment &quot.&quot.I power. &quot. into the most beautiful peacock if you can keep one condition. jumping up and down. tired of being myself Change me ! Hereupon the peacock spread out both his wings. and scarce moving them. The peacock then spoke to Iktomi have a magic : &quot. which caused his voice to vibrate in I could Yes yes a peculiar fashion. patting his lips with his &quot.

Iktomi vanished at the touch. ? Yes ! yes &quot. while the vain peacock. with some I impatience. spread out his .Are Iktomi s ear the peacock whispered. the other bird soared slowly upward. wings. He sat quiet and unconscious of his seemed content to limb in the After a gay plumage. 49 dizzy with his bright colors. &quot. While one of the pair strutted about if with a head turned aside as dazzled by his own bright-tinted tail feathers. ! if need be ! ve told you ten of them exclaimed Iktomi.Iktovii and the Pawn in Iktomi lie alighted. Very low &quot. There stood beneath the tree two handsome pea cocks. the No longer are you Iktomi Saying this the pea cock touched Iktomi with the tips of his mischief-maker. to keep one condition. Then I pronounce you a handsome feathered bird. you willing it though hard be &quot. He perch there on a large warm little sunshine.&quot. &quot.

Oh.Oh.&quot. wings. ! cried the peacock. &quot. Already he grew soar through restless. flapping his &quot. what a shame that bright fly into cannot the sky &quot. &quot. &quot. He yearned to above the trees high upward to the sun. He longed to fly space. birds 50 The flock of chattering flew by with . &quot.Oh!&quot. want try my wings. ! said he. &quot. but I wish they were light enough to the one condition.Old Indian Legends wings and elder bird.&quot. there I see a flock of birds flying ! thither Oh I ! oh & hard to fly! Brightly tinted feathers are handsome. no &quot. self. ! clucked the elder bird. &quot. of must try tail my wings I ! I am to tired bright feathers.No. lit on the same branch with the he exclaimed. fly ! Just there the elder bird interrupted him. Upon try to fly you shall be changed into your feathers former &quot.That is Never try to the day you fly like other birds.

&quot. fly! Ah! We ! sang the birds as Muttering unhappy vows to himself. old self again!&quot. &quot. s Only one rare bird sat on the tree. in 51 One by one they rose the air and shot a . groaned over. ! ! gave a lunge into the air. &quot. on the ground. Iktomi in a sad voice. &quot. pretty Make me Try me this once again ! he pleaded in vain. ! &quot.Old Iktomi wants to cannot wait for him they flew away. &quot.I am my bird.Oop the Fawn &quot. &quot. and with that he to come Wait for me &quot. stood a brave in brown buckskins. ! oop ! called some Possessed by an irrepressible impulse the I want He Iktomi peacock called out. and beneath. to their mates. The flock of flying feathers wheeled about and lowered over the tree whence came the peacock cry.Iktomi and whirring wings. Ik tomi had not gone far when he chanced upon a bunch of long slender arrows.

arrow ! to be I I an Make me into an arrow want to pierce the blue Blue overhead. young arrow. said the arrow magician.&quot. &quot. this is the one condition. Make me &quot. hard it be?&quot. Your flight must always to &quot. sight.I upon him and wailed. 52 He spoke slowly and . One con the dition. but two arrows stood ready Now. Yes ! yes ! shouted Iktomi. fly. sternly. in its center. There was no Iktomi. delighted. Hereupon the slender arrow tapped him gently with his sharp flint beak.Can into an arrow ! you keep a condition? though &quot. Only one was He was mak want ! ing ready for his flight when Iktomi rushed &quot. be in a straight line.Old Indian Legends straight line over the prairie. Never turn a curve nor jump about like a young fawn. arrow turned to ask. want to strike yonder summer sun &quot. Others shot lost to up into the blue sky and were soon left.

kittens. Behind them played the young fawns together. See ! .&quot. with you. Fawns want to Friends. said he. stiff happy you The young fawns stopped with and stared at the speaking 53 I long to be legs arrow &quot. to pierce the off Blue over head. balls. just romp and I with these fawns ! until he returns.Iktomi and the Fawn new At once he set about to teach the arrow how to shoot in a long straight line. is Looking quickly up into the sky. &quot. kicking The Iktomi arrow so their heels in the air.&quot. They frolicked about like They bounced on all fours like Then they pitched forward. watched them happy on the ground. The magician frolic out of sight. I 11 &quot. said he and he spun high into the sky. This is the way . jump and as leap are. he said in his heart. with large brown wondering eyes. do not fear me. While he was gone a herd of deer came trotting by.

and the strange talking arrow was gone. imaginary pieces out of his jacket. He gave one tiny leap like a fawn. and the charm was broken. &quot. &quot. 54 . He had seen Iktomi make his one leap. Iktomi became his former &quot. Oh ! I am myself. replied the arrow. begged Iktomi.No. From the high sky he had seen the fawns playing on the green. &quot. pinching and plucking &quot. no more. Then away he shot through the air in the direc tion his comrades had flown. ! ! The real arrow now returned to the earth.&quot. Arrow. self. ! cried Iktomi. change me once more ! &quot. I ! All of a sudden the fawns snorted with extended nostrils at what they beheld. I wanted to fly Hin-hin-hin &quot.Old Indian Legends can jump as well as you went on Iktomi. There among them stood Iktomi in brown buckskins. my friend. My old self himself &quot. He alighted very near Iktomi.

~ J* r- 1 & I There among them stood Iktomi in brown buckskins . i &


spots on your face you tell little fawn. tears were like a spring shower. From a neighbor s fire brought hither a red. very small. &quot. Oh. face ? said the fawn.&quot.When I was very. This she tucked carefully in at my head. my mother marked them fire. dear those &quot. he looked closely at the little brown spots all over the furry face. She covered me she over with dry sweet grass and piled dry cedars on top. on my face with a red hot She dug a soft large hole in the ground and made a it. fawn ! ! What beautiful brown Fawn.Iktomi and the Fawn By at this time around Iktomi. can me how brown spots were made on your &quot. This is 55 . the fawns gathered close They poked their noses him trying Iktomi s to know who he was. Stepping boldly to the largest fawn. &quot. red ember. A new desire dried them quickly away. bed of grass and twigs in placed Then she me gently there.Yes.

yes. pull the grass. &quot. glee. the brown spots were made on my face.&quot. with brown. and cedar interrupted Ikto.Say.&quot. If fill it with dry grass and you will jump into the pit.&quot. for same me ? my friend.&quot. Yes. once oftener than &quot.&quot. brown as those you &quot. &quot. my dig Now let us hole. cried Iktomi in 66 . will you do the Won t you mark my face &quot. fawn.will you be sure to cover me ? with a great deal of dry grass and twigs You will make sure that the spots will be as wear. Now.&quot.Oh. &quot. brown spots just like yours ? asked Iktomi.Old Indian Legends how &quot. I 11 pile up grass and willows mother the did. always eager to be like other people. sweet smelling grass answered the fawn. and gather sticks. I 11 cover you with wood. I can dig the ground and sticks.

on his back. till it Is that Iktomi s spirit ? asked one fawn &quot. I think No answered his comrade. writhing vanished in the blue ether. Brown. &quot. leaped down he into lay. a far-away &quot. wear forever ! &quot. brown spots to A red ember was tucked under the dry grass. great distance away they looked backward. with cedars. ! he would jump out before he could burn into smoke and cinders. After the hole was dug grass. mut tering something about brown flat spots.&quot. While the fawn covered him over it. 57 . Lengthwise.Iktomi and the Fawn aids in Thus with his own hands he making his grave. voice came up through them. and cushioned with Iktomi. rising. of another. They saw a blue smoke upward &quot. Off scampered the fawns after their mothers and when a .




fed While the welllittle children played about. their mother hung thin sliced meats upon long willow racks. for it was 61 . and the baby badgers very chubby. walls and roof were covered with rocks and straw. Old father badger was a great hunter. well how to track the deer and Every day he came home carry This ing on his back some wild game. This bag was like a huge stiff envelope.THE BADGER AND THE BEAR ON the edge of a forest there lived a large family of badgers. but far more beautiful to see. He knew buffalo. As fast as the meats were dried and sea soned by sun and wind. she packed them carefully away in a large thick bag. digging make-believe dwellings. kept mother badger very busy. their dwelling In the ground Its was made.

