Across the ocean towards the south were three bodies of water. Yīmantūwiñyai went there. He saw there the red eels which never come to this world. "They will come," he thought. The bank of the lake slid out and some of the eels went out with the water. Yīmantūwiñyai himself walked along the shore and accompanied the eels until he came to the mouth of the Klamath river. There they stopped and waited for him. There at the mouth of the Klamath a TimatciLtcwe (one who stops the run of fish) lives. "You who stop the run of fish, you will go to sleep," thought Yīmantūwiñyai, "and the fish will go through without your knowledge."
Yīmantūwiñyai walked along the Klamath accompanying the eels until he came to Weitchpec, where another TimatciLtcwe lived. Yīmantūwiñyai said to him, "You will go to sleep; fish will go through without your knowledge." "They will never go on up the Klamath," thought Yīmantūwiñyai. "A mountain shall project into the water to prevent it." He went on up the Trinity. He saw that the eels were coming along.
When he got quite a way up he thought, "These eels won't go on towards the south; they will stay in the waterfall at Xaiyame." "I will go back again," he thought. "I don't want a miñkilen to eat my eels," he thought, "but if she does eat them, these eels of mine won't die. KiLtcwe may eat them without harm; the eels won't die; they will be good and many will be caught." "Ten canoes will be filled with them," he thought.
He went back again. "I will do this again; I will go back across the ocean towards the south." When he got back there he thought, "I will go again; I will take them with me." He went northward again to the mouth of the Klamath. "You will go to sleep," he thought of the TimatciLtcwe. "Your heart will go to sleep; without your knowing it the eels will go past." He walked along accompanying the eels to Weitchpec. "This is the way it will be done," thought Yīmantūwiñyai, "they won't go on; they will stay here," he thought. "They will say of me, 'He did this.' KiLtcwe will eat them without harm. My eels will not melt away. Miñkilen may eat them without harm. Ten canoes shall be filled with eels. It will be that way everywhere. It will be good," he thought.
He went back south across the ocean. "I will go again," he thought. "I want my eels." He went along the shore from the south until he came to the mouth of the Klamath. He said to the TimatciLtcwe, "You will go to sleep. My eels will go on when you go to sleep." He went on up the Klamath to Weitchpec. "Soon you will go to sleep," he said to the TimatciLtcwe. "Only one river will flow for you, my eels; this one, my river. In this my river the eels will go. They won't go east," he thought. "A mountain will project into the water in front of them. One river will flow out for you. They will go into this one," he kept thinking. "He will say of me, 'He did that way.' Now I will quit."
As he went along he looked at the eels. "They won't go into this river (Klamath)," he thought. "They will live in this river of mine even when it becomes shallow. He (the coming priest) will do this way," he thought. "He will say of me, 'He did that way;' he will do this way with the eels." Then Yīmantūwiñyai ate them where he had cooked them. "He will say of me, 'I hear he did this way.' He shall eat eels there for five days." He did not eat all of those eels. "This is the way he will do," Yīmantūwiñyai thought, "when he gets enough he will throw the remainder in the fire; with this medicine he will tell of my deeds. This way he will do for five mornings."
"When a woman is through with her period of seclusion she may eat the eels; they will not die. She may eat them if she is
hungry," he thought. Yīmantūwiñyai fished for eels thinking, "Hereafter the priest will do this way; he will say of me, 'He did that way.'" "Even if he does not catch anything, nevertheless he will talk about me." Then he took the net outside. "Tomorrow he will talk about me this way. Tomorrow I will go fishing. Everybody will fish tomorrow." Yīmantūwiñyai fished and thought to himself, "He will say of me this way he did." "A woman who has suffered miscarriage may eat them without doing harm; even if she eats them the run of eels will not disappear." "I will go back," he thought.
Then having gone back be soon came along the shore again from the south until he came to the mouth of the Klamath. There again he said to the TimatciLtcwe, "You will go to sleep, and while you sleep they will go past. "Yīmantūwiñyai was carrying along medicine in his hand while he was saying this. "He (the coming priest) will do that, and then he will eat them," thought Yīmantūwiñyai. That is why he always carries the medicine. If he eats the eels without the medicine he will be bitten by a rattlesnake. "You will not live," he thought, "this was not a good thing that you did. I wish that you may not live. Even if he does not catch any eels he must talk about me. Even then many eels will be caught. If he does not talk about me he will not live."
"I will go back," he thought. "What am I going to do? I will do this for him. This way he will eat them. If he eats, having the medicine in his hands as I have it, he will get enough. He will put the remainder in the fire with this medicine and burn it. He will not carry to the house what is left after he gets enough. This is the way he shall do; this is the way he shall eat. Ten days I will fish," thought Yīmantūwiñyai. "This way he will do," he thought. "He will say of me, 'He did this way.' I will go back. Already I have finished. All kinds of people will eat the eels. I will watch the eels. I will look at my eels. They appear good. They won't dodge away from the net. Already all kinds of people eat them, even KiLtcwe, and miñkilen. My eels won't dodge away from the net. All is good. It will be this way, nevertheless I will watch my eels; he will say of me, 'He did this way.' They will be good. Already they are good. He (the
priest) will eat this way. Everybody will eat them. I have finished. They won't dodge. Now I will go back across to the south. "
When he got back the water in which the fish lived was all gone. He made the banks of the ponds slide out. Then he came back from the south along the shore of the ocean to the mouth of the Klamath. He never ceased having the medicine in his hand. "You will go to sleep," he thought of the TimatciLtcwe. "While you sleep, they will go by. I wish something would cause your mind to melt away. They will go while that happens." Yīmantūwiñyai went along to Weitchpec. He thought concerning the TimatciLtcwe, "You will go to sleep. The eels will never go to the east. Only one river and that mine, will flow out for them. I will watch my eels."
He came up to Hupa. "Here in this valley I will watch my eels," he thought. "KiLtcwe will eat them. Even if the river becomes shallow they will live in some deep places. Many boats filled with eels shall be counted. Every one ate them. Every one has eaten my fish. Already I have done that which I was intending to do." He fished. "Now I am fishing," he thought. "He shall do this way for five mornings." He cooked it with the medicine lying in his hand. "It shall be done this way," he thought. He (Yīmantūwiñyai) ate the eels. "He will say of me, 'He did this way.' He will eat them here as I have done. When he has enough he will put the medicine in the fire. This medicine is good. He will say of me, 'He did this way.'
"Now here in this place I finish. This is the way it shall be. Not many shall say of me, 'He did that way.' Every kind of people will eat them. Even if bad people eat them I do not want that the eels shall stop coming. They will not stop. This is the way he will talk of the fish. He will eat them in this manner with the medicine. This way now I will make it for him." "Now," he said, "I am about to finish." "I am finishing for him. Now I am going home across the ocean to the south."
252:1 Told at Hupa, November 1901, by William Lewis (Kū-wī-ta) said to be the only person who knows the formula. He performs this ceremony which necessitates ten days of fasting without recompense for the good of the people.