Moses Hendricks, Mandeville.
Once the times was very hard. So Anansi had a wife an' six children dependent on him; wherever he goes he gets something, so he gets seven plantains, one apiece. His wife said to him, "Where is yours?" Said 'he mustn't mind him; when they cook
it, each one mus' give him piece-piece. At the end he got more than anyone 'cause he got seven pieces.
He went out another day in search of food and he saw a calabash tree with one calabash on it, an' he look at it an' said, "My! there's a han'some packey!" The packey say, "I han'some an' I can do han'some work." He said, "Do it let I see!" Packey put a table before him full of nice eatables; when he eat to his satisfaction, packey shut up everything.
He took the packey home with him an' he shut it up in his loft over-head. Every day he hide from the family an' go up there have his good feed an' whatever little rubbish he bring in, he give it to them. His wife an' children watch him an' fin' what he have. After he was gone out, they play the same game--"What a han'some packey!"--"I han'some an' can do han'some work."--"Do it let we see!"--They carelessly let the packey drop from them an' crack. When Anansi go home, go to his feed, say, "What a han'some packey!" packey don't give him any answer. He find that something was wrong.
Went out another day an' saw another packey (which was the same packey), says, "There's a han'some packey!" Packey said, "I han'some an' can do han'some work." He said, "Do it let I see!" Packey took out a cow-whip an' give him a handsome flogging. He t'ought of having a good joke on the family an' pick it an' hung it up in the loft upon the same place. So the wife an' chil'ren went to this packey again, expecting the same thing; so the wife said, "There's a han'some packey!" Packey said, "I han'some an' I can do han'some work!" The six chil'ren were around the packey. The wife said, "Do it let we see!" and the packey out with the, cow-whip an' fall in to lash them right an' left. Some tumble down, some get into the shingle hide themselves all around in the crevice. Jack man dora! That's the reason why you see Anansi live in the crevice!
William Forbes, Dry River, Cock-pit country.
Anansi was cutting a ground 'gainst a ribber-side an' he had a hatchet an' de hatchet get 'way from him into de sea. An' him pull off him clo'es go dive fe de hatchet an' in'tead of fin' de hatchet him fin' a knife an' fo'k. An' when him come home, he put knife an' fo'k 'pon table an' say, "Lay out, knife an' fo'k, lay out!" An' it lay out anyt'ing he ax fe. Well, den, him get a party, lots of people into de house to show dem what knife an' fo'k can
do. An' after de people come into de house, he put dem knife an' fo'k on de table an' say, "Lay out, me knife an' fo'k, lay out!" An' all de people eat.
An' ants mak nest 'pon de knife an' fo'k now. Well, den, nex' day mo'ning when he tak out knife an' fo'k, say, "Lay out, me knife an' fo' kill not'ing at all come out. It spoil! Well, him go back to de ribber-side wid anudder hatchet an' was chopping, fling away in de sea. An' after him dive, dive an' fin' a horse-whip in de sea. An' as he go home say, "Lay out, horse-whip, lay out mak a eat!" An' de horse-whip lay out an' flog him, wattle him well till he holla.
An' he only sen' back fe all doze people who eat wid de knife an' fo'k, say he going to mak a great dinner an' all de people mus' come. An' when de people dem come, he put dem into de house an' tak out his chil'ren an' wife, put a kitchen. An' put de horse-whip on de table an' lock up de windeh, say if do' an windeh open can not get dinner. An' he tell de horse-whip mus' lay out mak dem eat. An' de horse-whip flog dem all till dey break down de house.
Anansi is a man nobody can fool him--only Brar Dead!"