in peeped the head of a big black bear parched. These firmly tied bags laid of dried meat were upon the rocks In this in the walls of the dwelling. All the while the baby badgers stared hard at the unexpected comer. All of a sudden there footfall was heard a heavy near the entrance way. Silently he entered the dwelling and sat down on the ground by . arrows. Then the other clumsy foot came next.Old Indian Legends painted all over with many bright colors. The oval- In shaped door-frame was pushed aside. After the second foot. One day father badger did not go a hunt. His children sat making new about him on the ground floor. way they were both useful and decorative. ! His black nose was dry and the doorway. off for He stayed at home. Their small black eyes danced with delight as they watched the gay colors painted upon the arrows. stepped a large black foot with great big claws.

jaws frightened the small badgers. ing the racks of red meat hanging in the yard. Give me meat to kind. How. the father said.Ah han ! Allow me to pass &quot. is and knowing your heart hither. my friend. Hereupon the mother badger took long strides across the room. 63 . his strong Though he was a stranger and &quot. said the bear. drawing himself closer to the wall and crossing his shins together. he had to visit the badger family. Yes. I am saw your racks of red fresh meat. in them.&quot. my I friend. ? &quot. and as she had to pass in front of said : the strange visitor. Will you eat with us &quot.&quot. she &quot. starved. how!&quot. friend Your ! lips and nose look feverish and hungry. &quot.How. ! which was an apology. how.The Badger and His black eyes never on the rocky walls. &quot. paws and . I came eat. left the Bear the painted bags He guessed what was See He was come a very hungry bear. replied the bear.

the the noisy good!&quot. and smacking his that is eat. lips together. Always in the sat same place by the entrance way he down with crossed shins. . visits His daily were so regular that in his mother badger placed a fur rug She did not wish a guest place. saw him disappear after the woods near by. and soon over a bed of coals she broiled the venison. way of saying left food was very he the badger dwelling. At That day the bear had all he could nightfall he rose. never lifted the door-flap. would come the same black bear. Day day the crackling of of twigs in the forest told heavy footsteps. peep into ing through the door-flap after the shaggy bear. Out He it but thrusting aside entered slowly in. dwelling to sit 64 in her upon the bare hard ground. &quot. The baby badgers.Old Indian Legends Mother badger chose the most tender red meat.

Over a bed of coals she broiled the venison .


showing a row of large I have no dwelling. The bear sharp teeth.Yes.&quot. He I am strong.Yes.The Badger and the Bear At last one time when the bear returned. From the farther end of the room mother badger muttered over her bead work: &quot. He had grown fat upon the his nose badger s hospitality. you grew strong from our well-filled bowls. father badger queried &quot. The bear took one said &quot. His coat was glossy. my friend ! What ? &quot. was bright and black.&quot. &quot. stride forward and s ! shook his paw in the badger : face. smiled. As he entered the dwelling a pair of wicked gleams shot out of his shaggy head. &quot. Surprised by the strange behavior of the guest who remained standing upon the rug. very strong &quot. so you are. replied the bad ger. 65 I have no bags of . leaning his round back against the wall. : How. yes.

Wa-ough &quot. For reply came a low growl.I want them I am repeated he. I called : &quot. had pierced hard through the buckskin and stuck her fingers repeatedly with her sharp awl until she Mother badger. &quot.&quot. while her husband was talking to the bear. and by force hurled the badgers the father badger . pairs.Old Indian Legends dried meat. &quot. For the sake of my little ones leave us in in her excited peace.I fed you friend. she motioned with her hands to the children. out. It grew he louder and more fierce. had laid aside her work. On tiptoe they hastened to her side. Quietly the father badger spoke you. lifting both his terrible paws. ! roared. First then the mother. &quot. way. I I have no arrows. Now. though you came here a stranger and a beggar. The little He threw badgers he tossed by them hard upon the 66 . ! have found here on this spot/ his stamping See ! heavy strong ! foot. All these said he.

and. drew the feet. He w ith made it of bent willows and covered it dry grass and twigs.Be gone!&quot. No they could sooner had the baby badgers caught their breath than they howled and shrieked with pain and Ah what a dismal cry was theirs fright.The Badger and ground. having gained their little picked up their kicking babes. 67 Upon his return. wailing aloud. . he snarled. but without his arrows he could not get food for his children. The father and mother badger. &quot. All day father badger prowled through the forest. ! as the whole badger family went forth wail ! ing from out their distance own dwelling A little away from their stolen house the father badger built a small round hut. till air into their flattened lungs stand alone upon their feet. but alas ! was empty of food and arrows. the Bear Standing in the entrance way and showing his ugly teeth. This was shelter for the night it .

&quot.&quot. the sad him &quot. They laughed and pointed with their wee noses upward at the thin sliced meats upon the poles. and them. and with his big &quot. ! father badger sprawling on the ground. &quot. growled the angry bear. Black Bear ? My children are starving. Wa-ough begged the badger. he saw that the bear had brought with him Little cubs played under his whole family. As the badger stood there unrecognized. hind foot he sent said he. Be gone pounced upon the badger. &quot.Old Indian Legends the cry of the quiet of the little ones for meat. slicing red The bear was rack. like I 11 mother with bowed head. ! said he in his an unsteady entire Covering head and body in a long loose robe he halted beside the big black bear. beg meat for you voice. Have you no meat ! heart. Give me a small for &quot. 68 . piece of &quot. hurt a poisoned arrow wound. the high-hanging new meats. meat to hang upon the He did not pause for a look at the comer.

There was one.The Badger and All the little the Bear and ruffian bears hooted shouted &quot. rest His face was long and earnest. He would say No me. though the at the badger s fall. laughed aloud he did not see the joke. In his heart he was sad to see the badgers crying and In his breast spread a burning desire to share his food with them. He was the youngest His fur coat was not as black and glossy as those his elders wore. to see the beggar fall upon his cub. like It looked much more kinky wool. face. at by being himself. who did not even smile. &quot. however. Poor He could not help little baby bear he had always been laughed his older brothers. Thus again. He could not change the dif ferences between himself and his brothers. starving. ! Then said the my brothers would laugh at ugly baby bear to himself.&quot.I shall not ask my father for meat to give away.ha-ha!&quot. ! He was the ugly cub. The hair was dry and dingy. .

thrust him . he was singing happily and skipping around his father at Singing in his small high voice and drag ging his feet in long strides after him. &quot. piece he s notice. as if a prankish spirit oozed out from his heels. through the tall grass. directly in front of the entrance way.Old Indian Legends In an instant. On the following day the father badger came back once more. yet it was tough meat. Give He stood watching the big bear cutting thin slices of meat. he strayed off When leg. &quot. passed from him. was the only to the could take without his father Thus having given meat hungry badgers.he began. 70 when the bear turn ing upon him with a growl. as if his good intention had work. left s he made a quick side kick with his hind Lo ! there fell into the badger It hut a piece of fresh meat. He was ambling toward the small round hut. full of sinews. the ugly baby bear ran quickly away to his father again.

where the grass was wet with the His of a little blood of the newly carved buffalo. 71 and with a quiet . he sat it. beside After a long silence. too. he said within himself to bless lodge. the Bear He fell The badger fell on his hands. Then he arose. pray the Great Spirit Thus he built a small round : I 11 Sprinkling water upon the heated heap of sacred stones within. He carried into the sacred vapor lodge. Look ing fearfully toward the bear and seeing his head was turned away. family. he snatched up the small thick blood. his On his return to &quot. bless this little buffalo blood.&quot. After plac ing near the sacred stones. must be it. Underneath his girdled blanket he hid it in his hand. it. &quot. down he mut tered : Great Spirit. he made ready to purge his body.The Badger and cruelly aside.&quot. keen starving eyes caught sight red clot lying bright upon the green.&quot. purified before I ask a blessing upon it it thought the badger. &quot. The buffalo blood.

Listening closely the young man stood looking steadily upon the ground. At length the father badger moved away. &quot. food. we have no meat. ! &quot. &quot. 66 My son. Close behind him some one followed.&quot. Where ? queried the avenger. the avenger had sprung from out the red globules.Old Indian Legends dignity stepped out of the lodge. The bad ger turned to look over his shoulder and to his great joy he beheld a Dakota brave in In his hand he car Across his handsome buckskins. 72 . &quot. ! replied the brave &quot. I am going again to beg for answered the badger. I am your avenger Immediately the badger told the sad story of his hungry little ones and the stingy bear. &quot.&quot. exclaimed the badger with My son extended right hand. . father. ried a magic arrow. to the badger In answer prayer. How. &quot. s back dangled a long fringed quiver.

the Bear &quot. &quot. my friend ! Here is my knife. He it spied the arrow. &quot. the bear stood ago. Cut your favorite pieces from the said he. He wondered what had inspired the big bear to such a generous deed.TJie Badger and with you. .&quot. This made &quot. said the badger eagerly. He narrowed his eyes at the tall stranger walking beside him. He smiled erect with a hand on his thigh. How.&quot. deer. At once he guessed was the he had heard long. long As they approached. The bear saw the badger coming distance. avenger of whom upon them. Then I go replied the young brave. the old badger happy. badger.How!&quot. father&quot. The young avenger waited till the badger took the 73 long knife in his hand. holding out a long thin blade. He was delighted to be called by the first human in the creature. He was proud of his son.

