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Long ago the people (of that world) knew that there would be a great flood. Up in the north among the high mountains they

p. 3

built a great boat. When it was nearly time for the water to rise, they began to load it with much corn and they took all the different animals into the boat and a white pigeon. When everything was ready the sons of the builder of the boat and their sons came into the ship. When they were all in, they put pitch over all the cracks of the boat. The flood came. The boat floated on the water. The people that were left on the earth fled to the highest mountain to try to escape from the waters. The ones who could not get to the high mountains were all drowned and floated about on the waters of the flood. The ones who climbed the mountains were overtaken by the water and turned into rocks. Some were embracing each other, and some held one another on their laps, and there they are still just as the water overtook them. Every living thing on the earth was drowned, but the boat still floated.

When the waters went down, the boat grounded on a high place in the mountains to the north. Then they knew the waters were subsiding. The chief said to the rest, "We will send the white pigeon to see if the earth is uncovered again." The white pigeon was let out. At last he returned and told the chief, "I have seen the earth and the water has gone down. But it is a terrible thing to see. The people are all drowned and their bodies piled upon the ground." In the boat there was also a crow as white as the pigeon. They sent out the crow to look over the earth. She went out and saw the earth as the pigeon had. But she flew down to the dead bodies and began to pick out their eyes. When she came back to the boat, they knew she had done mischief. They said to her, "What is it that you have done when you were out flying over the earth? You were white and now your feathers are all black." Again they let the pigeon out to see if the earth was firm again. She went out and as she was flying she saw a flower in blossom. She picked the flower for a sign that the earth was getting firm again, and she took it back to the boat. She said to the owner of the boat, "The plants are all growing again, and I settled on the ground and did not sink into the mud. This flower is a sign of the growing of the plants." So the people on the boat were saved from the first-ending-of-the-world-by-flood.

When the people who came up out of Shipap found these people who had been saved they called them Tsauwan yabana (last year's crop people). They were yellow like last year's corn, and their hair was curled up in queues on their heads like last year's husks. (The narrator said they were the Chinese and Japanese.) They were told that there would come another destruction of the world, but it would be by fire.


2:9 Informant 1. Notes, p. 203.

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