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p. 75

13. The Raven and the Girls (Valvị´yñị-lŭ´mñịl).

 One time a company of little girls found upon the seashore a little seal. Then Raven saw them. Therefore they put the little seal under their bodies. "What is that?" — "A splinter of wood." — "Still it has whiskers." — "It is a whiskered splinter." — "Still it has eyes." — "It is a splinter with eyes." — "Still it has paws." — "It is a splinter with paws."

 Then he pushed them apart. He took the seal and brought it home. (His house-mates) skinned it, had supper, and then went to sleep. Some cooked meat was left in the kettle. The little girls (came in the night-time), ate up (the meat), then they defecated into the kettle.

 After a while the (Raven) husband awoke, and said to his wife, who was sleeping, "Eh, I am hungry! Give me some cooked (meat)." The wife, with eyes shut, stretched her hand toward the kettle and took the fæces. "Oho! it is fæces."

 The company of girls staid outside. Raven put on his clothes, and called to his wife, "Give me my wretched bow, give me my wretched arrow!" They, however, were only the fire-drill and its bow.

 Oh, the little girls fled! "Grandpa, grandpa! we shall louse you, we shall louse you!" — "Oh, what have I done to my little grand-daughters! I have frightened them!" Then they loused him. When he fell asleep, they fastened a bladder under his anus, and then wakened him. "Oh, now wake up! p. 76 You must defecate yonder on that good dry place." He obeyed and defecated. The fæces fell down into the bladder, pat, pat! He turned back toward them, and saw nothing.

 Then he came home and said to his wife, "How very strange! I defecated over yonder, but I could not see my fæces. Still they clattered down." — "Well, now, turn to this side!" And there his anus had a bladder (tied to it).

 He called again, "Here, give me my wretched bow! I will shoot them down. Give me my wretched arrow!" He visited them again. "Grandpa, grandpa, eat some diarrhœa excrement!" — "I do not want it." — "Then let us louse you!" — "Oh, what have I done to my little grand-daughters!" He threw away the bow and slept again. They loused him and made him go to sleep.

 This time they fastened over his eyes some red tassels. Then they wakened him again. "Oh, go there and look at your house!" He obeyed again. He looked upon the house, and began to cry, "Oh, oh! the house is ablaze!" His wife went out and walked around the house, but saw nothing. " Look up here! Oh, your eyes have things fastened on them!"

 Again (he grew angry, and the girls called to him,) "Grandpa, grandpa, let us louse you, let us louse you!" They loused him, and he went to sleep. Then they tattooed his face. After that they wakened him again. "Wake up, there! Have a drink of this clear water!" Then he saw in the water his own tattooed face. "I will marry p. 77 you, eh!" Still it was (no woman), but his own body and tattooed face.

 "Shall I bring my tent, eh?" Then he called out to himself, "She consents, she consents!" After that he went home. He began to break down his tent. His wife said, "What are you doing?" — "Be silent!" — "Oh, but it is only your (own) face, that is tattooed!" — "Oh, you are jealous, you are jealous!" — "Really, your face is tattooed!" — "What do you want, what do you want?"

 Oh, he carried away the flat stone (anvil), together with the stone hammer.1 Again he came and looked down. "Here you are!" Still it is his own former face. He put down the flat stone. It went under. Then the stone hammer. It also went under. "Oh, I have married a wife from the Reindeer tribe! She accepted them!" Oh, now the poles, they floated on the surface. "Those she has refused! Now the tent-cover!" It was carried down by the stream. "Now it is my turn."

 When he was in the water, his head grew giddy, and he also floated on the surface. The stream carried him down the river. "Oh, the skies are moving!" Still it was the stream that was carrying him away. "Oh, oh! the skies are swinging!" Then he was drowned.

Told by Qo´tirġịn, a Maritime Chukchee man, in the village of Mị´s·qạn, November, 1900.



p. 77

1 These are the appurtenances of the Chukchee hearth and home (cf. Vol. VII of this series, p. 188).