Old Indian Legends


full into the

black bear

s face,




to do justice.

You have
poor father.

returned only a knife to



return to





was deep and powerful.

In his black

eyes burned a steady

The long strong
shook with

teeth of the bear rattled

against each other, and his shaggy body



cried he, as


he had been shot.


into the dwell

ing he gasped, breathless and trembling,


out, all of



This is the bad you We must flee to the forest

for fear of

the avenger




magic arrow." Out they hurried,


the bears,


disappeared into the woods.





returned to their



Then the avenger




said he in parting,





IT was a clear





blue sky dropped low over the edge of the

green level land.
directly overhead.


large yellow sun


The singing

of birds filled the


space between earth and sky with sweet

Again and again sang a yellowbreasted birdie Koda Ni Dakota He



Koda Ni Dakota upon it. which was Friend, you re a Dakota Perchance the Friend, you re a Dakota!







meant the avenger with the magic
in his paint

arrow, for there across the plain he strode.

He was handsome

and feathers, proud with his great buckskin quiver on his back and a long bow in his hand. Afar an eastern camp of cone-shaped teepees he was going. There over the Indian

In vain tried the chieftain of the tribe to among his warriors a powerful marks man who could send a death arrow to the man-hungry bird. their screaming lodges. At last to urge his men find to their utmost skill he bade his crier pro claim a new reward. Covering their heads with their blankets. Then it was that the people.Old Indian Legends village hovered a large red eagle threaten ing the safety of the people. s Of the chieftain two beautiful daughters he would have his choice who brought the its dreaded red eagle with an arrow in breast. ran into one dared to venture out till the red eagle had disappeared beyond the west. they sat trembling with fear. No terror-stricken. Every morn ing rose this terrible red bird out of a high chalk bluff and spreading out his gigantic wings soared slowly over the round camp ground. 78 . where meet the blue and green.

robes girdled tight about their waists. within the dwellings many eyes peeped through the small holes in the front lapels of the teepee. both these words. trimmed new arrows for the contest. the old warriors stayed not They crouched low upon But all open ground. At gray dawn there stood indis tinct under the shadow of the figures .The Tree-Bound Upon hearing the village. At length when the morning sun peeped over the eastern 79 also horizon at the . eyes alike were fixed upon the top of the high bluff. bluff many human in silent as ghosts and wrapped arrow. they waited with chosen bow and Some cunning with the group. Breathless they watched for the soaring of the red eagle. both heroes and cowards. the women peered out upon the Dakota men prowling about with bows and arrows. From With shaking knees and hard-set teeth. the men of young and old.

Old Indian Legends armed Dakotas. ! groaned the chieftain. . wigwams. over the men with their strong bows and arrows bent. Ah ! slowly moved those by the indifferent wings. Then he dived into the air. He-he-he 80 &quot. ! In an instant the long bows were Strong straight arrows with red sped upward to the blue feathered tips sky. beyond the reach of eye. Slowly he winged his way over the round camp ground . arrows. while the would-be heroes sulked within their &quot. the red eagle flew away. sudden clamor of high-pitched voices broke the deadly stillness of the dawn. A The women talked invulnerable red of excitedly about s the the eagle feathers. he ruffled his neck and his strong wings together. untouched poison-beaked Off to the west beyond the reach of arrow. the red eagle walked out upon the edge napped of the cliff. Pluming his gorgeous feathers.

When the last one fell. the stranger taking Following the point of his arrow with their eyes. They were talking of a strange young man whom they spied while out upon a hunt for deer beyond the bluffs. They saw aim. they beheld a herd of buffalo. arrows it pierced through the head of the lit creature and spinning in the air into the next buffalo buffalo fell head.The Tree-Bound On the evening of the same day sat a group of hunters around a bright burning fire. he ran thither and picking up his magic arrow wiped slipped it carefully on the soft grass. 81 He it . One by one the quivering upon the sweet grass they were straight sides. grazing. into his long fringed quiver. With limbs they lay on their stood The young man calmly by. The arrow sprang But unlike other from the bow ! It darted into the skull of the foremost buffalo. counting on his fingers the buffalo as they dropped dead to the ground.

He sent forth fleet horsemen.&quot. hungry hunters tribe of men or beasts ! cried the among themselves as they hastened away. for the story of the all badger s man-son was known over the level lands.&quot. of the stranger s When the hunter s tale arrow reached the ears of the chieftain. kill the red eagle with his magic Let him win for himself one of daughters. They were afraid of the stranger with the sacred arrow. sprung up from the earth out of a clot of buffalo blood. &quot. his name. 82 they said.If him his birth.He is going to make a feast for some &quot. Let him arrow. and his he is the avenger with the magic arrow. bid him come hither. &quot. He is coming.Old Indian Legends &quot. to learn of deeds. my beautiful he had said to old his messengers. &quot. his face brightened with a smile. After four days and nights the braves returned.We .

fringed He carries on his back a long which he keeps his magic arrow. He is coming now to kill the big red eagle. fully recovered from the brown burnt spots. He is straight and tall . At once he If only was filled with a new desire. His keen eyes scanned 83 . overheard the people talking.&quot. Beneath the tree sat in front of his teepee he upon the ground with chin between his drawn-up knees. His bow is long and strong.The Tree-Bound have seen him. said he in his heart. &quot. with large black eyes. I had the magic arrow. Back to his lonely wigwam he hastened. lines and wears the penciled his temples like our of red over men of honored rank.&quot. All around quiver in the camp ground from mouth it to ear passed those words of the returned messengers. I would kill the red eagle and win the chieftain s daughter for a wife. Now chanced that immortal Iktomi. He paints his round cheeks with bright red. handsome in face.

Dakota ! Iktomi put his hand you over his mouth as he threw his head far a Dakota backward. the bird with the yellow breast sang loud &quot. And when Friend. Ha ! ha ! t is he ! the man with the magic arrow!&quot.He kill your friend. &quot. but his arrow will He is a Dakota.&quot. mut tered raised old All of a his sudden he an open palm to brow and peered afar into the west. The summer sun hung bright in the middle of a cloud less sky. avenger. &quot. one of your kind is ! but soon he tree! 11 grow ha!&quot. said the people. There across the green prairie was a man walking bareheaded toward the east. 84 . into the bark on this Ha! ha! he laughed again. &quot. laughed Iktomi. again re Koda ! Ni &quot. He was ! watching for the He is coming Iktomi. laughing at both the bird and man.Old Indian Legends the wide plain.

my in I see you are dressed handsome deerskins and have red paint on your cheeks. when : Iktomi. ! tree-top. going to some feast or dance. how. . cannot climb so 85 and get the I would high. called out How. Seeing the young man only smiled Iktomi went on u I have not had a mouthful of : young and shoot yonder bird for me brave. &quot. upward and the bird fell. My I friend. Have pity on me. Iktomi heard the swish strides nearer ! swish! of the stranger tall grass. You I are may ask?&quot. where sat a bird on the highest sent branch. In the next branch it was caught between the forked prongs. With these words Iktomi pointed toward the &quot. always ready an arrow to help those in distress.The Tree-Bound The young avenger walked with swaying and nearer toward the lonely wigwam and tree. s feet through the the He was &quot. food this day. The young avenger. climb the tree bird. passing now beyond friend ! tree. springing to his feet.

he muttered indistinct words all the while. replied the young man. Rub on the grass and then on a piece of deerskin. : branches.&quot. pleaded Iktomi. 66 Leave them safe upon the grass again.Old Indian Legends get dizzy and fall. toss to me your arrow that I may have &quot. Together with his dangling pouches and tinkling ornaments. till. The avenger began to scale the tree. dered.&quot. At once Iktomi bing it seized the arrow. it clean on soft deerskin &quot. you are down You are right. bird. How ! said the brave. the honor of wiping !&quot. when Iktomi cried to him My friend. hearing . The young man. quickly slipping off his long fringed quiver. he placed it on the ground. your beaded buckskins may be torn by the &quot. exclaimed Iktomi.&quot. &quot. and threw the bird and arrow to the ground. step first ping downward from limb to limb. Now he climbed the tree unhin Soon from the top he took the My friend.

