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82. The Three Dogs.

a. Boy and Witch Woman.

Thomas White, Maroon Town.

Olden time it was a young man an' him brudder. Dem two of 'em was bred up on a property penning cow. Eb'ry morning dat dey wan' to pen, carry dem breakfas' an' carry dem fire. An' one morning dat dem going, 'em carry food but dey didn' carry no fire. An' dem pen cow until twelve o'clock in de day an' de smaller one feel hungry. He say, "Brar, me hungry! how we gwine to get fire?" An' dey look 'pon a hill-side,--jus 'as out deh, an' see a smoke an' de smaller one go look fe fire. An' he go right up de hill an' see a big open house; lady in open kitchen. An' she was Old Witch. An' he frighten an' come back. So now de bigger brudder go, name of William. An' as he go up, stop behin' one big dry 'tump, stan' up deh an' look what de Ol' Witch do. An' dis Ol' Witch got on a pot on fire, an' tek off de pot an' him dish out all vessels right t'ru, de boy don' see no pickney in kitchen, only de Ol' Witch. An' Ol' Witch knock on side, pon pon pon, an' all pickney come out, twenty big man and small children, women and boy pickney. An' dey all sit down deh an' eat. When dey done, who fe smoke de pipe dem smoke. An' Ol' Witch get up an' knock, pon pon, an' all de chil'ren go up in him back.

An' den de boy call to him now, say, "Mawnin', Nana!" She frightened and ask if he been deh long time an' he say, "No, jus' come up to beg fe fire." An' she says, "Tek fire, but don' tek me fire-stick; an' de boy tu'n back an' break a piece o' rotten wood an' hol' it 'gainst de steam of de fire an' ketch de rotten wood. An' Ol' Witch say to him, "Boy, you jus' a good as me!" Boy said, "No, Nana, I'm not so good!" An' de boy go down in cow-pen an' when in de height of penning up de cow, tell de smaller brudder not to mek up fire, pen de cow an' go home quick quick. An' dis bigger brudder was a witch himself an' know all about what come after him, an' when he go home, go inside de house, fawn sick.

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An in a quick time de Ol' Witch was upon dem. An' she go in de yard, say, anyone as would knock de packey off 'im head she would tek for a husband. De smaller brudder fling an' couldn't knock off de packey. De Ol' Witch woman call to William mamma if she don' have a bigger son. "Yes, but he have fever in bed, kyan't come out." An' de Ol' Witch never cease till William have to come out. As he come out, he pick up a little trash an' knock off de packey. Ol' Witch say, "Yes, you is my husban'!"

An' him sleep at William house de night; nex' mo'ning dem gwine to go 'way. In do night, when William an' de wife gone to bed, part of de light when William was in dead sleep, de Ol' Witch tek one razor to cut William t'roat. An' William have t'ree dog, one name Blum-blum, one name Sinde, one name Dido. An' when de Ol' Witch tek de razor, Blum-blum grumble an' de razor mout' tu'n over. William wake. He drop asleep again, Ol' Witch raise up,

Sharp-en me ra-zor, Sharp-en me ra-zor, shar come schwee, sho am schwee!

Sinde grumble an' razor mout' tu'n over. An' drop asleep again, an' when de Ol' Witch raise up again, Dido grumble an' de razor mout' tu'n over.

Daylight a mo'ning, get up William mamma, boil coffee, give dem chocolate. William an' wife gwine away now, an' he tell him mudder chain dem t'ree dog dey got, Blum-blum, Sinde, Dido; an' him get a big white basin an' he set de basin jus' at de hall middle, an' him tell de mudder dat as soon as see de basin boil up in blood, him mus' let go de t'ree dogs. An' he tell good-by, gwine now in witch country. Travel an' travel till dem come to clean common. An' he fling a marble so far, de place wha' de marble stop is one apple-tree grow, had one apple quite in de branch top. An' 'he said, 'My dear William, I ask you kindly if you will climb dis tree an' pick dis apple fo' me." When William go up in de apple-tree, Ol' Witch says to William, "Hah! I tell you I got you t'-day! for de place wha' you see me knock out pickney out o' me skin, you wi' have to tell me t'-day." William says, "Yes, I know about dat long time, for it will be 'iron cut iron' to-day!" For oftentimes him an' fader go to wood an' him saw fader fail a green tree an' leave a dry one. As Ol' Witch got William on apple-tree, Ol' Witch knock out ten axe an' ten axe-men, gwine fall de tree. Den William start song,--

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Blum-blum, Sin-de, Di-do di-i-i-i-i-i. Blum-blum, Sin-de, Di-do.

