Sacred-Texts Native American Inuit
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IT was Kulange's (pron. Koolanghee's) business to bring up and down the fishing implements, tools, and arms of the kayakers. Having no kayak of his own, he only roamed about the country. He had but one friend; and on a certain day he saw his friend engaged in opening a new grave and cutting a piece out of the dead body. He had taken a morsel of flesh and the bladder. He approached silently, and after having watched his proceeding, he asked him what he was about. The friend turned round, explaining to him, "I want it to work some witchcraft." But having thus been taken by surprise, he got ashamed and wished to make it over to Kulange, saying that he might use it advantageously any time he wanted to injure some great hunter. He informed him that he ought to dry the morsel of dead man's flesh, and put it beneath the point p. 329 of the hunter's harpoon, and that in this manner he might in less than a moment turn a clever hunter into a very poor one. The bladder he was likewise to dry, and if ever he happened to get an enemy, he was to blow it up, and, while the other was asleep, press the air out upon him. At length Kulange accepted the gift, and after making the grave up anew, they both departed. Meanwhile Kulange put by the things, intending to try them on the first occasion. About the beginning of winter one of his house-fellows had a particularly good hunt, and consequently got quite rich. Kulange at once determined whether he could put an end to his great good luck; with this view he put a bit of the flesh beneath the point of his harpoon, while the owner was sleeping, after which he sneaked silently away to his couch. On the return of the kayakers the following evening, it happened that only he on whose harpoon the bit of flesh had been concealed, was unsuccessful; and this continued from day to day until one day Kulange again took it away and cleaned the point well where it had been deposited. No sooner had this been done, than the kayaker returned tugging a large seal after him like all the rest, and he had the same good luck ever afterwards. Kulange now thought that he had sufficiently tested the magic power of the flesh, and he only awaited an opportunity to make somebody angry with him in order to try the effect of the bladder. It so happened that his daughter-in-law got offended with him, and in her wrath called him "the nasty Kulange." The next day it blew a gale from the south, and he went out to fill the bladder with air. When she was asleep in the evening, he went up beside her and let the air out upon her. At dawn she awoke with a swelling in her side, and later in the day she was swollen all over. Her husband instantly rowed away to fetch an angakok from a neighbouring place. He came back with him, and after having practised his incantations p. 330 for some time in the darkened room, he knew enough to tell that the misdeed had been done by Kulange, who immediately confessed his guilt, saying, "I certainly did it, and here are the implements given me by my friend." Having heard the whole state of the case, the bewitching objects were sunk deep in the sea; but the wicked friend was put to death.