&quot.Ah! &quot. I cannot hear what you say &quot. said aloud tree!&quot. . Again stooping over the arrow Iktomi continued his repetition of charm words.Oh. the chieftain beautiful daughter ! Oh. &quot. grow fast to the Still bark of the tree. Iktomi. I laughed the have the magic arrow ha!&quot. I was only talking of your big heart.The Tree-Bound the low muttering. he whispered. Grow fast. I shall &quot. set me 87 free ! tree-bound Dakota brave. Iktomi : Grow fast to the Before the brave could leap from the tree he became tightrgrown bad ! to the bark. ! my friend. wed &quot.&quot. I have the &quot. Iktomi. begged the But Iktomi s &quot. he ! said &quot.&quot. &quot. : I shall kill the red eagle s . : Iktomi. &quot. said &quot. beaded buckskins of the great avenger Hooting and dancing beneath the tree. Suddenly drop bark of the ping the arrow and standing erect. the young man moved slowly downward.

! me loose set ! tomi has played me false cried me bark of his tree &quot.&quot. he started off: eastward.Old Indian Legends ears were like the fungus on a tree. set me free ! I ! am Cut glued to the tree like its own bark prisoner. he walked away with a face turned slightly skyward. &quot. Ikme free He has made ! ! the voice again. &quot. woman. . He did not hear with them. She heard the wailing man s voice. Wearing the handsome buckskins and carrying proudly the magic arrow in his right hand. She paused to listen to the sad words.It &quot. may Oh ! be a cut spirit. thought she. Looking around she saw nowhere a human creature. Imi tating the swaying strides of the avenger. Oh. carrying on her strong back a bundle of tightly bound willow passed near by the lonely teepee. me &quot. loose ! moaned the A young sticks.

Too shy loose the for words. axe she hurried to the tree. used This was. Free once more. her face. she cut whole bark. When bewildered she woman reached her dwelling. he waved his hand.The Tree-Sound The young woman dropped her pack of With her stone firewood to the ground. There before her astonished eyes clung a young brave close to the tree. To eagle. a few paces from the young woman. upward and downward. With it came the young started man also. rode swiftly across the mounted a pony and the rolling land. it Like an open jacket she drew to the ground. she carried camp ground in the east. yet too kind-hearted to leave the stranger tree-bound. to the chief tain troubled by the red 89 her story. he Looking backward. before away. .a sign of gratitude failed to interpret strong when words the emotion.




camp ground had walked a long journey hither. the He the avenger come to shoot the cried red eagle. was waiting for the chieftain s men spy him. but he did not heed them. where sat the &quot. His face was turned toward the round at the foot of the hill. They reached the side of the stranger. man is with the long bow.&quot. runners to each other as they bent forward swinging their elbows together. Proud and 1 93 . He He to Soon four strong men ran forth from the center wigwam toward the hillock.SHOOTING OF THE RED EAGLE A MAN a little in buckskins sat hillock. upon the top sun of The setting shone bright upon a strong bow in his hand.

Old Indian Legends


he gazed upon the cone-shaped wig beneath him. Spreading a hand

somely decorated buffalo robe before the

man. two


warriors lilted

him bv

each shoulder and placed him gently on it. Then the four men took. each, a corner

the blanket and carried the stranger,

with long proud steps, toward the chieftain


to greet the stranger, the tall chief

you are the avenger with the magic arrow said he. extending to him a smooth soft

tain stood at the entrance way.






great chieftain


replied the


holding long the chieftain s hand. Enter ing the teepee, the chieftain motioned the

young man
a center

to the right side of the door

way, while he



him with

burning between them. Word less, like a bashful Indian maid, the avenger ate in silence the food set before him on


Shooting of the

Red Eagle

the ground in front of his crossed shins.


he had finished his meal he handed

empty bowl


chieftain s



Mother-in-law, here







answered the woman,

taking -the bowl. With the magic arrow in his quiver the stranger felt not in the least too presuming

addressing the


as his mother-


Complaining of fatigue, he covered his face with his blanket and soon within the


teepee he lay fast asleep.

The young man

not handsome after



whispered the


in her





but after he has killed the red


he will

seem handsome


answered the

That night the



in their burial


sky reached the


northern horizon, before the center

Old Indian Legends
within the teepees had flickered out.






through the smoke lapels was now hushed, and only the distant howling of wolves
broke the quiet of the village. But the lull between midnight and dawn was short

Very early the oval-shaped doorwere thrust aside and many brown

faces peered out of the

wigwams toward
the east.

the top of the highest bluff.


the sun rose up out of

The red painted avenger stood ready within

camp ground

for the flying of the red








hovered over the round village as if he could pounce down upon it and devour
the whole tribe.


arrow shot up into the sky the anxious watchers thrust a hand hinnu quickly over their half-uttered




The second and the




upward but missed by a wide space the

Shooting of the

Red Eagle
lazy indifference

soaring with

over the


with the long bow.

All his arrows he spent in vain.




blanket brushed


elbow and shifted

the course of



said the stranger

as the people gathered around him.

happening, a woman on horseback halted her pony at the chief







was no other than the

young woman who cut bound captive



While she told the story the chieftain listened with downcast face. I passed

him on








she ended.

Indignant at the bold impostor, the wrath
ful eyes of the chieftain

to the

fire like

red cinders

in the

night time.





At length

How, you have done Then with quick decision he gave deed." command to a fleet horseman to meet the Clothe him in these my best avenger.

woman he me a good


Old Indian Legends
said he, pointing to a bundle

within the wigwam. In the meanwhile




Iktomi and dragged him by his long hair to the hilltop. There upon a mock-pillared
they bound


hand and


Grown-ups and children sneered and hooted at Iktomi s disgrace. For a half-day he
lay there, the laughing-stock of the people.

Upon the arrival of

the real avenger, Iktomi

and chased away beyond the

outer limits of the

camp ground.


the following morning at daybreak,

peeped the people out of half-open door-

There again in the midst of the large camp ground was a man in beaded buck
In his hand was a strong bow and Again the big red eagle red-tipped arrow.

appeared on the edge of the




his feathers

and flapped


He placed the arrow on the bow .


. The and bird rose into the air. In awe and amazement the village was dumb. a loud shout of the people went up to the sky. three times the eagle tumbled from the great fell height and heavily to the earth.Shooting of the Heel Eagle The young man crouched low ground. Thus he won the beautiful Indian princess who never tired of telling to her children the story of the big red eagle. plucking a red eagle feather. to the He placed the arrow on the bow. placed it in his black hair. flint for drawing a poisoned the eagle. two. Then hither and thither ran singing men and women making a great feast for the avenger. that no one had seen the arrow fly from his long bent bow. He moved his outspread lo ! wings one. And when the avenger. so sure his sight. ! An ! arrow stuck in his breast He was dead So quick was the hand of the avenger.




IKTOMI AND THE TURTLE THE huntsman Patkasa (turtle) stood bent over a newly slain deer. Patkasa had hunted the morning without so much as spying an ordinary blackbird. Patkasa stumbled upon the deer in his path. When : have pushed me hither 103 &quot. ! . he exclaimed Good spirits &quot. Another s stray shot had all killed the deer. homeward. The red-tipped arrow he drew from the wounded deer was unlike the arrows in his own quiver. he walked last returning At slowly with downcast eyes. pitied Kind ghosts the unhappy hunter and led him newly slain deer. that his children to the should not cry for food. tired and heavy-hearted that he had no meat for the hungry mouths in his wigwam.

my friend &quot. &quot. began Iktomi. it ! cried Patkasa. rubbing his together. without touching a hair on his gested Iktomi. thick palms . smiling a thin smile which spread from one ear to the other.&quot. &quot.Old Indian Legends Thus he leaned long over the friendly ghosts. ! answered Patkasa. 104 funny. It was not a spirit this time. Iktomi friend.&quot. It and a hand fell on his shoulder. you &quot. let you are a us have a little skillful contest. &quot. my Now friend. &quot. a How. I fear I cannot do &quot. still stooping over the deer. : &quot. sug Oh. was old Iktomi. gift of the How. My you are a skilled hunter. Suddenly raising up his head Patkasa s black eyes twinkled as he asked Oh. fellow. really say so &quot. ? Yes. Let us see who can jump over the deer hide. ! said a voice behind his ear.

you are a skilled hunter .My friend.


Patkasa. swung his and fro.&quot. still Ho-wo. fellow say you are a skillful do. But Patkasa tripped upon a the leap stick and fell hard against the side of to be kicking ! the the deer. said Iktomi.&quot.Iktomi and &quot. &quot. the Turtle I Have no coward s doubt. : Let the winner have the deer eat!&quot. At So quick length he started off on the run. Patkasa was more afraid of being called a deer. Just before the run and leap Iktomi put in to &quot. In little puffs Patkasa laughed uneasily. coward he than of losing the replied. 105 . all the while biting hard his under lip. who finds With these words nothing hard to Iktomi led Patkasa a short distance away. with doubled fat fists. working his short arms. you may jump arms to first. &quot. and small were his steps that he seemed Then ground only. Now. Patkasa.&quot. It was too late now to say no.