Den de Ol' Witch sing,

Chin, fal-lah, fal-lah, Chin, fal-lah, fal-lah, Chin, fal-lah, fal-lah, Chin.

When de tree goin' to fall, William said, "Bear me up, me good tree! Many time me fader fell green tree, leave dry one." De witch knock out twenty axe-men, t'irty axe-men.

"Blum-blum, Sinde, Dido,
Um um eh o,
Blum-blum, Sinde, Dido!"

Den de Ol' Witch sing,

"Chin fallah fallah, chin fallah fallah."

When de tree goin' to fall, William said, "Bear me up, me good tree; many time me fader fell green tree, leave dry one." De Witch knock out twenty axe-men, t'irty axe-men.

"Blum-blum, Sinde, Dido-o-o!"

Den de Ol' Witch sing,

"Chin fallah fallah, chin fallah fallah."

While William in de tree, white basin boil up wid blood. An' William got a deaf-ears mamma. An' de nex' neighbor come in an' chattin' wid William mudder de whole day; an' in height of basin boil over an' run a stream slap on de frock of de ol' lady chattin' in de kitchen. When de ol' lady see de blood hot, she cut de chain of Blum-blum an' Sinde. Dido cut de chain himself, an' de t'ree dog gallop 'way. When William up tree see de t'ree dog coming, he only shake his hand an' de t'ree dog drop. An' de t'ree dog wait till de Ol' Witch get forty axe-man round de tree. In de height of cutting de tree, de t'ree dog destroy ev'ry one of dem an' kill de Ol' Witch herself.

An' William come down off de tree an' tek his machete an' scatter Ol' Witch over de whole earth, an' everywhere you go you can see dat bad cowitch is not'ing else den de pieces of de Ol' Witch.

Jack man dory, choose now!

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b. Lucy and Janet.

Martha Roe, Harmony Hall, Cock-pit country.

Once a woman have two daughter. Lucy an' Janet were de two girl name. She sen' dem far to school. Der is Ol' Witch live along de road. An' she had t'ree dog, one name Dick, one name Dandy, an' one name Bellamo. August, Lucy was going home, going spend time wid her mamma, an' de mudder has to sen' dose t'ree dog to go carry her home. An' all her breakfas' fe her an' t'ree dog she put all togedder. Lucy were kind. When Lucy catch to her breakfas', she an' de t'ree dog eat togedder; she never consider dem as dog, she take dem as frien'. So when she catch half-way, de t'ree dog stop back an' one big Ol' Witch man come out to destroy Lucy. Dat time, de dog leave her quite back; now she gwine call dem:

"Yah! Bellamo, Dick an' Dandy,
Yah! Bellamo, yo!"

De t'ree dog run in an' dem tear up de Ol' Witch an' kill him. So ev'ry time Lucy come, dose t'ree dog guide her to her mamma go an' spen' August, an' de t'ree of dem carry her back to her school-missus place.

Well, Christmas, Janet a go. De dog come to carry home Janet. When dey come, she say, "I wonder what you all doin' so long!" an' begin to quarrel. When she ketch fe to eat breakfas', she eat her breakfas' first den she divide what left give de t'ree dog. So as she started on, de dog dem start back de same as usual. When de Ol' Witch man come out, going call de dog now. And say, (harshly)

"Yah! Bellamo, Dick an' Dandy,
Yah! Bellamo, yah!"

Dog wouldn't come. An' de Ol' Witch kill dat girl t'ru her bad manner. So you fin' plenty of young people don' have manners, "Money won't take you 'round de island like civility."[1]

Next: 83. Andrew and his Sisters.