Patkasa was always ready to believe the words of scheming people and to do the little favors any one asked of him. was the last Hardly word spoken than Iktomi gave ! jump a leap high above the deer. How ever. I do not hear your words ! 106 . now out of sight. &quot. pat &quot. turned up his nose at Iktomi. him to his feet. friend. Oh.He-he-he!&quot. ting the sullen Patkasa on the back.&quot. Ikto &quot. . pretend that his ing disappointment friend had fallen. friend. he said &quot. on this occasion. said Iktomi. as much as to &quot.&quot. &quot. he did not answer Yes. : Now it my turn to try the high &quot. no. My watch the deer while I go to bring my children. exclaimed Iktomi. ! laughed he. The game is mine &quot.Old Indian Legends &quot. Lifting is. darting lightly through the tall grass. my He realized that Iktomi s flattering He almost say : tongue had made him foolish.

take you to the turtle s He ran along a narrow footpath dwelling.&quot.I know where Patkasa lives. ! said Iktomi in a loud whisper as he gathered his little ones &quot. came his children with tear-streaked There &quot. front yard ! The young Iktomis stretched their necks and rolled their round black eyes like 107 . on the bank. of laughter grew louder and it All of a sudden became hushed. Old Iktomi led his young Iktomi brood to the place where he had left the turtle. ! There is Patkasa broiling venison There his teepee.Iktomi and the Turtle Soon there came a murmur of voices. The sound louder. &quot. sign of Nowhere was there any Then the Patkasa or the deer. but it was vacant. toward the creek near by. heels faces. and the savory fire is in his is &quot. said father Iktomi to his children. Close upon his I shall Follow me. &quot.Be still!&quot. ! babes did howl &quot.

birds. 108 In a large willow . and hooted with great glee. fire ! The &quot. into the Splash ! splash ! the water leaped it upward into spray. Alias ! said a gruff voice across the r water. for soon after that sign I shall return to you with some tender to the the water. coals ! laughed the brood of Iktomis. they chased one another along the edge of the creek. Thus saying Iktomi plunged creek. black spots. the broiled venison. Clapping together their little hands. Watch When you surface of see the black coals rise clap your hands and shout aloud. They shouted &quot.Old Indian Legends newly hatched the water. meat. &quot. into Now. up The creek was seething with the dancing of round black things.&quot. The cooled. &quot. They peered s fire. It w as Patkasa. I will cool Patkasa I shall bring you closely. Scarcely had become leveled and smooth than there bubbled many &quot.

those black spots on its By this No more danced surface.Iktomi and the Turtle tree leaning far over the water he sat upon a large limb. for they were the toes of drowned. crying and calling for their water-dead father. old Iktomi. He was The Iktomi children hurried away from the creek. 109 . the water was calm again. On the very same branch fire was a bright burning over which time Patkasa broiled the venison.




the ground the land was pitchy There are night people on the plain who love the dark. Amid the black level land they meet to frolic under the stars. from the edge of the level land. young. Thus afar off of the was that one very black night. out it wooded river bottom glided forth two 113 .DANCE IN A BUFFALO SKULL IT was night upon the prairie. they the think. Then when their sharp ears hear any strange footfalls nigh they scamper into away deep shadows of night. Upon black. Over head the stars were twinkling bright their The moon was red and yellow lights. There they are safely hid from all dangers. soon drifted low beneath the horizon. it A silvery thread among the stars.

stealthy feet. There in a huge old buffalo skull was a. Slowly but surely the terrible eyes drew nearer and nearer to the heart of the level land. They were laughing and talking among them selves while their chosen singers sang loud a merry tune. They grew larger The dark hid the body of They the creature with those fiery eyes. just over the tops of the It might have been a wild cat prowling low on soft. out of streamed the buffalo skull through all the curious sockets 114 and . They came farther and far ther into the level land. and brighter. gay feast and dance Tiny little field mice ! were singing and dancing in a circle to the boom-boom of a wee. on. built a small the center light of their open fire within queer dance house. came on and prairie grass. They The holes.Old Indian Legends balls of fire. wee drum.

Tiny field mice were singing and dancing in a circle .


Even the cry was unheeded by the mice within the lighted buffalo skull. All unconscious the those eyes. and. the eyes moved toward the skull. They were little feasting and dancing . happy mice nibbled at 115 . stood together a little dis tance away. came that pair of Now buffalo fearful closer and more swift. turning their pointed noses to the stars.Dance in a Buffalo Skull on the plain in the middle of the night was an unusual thing. of sleepy birds. howled and yelped most of the wolves dis mally. A pack of wolves. But so merry were the mice they did not hear the kins. those funny All the while across the dark from out the low river bottom fiery eyes. A kins &quot. they were singing and laughing furry fellows. fearing to come nigh this night fire. light &quot. now of fiercer and glaring. disturbed by the unaccustomed fire.

Some carried their tails side in rhythm.A cat! a cat!&quot. squeaked a frightened mouse as he jumped out from a hole in the back part of the skull. Spirit of the &quot. over their arms. each bouncing hard on his two hind feet. The singers had The drummers beat the time. Ah. dark. started another song. 116 . very near are those round yellow eyes Very low to the ground they seem ! to creep creep toward the buffalo skull. buffalo ! &quot. turning their heads from side to In a ring around the fire hopped the mice. cried other mice as they scrambled out of holes both large and Noiseless they ran away into the snug. while others trailed them proudly along.Old Indian Legends dried roots and venison. All of a sudden they slide into the eyesockets of the old skull. &quot.



It were wading waist deep amid the wild rice. with his Reaching and kicking upward tiny hands and feet. water-fowls were flying over the lakes. the wives were roasting wild duck and making down pillows. with bows and arrows. In the largest teepee sat a young mother wrapping red porcupine quills about the long fringes of a buckskin cushion. he played with the dangling strings of his heavybeaded bonnet hanging empty on a tent pole above him. was now the hunting Indian men. within their wigwams. Near by. 119 . Beside her lay a black-eyed baby boy cooing and laughing.THE TOAD AND THE BOY THE marshy season.

she came striding homeward. at once shifting the bundle to the right and with both hands over her head. she hurried away toward the wooded ravine. she quickly girdled her blanket tight about her waist. Near the entrance way she stooped low. The babe Leaning on one hand and softly whispering. with a loop of rope over both her shoulders. Her loose buckskin dress was made for such freedom. she threw a light cover over her baby. She was strong and swung an slipped a short-handled ax ax as skillfully as any man. and with through her belt.Old Indian Legends At length the mother quills fell fast asleep. lifting the noose from Having thus dropped the 120 . It was almost no willow time for the return of her husband.a little lullaby. laid aside her red and white sinew-threads. Soon carrying easily a bundle of long willows on her back. Eemembering there were sticks for the fire.

In a moment &quot. We have not seen your &quot. they said to her as she started They met the returning husbands. she called of the child. crying. you. Along the shore 121 of the . We will search with off.The Toad and the Boy wood to the ground.&quot. tle son is gone Her keen eyes swept &quot. There was nowhere any sign est teepees. she disappeared into her teepee. tears in her eyes the told her story. to the near : Has any one seen is my &quot. who turned about and joined in the hunt for the missing child. baby &quot. queried the women. With great &quot. ! My little son gone ! Hinnu ! Hinnu ! exclaimed the women. she came run ! My son My lit ning out again. ! east and west and all around her. ! What mother has happened?&quot. fists Running with clinched &quot. of their rising to their feet and rushing out child wigwams. ? He is gone &quot.

From some was also the sound of the father voice singing a Thus ten summers and as many winters dis have come and gone since the strange appearance of the little child. The birds were flying high toward the south.Old Indian Legends lakes. to hear the little was sad. the wailing solitary woman was heard from that far distance s wigwam. of the lost baby to search 122 . found. sad song. they looked in vain. The teepees around the lakes were gone. It save one lonely dwelling. Every autumn with the hunters came the un happy parents again for him. among After the high-grown reeds. indeed. was growing late in the autumn. mother wailing aloud for her son. Till the winter snow covered the ground and ice s covered voice the lakes. He was nowhere It to be many days and nights the search was given up.

when the moaning ceased. a pair of bright black eyes tall peered at her through the rice. He rushed into a small hut of reeds 123 and grasses. went away from the mother walked again One even along the lake shore weeping. % At length. Crouching low to the marshy ground. the teepees were folded and the families the lake region. He wore a loin cloth of woven sweet grass. reeds and A little wild boy stopped his grasses. one by one.The Toad and the Boy Toward the latter part of the tenth sea son when. His long. ing. loose hair hanging down his brown back and shoulders was carelessly tossed from his among the tall round face. he sprang to his feet and ran like a nymph with swift outstretched toes. across the lake from where the crying woman wild play stood. the eyes of the wild boy grew dim and wet. he listened to the wailing voice. . As the voice grew hoarse and only sobs shook the slender figure of tne woman.

Stepping outside. gruff. Mother I ! Mother ! Tell me what voice it was heard which pleased my ears. my son. tle She had reared a large family of lit toads. the wailing the human voice and marveled at throat which produced the strange in her great desire to keep the stolen boy awhile longer. Listen ! replied the great old toad.&quot.Old Indian Legends &quot. said he. she stood by the en She was old and badly puffed trance way. do not say it you Do not eyes. can please your ear and break your heart. broke forth: . I tell &quot. out. grunted a big. she ventured In a to cry as the Dakota woman does. but none of them had aroused her She had heard love.It my eyes grow wet!&quot. &quot. ugly toad. brought tears to your You have never heard me weep. but made breathless. My me son. coarse voice she 124 sound. &quot. nor ever grieved her. of was the voice a weeping woman like it.Han. Now. you heard.

A little boy stopped his play among the grasses .


voice! pouted the boy with some I want to hear the woman s Tell me.No. s ear with the names of valuable voice Having shrieked in a torturing and mouthed extravagant names. Ermine. no!&quot. red blanket. the human voice stirs all my feelings ! The toad mother &quot. the Boy Hin-hin. &quot. into her dwell ing. impatience. did ? ? your eyes to Did my my voice bring tears to words bring gladness not like your ears Do you my wailing better?&quot.The Toad and &quot. the Hopping back : old toad rolled her tearless eyes with great satisfaction. with white &quot. the ugly toad mother sought to please the boy articles. she &quot. Ermine border ! Hin-hin. said within her breast. why &quot. Not knowing that the syllables of a Dakota s cry are the names of loved ones gone. The human child has heard 125 and seen his . mother. doe-skin ! ! Hin-hin.My asked son. &quot.

cannot keep him longer. of the He had heard baby stolen long ago. spied the boy.tell me one thing.&quot.&quot.Old Indian Legends real mother. I Oh. loose hair sits every day on a among the tall reeds. fear. looking at her pudgy : children.&quot. wading in the deep waters. &quot. marshy island hid But he is not alone. me why my all little brothers and sisters are unlike me.The eldest is always best. Thus the wild boy with the long. The big. ugly toad. Always at his feet hops a little toad brother. 126 . said &quot. her stolen human When by chance &quot. Very closely watched the old toad mother son. Mother. no.&quot. This reply quieted the boy for a while. he started off alone. saying : Do not come back without your big brother.&quot. she shoved out one of her own children after him. One day an Indian hunter. went on the Tell child voice. I cannot give away the I pretty creature I have taught to call me mother 66 all these many winters.

I saw among &quot. 127 . our &quot. unhappy father and mother is T he. the tall reeds a black-haired boy at play ! shouted he to the people. the wild rice. cried the mother. the &quot. boy ! Quickly he led them to the lake. the Boy the hunter to &quot. while In silence the hunter stood the happy father and mother caressed their baby boy grown tall.The Toad and &quot.Tis unawares. he! tis he!&quot. This is he &quot. for she knew him. Peeping through he pointed with unsteady all finger toward the boy playing &quot. ! murmured himself as he ran to his wigwam. At once cried out. aside.




a wood-child cried the While the hunters were questioning whether or no they should carry it home. wrapped in soft brown buckskins. The huntsmen who were one passing nigh heard and halted. little baby. in both his hands a tiny &quot. ! up &quot. ! 131 . His voice is strong &quot. said one. he dropped Hunhe denly exclaiming out of sight. through the growth of Sud green with just a head above it all. Oh ho. cautious strides.IYA. ! men. &quot. The tallest among them hastened toward the high grass with long. In another instant he held &quot. the wee Indian baby kept up his little howl. for they were hunting along the wooded river bottom where this babe was found. He waded &quot. THE CAMP-EATER FROM the tall grass came the voice of a crying babe.

At times &quot. chieftain. &quot. is to be ! &quot. This babe in his daughter s lap. the people that I this 132 give a feast and dance day for the naming of . listening the queer infant story. feared some bad spirit hid in the small ! child to cheat them by and it by. whispered a superstitious fellow. . she replied. smiling. she smoothed the long black hair fringing his round &quot. Pleased with the child. it sounds like an old man s voice who &quot.Tell brown face.&quot.Old Indian Legend* &quot. Let us take to our wise . your little son &quot.How! how!&quot. &quot. father. Yes. Then rising. he took the in his strong arms gently he laid the black-eyed &quot. at length they said and the moment they the strange started toward the camp ground s wood-child ceased to cry. Beside the chieftain teepee waited the hunters while the the child. said he. tall man entered with nodded the kind-faced to chieftain.

It &quot. &quot. cried he in a loud voice to the village people. 66 A feast ! a dance for the naming of the chieftain s grandchild!&quot.What? what?&quot.&quot. asked they in great surprise. would be cowardly to leave a baby in the wild wood where prowl the hungry wolves answered an elderly man. catch the words of the There was a momentary silence among the people while they listened to the ringing 133 . daughter s little bade the chief In the meanwhile among the men wait ing by the entrance way. holding a hand to the ear to crier. ! ! us not be overcautious.lya. one said in a low voice &quot. ! The tall man now came out of the chief sent tain s teepee. No no Let &quot. the Camp-Eater son/ my tain. : I have heard that bad spirits come as little children into a camp which they mean to destroy. With a word he them to their dwellings half running with joy.

Beside their eager parents they skipped along toward the green dance house. with long tinkling metal fringes.Old Indian Legends voice of the ground. a temporary shadehouse of green leaves they were to dance The children in deerskins and and feast. just little Here underneath like their elders. laugh man ing babble among the cone-shaped teepees. the proud chieftain rose . the people 134 were assembled. strode in small numbers toward the center of the round camp ground. grand They were happy its to attend the feast and dance for naming. To and fro hurried the women. paints. walking in the center Then broke forth a rippling. s All were glad to hear of the chieftain son. Men in braids loose deerskins. were jolly men and women. Here seated in a large circle. With excited fingers they twisted their hair into glossy and painted their cheeks with bright red paint. handsome in their gala-day dress.

The proud chieftain rose with the little baby in his arms .


The tain. The Not a hum of voices was hushed. son. &quot. 135 Then the drum- . His name is is Chaske. The singers burst forth in a lively tune. At once the drummers beat their softly and slowly drum while chosen singers hummed together to find the common pitch. the Camp-Eater with the noisy little baby in his arms. He wears the of title of the eldest In honor Chaske the chieftain ! gives this feast and dance These are the his words of him you see holding a baby in arms. listening to the words of the chieftain.&quot. crier came forward to greet the chief then bent attentively over the small babe.lya. When &quot.Yes! Yes! Hinnu! How!&quot. The beat of the drum grew louder and faster. came from the the circle. tinkling of a metal fringe broke the silence. he paused the : crier spoke aloud to the people This woodland child s chieftain adopted by the eldest daughter.

Then came the hour of feasting. Proud of her one. her ear heard the far-off hum of many 136 voices. Amid faint the quiet of the night. Gradually a deep quiet stole over the camp ground. both young and old. asleep with a gaping little mouth. she watched over him asleep in her lap. The sound of murmuring people was in the . still. as one by one the people fell into pleasant dreams.Old Indian Legends beats subsided of rhythm and faintly marked the the singing. Within her father the little s teepee sat chieftain s daughter. Here and there bounced up men and women. Now all the village was Alone sat the beautiful young mother watching the babe in her lap. They danced and sang with merry light hearts. Late into the night the air of the camp ground was alive with the laughing voices of women and the singing in unison of young men.

tell. she wondered. 137 &quot. my daughter! &quot. his ear was ever alert. springing to his feet. Though asleep. Oh the sound of many voices comes &quot. &quot.lya. answered the chief tain. he listened for strange sounds. the air. The sound of voices grew larger and I nearer. ! exclaimed . Father ! rise ! hear the coming of I some not a tribe. Camp-Eater Upward she glanced at the smoke hole of the wigwam and saw a bright star Spirits in the peeping down upon her. Yes. can Rise and see ! whispered the young woman. ! up from the earth about me the young mother. Yet there was no sign to fine small tell her of their nearness. &quot. Returning he said My daughter. I hear &quot.&quot. air above?&quot. Hostile or friendly &quot. : nothing and see no sign of evil nigh. Thus rushing out into the open. With an eagle eye he scanned the camp ground for some sign.

Late into the night the air of the camp ground was alive with the laughing voices of women and the singing in unison of young men. the little Within her father daughter. Then came the hour old. she watched over him asleep in her lap. both young beats subsided and They danced and sang with merry light hearts. as one by one the people fell into pleasant dreams. The in sound of murmuring people was the . of feasting.Old Indian Legends and faintly marked the rhythm of the singing. Here and there bounced up men and women. asleep with a gaping little mouth. her ear heard the far-off hum of many voices. still. Now all the village was Alone sat the beautiful young mother watching the babe in her lap. s teepee sat of chieftain s Proud her one. Amid faint the quiet of the night. Gradually a deep quiet stole over the camp ground.

lya. Returning he said My daughter. answered the chief tain. The sound of voices grew larger and hear the coming of I can Hostile or friendly ! nearer. she wondered. air above?&quot. air. &quot. : nothing and see no sign of evil nigh. his ear was ever alert. Thus rushing out into the open. &quot. ! exclaimed young mother. Yes. springing to his feet.&quot. he listened for strange sounds. With an eagle eye he scanned the camp ground for some sign. I hear &quot. 66 Oh the sound of many voices comes ! up from the earth about me the &quot. my daughter! &quot. tell. Rise and see &quot. Father ! rise I some not tribe. Yet there was no sign to fine small tell her of their nearness. 137 . ! whispered the young woman. Though asleep. the Camf)-Eater Upward she glanced at the smoke hole of the wigwam and saw a bright star ^ Spirits in the peeping down upon her.

said the chieftain. listen spirit and tell me if this child is an &quot.We open he whispered to the frightened young woman the &quot.Old Indian Legends Bending low over her babe she gave ear to the ground. Mother. &quot. Out in the leading them into the night. each in turn heard the voices of a great camp. has of come in to guise a babe. must go away. these were the sounds they heard. the camp-eater. The singing of men and women. the beat ing of the drum. &quot. ! she cried within her heart as she slipped him gently from her lap to the ground. Placing an ear close to the open baby mouth. the chieftain and his wife. : lya. Horrified was she to find the mysterious sound came out of the open mouth 66 of her sleeping child ! Why so unlike other babes &quot. the rattling of deer-hoofs strung like bells on a string. 138 Had you gone . evil come to destroy our camp ! she whispered loud.&quot.

he will swallow the whole tribe with one : If ! Come. He is a giant with He cannot tight.lya. off the morning sun arose. Thus creeping from teepee to teepee a At mid secret alarm signal was given. When awoke. we must flee with our people. he threw his baby form in a hot rage. Camp-Eater have his jumped out into own shape and would have devoured he would our camp. the babe Seeing himself deserted. night the teepees were gone and there was left no sign of the village save heaps of So quietly had the people dead ashes. ling legs. run. closer to the woman. he whispered hideous gulp he wakes now.&quot. Then moving &quot. their folded tent poles wigwams and bundled their that they slipped away unheard by the sleeping lya babe.&quot. 139 . for he is spind cannot powerful only in the night with his tricks. We are safe as soon as He day breaks. the sleep.

when he spied them encamped beyond a river. body toppled to and fro. ! strove to wiggle his slender legs beneath his giant form. his huge side. by the name 140 . perspiration beading his brow he ! hin &quot. he followed in the trail of the fleeing people. their Though with every move he came dangerously nigh to falling. to see lya made with anger. light ! day shouted the brave ones who were terror-struck the night before &quot. Such spindle legs cannot stand to fight by &quot. &quot.Old Indian Legends Wearing his own ugly shape. By some unknown cunning he swam the river and sought his teepees. &quot.lya. I shall eat &quot. you in the sight of a noon day sun ! cried lya in his vain rage. Ha ! ha &quot.&quot. from side to on a pair of thin legs far too small for burden. &quot. ! laughed foolish all the village people &quot. way toward the Hin With he grunted and growled.

the Camp-Eater Warriors with long knives rushed forth and slew the camp-eater.lya. Thus lya was killed . 141 . ! said these strange people. Lo ! there rose out of the giant a whole : Indian tribe their camp ground. &quot. and no more are the camp grounds up in danger of being swallowed in a single night time. their tee pees in a large circle. and the people laugh ing and dancing. We are glad to be free &quot.




beware of Iktomi let ! Do not him trap.MANSTIN.&quot. With these words of caution to the bent old rabbit grandmother with whom he had lived since he was a tiny babe. but very kind-hearted. Stamping a moccasined foot as he drew on his buckskin leggins. the shrieking of a human he ejaculated. he said &quot. pointing his long ears toward the direction of the sound ! Wan &quot. &quot. . He was child.Wan! that is the work 145 of cruel Double- . THE RABBIT MANSTIN was an adventurous brave. Manstin started off toward the north. I am you into some cunning going to the North country on lure a long hunt. : Grandmother. scarce over the great high hills when he heard &quot.

Then Manstin took the little brown baby and hurried Double-Face. he watched black-haired little baby he held in strong arm. Manstin ran up the front last hill and lo ! in the ravine beyond head stood the terrible monster with a face in and one in the back of his ! This brown giant was without clothes save for a wild-cat-skin about his loins. ear of Now an arrow stuck above the It was a poisoned arrow. Quickly Manstin jumped behind a large sage bush on the brow of the hill. With the his a wicked gleaming eye. &quot.Old Indian Legends Face. He bent his bow and the sinewy string twanged. torturing helpless creatures ! Muttering indistinct words. A-boo ! Aboo ! and at the same time he switched the naked baby with a thorny wild-rose bush. 146 . Shameless coward! he delights in &quot. an In a laughing voice he Indian mother s lullaby. and the giant fell dead. hummed &quot.

&quot. . I am going to the North Country on a long hunt &quot.


the Rabbit away from the ravine.&quot. I Manstin. a slit With a upper 147 forefinger he traced . the kind-hearted. They feared lest it was Doubleand Face come in a new guise to torture them. It was the teepee of the stolen baby and the mourners were broken parents. grown man. That night a strange thing happened. Soon he came to a teepee from whence loud wailing voices broke. in the lip and when on the . their The said: rabbit &quot. its heart When gallant Manstin returned the child to the eager arms of the mother there came a sudden terror into the eyes of both the Dakotas.I understood fear am Do Manstin.Maristin. am your not fear. the noted huntsman. With his feet placed gently yet firmly upon the tiny toes of the he drew upward by each small hand the sleeping child till he was a fulllittle child. While the father and mother slept. Manstin took the wee baby. friend.

to help each other/ said Mans tin. so &quot. a the loosely drawn exclaimed Manstin.Hun-he!&quot. His alert eye caught sight of a rawhide rope for a long hunt. to carry from its uttermost extremes &quot.Old Indian Legends morrow the man and woman awoke they could not distinguish their own son from much alike were the braves. Upon leaving his friend. staked to the water s brink. bending 148 over the freshly made footprints in the . one s slightest wish for the other so!&quot. ! &quot. ear.The earth is our common Manstin. Henceforth we are friends. which led the dis into away toward a small round hut in The ground was trodden tance. &quot. deep groove beneath rawhide rope. &quot.Ho! Be it answered the newly made man. Manstin hurried away toward the North country whither he was bound Suddenly he came upon the edge of a wide brook. shaking a right hand in farewell.

Pray. was old enough &quot. felt He heard of the presence some &quot. An old toothless grandfather.A man is s foot prints ! he said to himself.How. At once became fixed upon the solitary dwelling and hither he followed his curi eyes osity. Grandfather. He the was not deaf however. Quietly he lifted the door-flap and entered in. &quot. all am Manstin. A blind man lives in yonder hut which he comes by This rope his guide water!&quot. grandchild. a real blind man s rope. . speak your name &quot. entrance and stranger. upon the ground. &quot. ! &quot. blind sat and shaky with age.&quot. I rabbit. how ! I ! you. for his daily all surmised Mans tin. the fiabbit moist bank of the brook. he mumbled.&quot. to be grandparent to every living thing. iar contrivances his who knew the pecul of the people.Mans tin. answered with the the while looking curious eyes about the 149 wigwam. for he cannot see &quot.

My poles?&quot. to the one on his into the forest.&quot. grandchild. bent man pulled at &quot. your eyes your luxury you would be unhappy without the old them ! man 150 replied. My ! &quot. I am blind and can not go on a hunt. my are days. .Old Indian Legends &quot. &quot. he asked. my fire. I wish I lived in such sure luxury pole.Grandfather. me these magic bags of choicest Then the old. This leads ! and this. Grandfather.&quot.&quot. what is it so tightly packed in all these buckskin bags placed against the tent &quot. grandchild. Hence a kind Maker has given meat and venison. and this takes me where I feel about for dry sticks for &quot. a rope which lay by his right hand. turning &quot. those are dried buffalo These are magic bags which never grow empty. foods. would lean back against a tent and with crossed feet I would smoke ! I sweet willow bark the rest of sighed Manstin. left.&quot. me to the brook where I drink said he.

Manstin grew thirsty. leaning lazily against the tent For a short time it was a most pole. At once Manstin took out both and the old his eyes man put them on Rejoicing.& the Rabbit &quot. I would give you &quot. ! cried Manstin. for it had been many long moons since he had tasted such good food. pleasant pastime to smoke willow bark and to eat from the magic bags. his the old grandfather started away with young eyes while the blind rabbit filled his dream pipe. but there was no water in the small dwelling. He was full of glee. Taking one of the rawhide ropes he started toward the brook to quench his thirst. Hence ! How forth you are at home here in my ! stead. Take out your eyes and give them to me. Arise. you have said it. Thus he skipped confidently along jerking the old weather151 . my two eyes for your place &quot. He was young and unwilling to trudge slowly in the old man s footpath. Grandfather.

I go for bravely tried the other rope. The sun had set and the night air was chilly. Soon he stumbled upon thickly strewn dry willow sticks. ! rawhide rope which led into the forest. bank he vainly tried at last he chanced upon the old stake and the deeply worn footpath. Hin &quot. but there was no fire-wood in the &quot. Eagerly with both hands he gathered the wood into his out152 . following the some fire-wood &quot. dwelling. En ! En &quot. till ally amid stream. he crawled more cautiously on all fours to his wig wam door. ! murmured Manstin and &quot. Dripping with his recent disgusted plunge he sat with chattering teeth within his unfired wigwam. Exhausted and inwardly with his mishaps. &quot. ! he grunted kicking frantic All along the slippery to climb.Old Indian Legends eaten rawhide spasmodically till all of a sudden it gave way and Manstin fell head long into the water. he said.

twittered to help Not even a night bird him out of his predica ment. the Rabbit spread blanket. Friend. Mans tin was naturally an he had a large heap. &quot. my old friend. some tangled wood where he Manstin let go his bundle and began to lament having given away his two eyes. the wood! he groaned. With a bold random.Maristin. Hin ! ! There was none. &quot. Then paus ing a moment. he tied two opposite ends of blanket together and lifted the bundle of wood upon his back. he made a start at He fell into was held fast. he set his fan-like ears to catch any sound of approaching footsteps. face. I have need of you ! The oak tree grandfather has 153 . but alas ! When he end of had unconsciously dropped the the rope and now he was lost in hin &quot. energetic fellow.

eyes.&quot. Here Manstin. The old grandfather crept into his wigwam. but since I am old and feeble I much bags ! prefer &quot. Scarcely had he spoken of voices when the sound was audible on the outer edge of the forest. Nearer and louder grew the voices one was the clear flute tones of a young brave and the other the tremulous squeaks of an old grandfather. my eyes and I am lost in the woods ! he cried with his lips close to the earth. take back your old said the man. I knew you would not be con wanted you to learn have had pleasure seeing I tent in my stead. &quot. It was Manstin and the s friend with the Earth &quot. but your lesson. my own teepee and my magic Thus talking the three returned to the hut. I with your eyes and trying your bow and arrows. Ear old grandfather.Old Indian Legends gone off with &quot. which is often 154 mistaken for a .

tree by little Indian girls and Manstin. with his into his head own bright eyes fitted to again. the Rabbit mere oak boys. 155 . went on happily hunt in the North country.Maristin.



ONCE seven
people went out to


the Ashes, the Fire, the


the Grasshopper, the Dragon Fly, the Fish,

and the Turtle.

As they were


waving their fists in violent a wind came and blew the Ashes

cried the others, away. "Ho! not fight, this one






went on running


make war


They descended a deep
The Fire

valley, the Fire going foremost until they


to a river.




and was gone.



hooted the


could not fight, this one


Therefore the
quickly to
great wood.

went on the more



They came



While they were going through

&quot. the Bladder was heard to sneer and to &quot. He blew his 160 . brothers. make The Grasshopper with his cousin. the louder he cried. and the mire was very deep. for he loved his cousin dearly.this one could not and was the remaining warriors would not fight. say. As they waded through the mud. ! The Dragon Fly went on. till his body shook with great violence. went foremost. He fell ! You see nothing said the four. weeping for his cousin. You see me. Still turn back. He would not be comforted. The four went boldly on to war. off &quot. apple pricked him.&quot. He ! you should brothers. The more he grieved. the Grasshopper them wept.Old Indian Legends it. I cannot go &quot. ! and he pulled He crawled upon a log and s legs stuck. the Dragon Fly. and the thorn through the &quot. They reached a marshy place. above these.&quot. tree-tops . With these words he went up rise ward among the branches this!&quot.

The Warlike Seven red swollen nose with a loud noise so that his head came fallen off his slender neck. hi pi &quot. Ho ! exclaimed the people of this round village of teepees. . lash &quot. these people were not warriors!&quot. .&quot. : .&quot. &quot.let us go on to make war. &quot. Neither of the warriors carried weapons with them. ing his tail impatiently. is. and he was upon the grass. &quot. Again the Fish said 161 : Shu &quot. . ! Wan ! what ? what ? &quot. With a pecul iar omission of syllables. he said. .Who are these little ones? What do they seek?&quot. &quot. . &quot. &quot. he said Shu &quot. to a camp ground. Thus the Fish and the Turtle came large &quot. hi pi ! Everywhere stood young and old with a . &quot. The Fish was spokesman.Come!&quot.You see how it said the Fish. clamored eager voices of men and women. and their unimposing stature misled the curious people.

trouble.Old Indian Legends palm to an ear. and If &quot. I have never been so angered ! said the Fish. witty old &quot. ! laughed the village folk. he was always in the midst of it. We &quot. for &quot. ! Zuya unhipi &quot. said: &quot.&quot.We The Turtle shall 162 in a whispered reply die!&quot. They do not know Let us build a &quot. Let us ! the silly pair ! They can do nothing fire &quot. stricken glum. Still no one guessed what the Fish had mumbled ! From the bewildered crowd &quot. He. his mischievous This ! little strange to man says. listen ! he palms where there was any trouble brewing. come make war kill Uun ! resented the people.&quot. &quot. &quot. boil them both ! you put us on there will be to boil. &quot.&quot. And &quot. the meaning of the phrase. Ho ho &quot. rubbing together. Iktomi came forward. said the Fish.We shall see. . shouted. so they made a fire. suddenly &quot.

He blew the water all over the people .


fly. Toward the center dived. He blew all over the people. Oh. muddy water and drown ran with them. many were burned and Screaming with pain. &quot. whooped the Fish.The Warlike Seven When mouth that a pair of strong hands lifted the Fish over the sputtering water. Others exclaimed: ? &quot. the water &quot. sang out. waving a hand This is where thither with fin The Fish swam hither and such frolicsome darts that his back made the water &quot. they said. live!&quot. them ! Instantly they They large threw the Fish and the Turtle into the lake. they ran away.E han!&quot. so could not see. &quot. he put his downward. up out I at the crowd. Whssh &quot. this is where 163 I live ! . what shall we do with these dread &quot.Let us carry them to the lake of &quot. ! he said. of the water and. ful ones &quot. of the lake the Turtle There he peeped &quot.

and lya drank all day at the lake till his belly was like the earth. look ing at the concave within arm s reach. He brought lya. &quot. ing this the people cried greatly. 164 . So deep was the water in the Eater s stomach that the surface of the swallowed lake almost touched the sky. and the water falling out drowned those people of the village. the Eater. the Eater.&quot. said Iktomi. and lya said &quot. Oh. He struck his knife upward in the Eater s &quot. : They are not in me.this &quot. will be our un Then a wise shall chief said &quot. what have we done &quot. the great lya he was looking skyward. : lya. ! said the frightened people. come and swallow the lake ! So one went running. Iktomi wading in the lake had been swal Within lowed like a gnat in the water. doing.&quot. Then the Fish and the Turtle dived into the mud Hear .Old Indian Legends &quot. go that way.&quot.I will stomach.

the Fish and the Turtle came They went home painted singers. the great water fell into its to bed.The Warlike Seven Now when own the shore. victors and loud-voiced 165 .





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