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73. RABBIT RIDES WOLF (61, 71)


An old woman lived in a certain place with her daughter whom Rabbit wanted to marry. One time he visited them and assured them that be had some property, including a riding horse, and he said, "Some day I will ride him past."

Then he found Wolf and said to him, "My friend, there is to be a big council up here and I want to go but I am unable to walk." Wolf answered, "Get on my back and I will carry you." Rabbit wanted to ride by the house where that girl lived so as to show her and her mother that he did have a horse. After he had mounted he said, "I might falloff. I could hold on better if I had a bridle." But after the bridle was put on he said, "That does not quite suit me. It would be better if I had a saddle blanket." After he had gotten that he continued, "It is not quite right yet. It would be better if I had a saddle." And a saddle was prepared for him. "I am not yet quite, suited," said Rabbit. "It would be better if I had spurs." So he made some spurs out of sand burs (oklafō'na). Then he mounted and they set out, passing by the house where the girl lived. Rabbit then told Wolf that they wanted all who liked fresh meat to come up. Afterwards he rode on down to a thicket and said to Wolf, "The people are gathered right down below. I will fasten you here." After he had done so he went on out of sight and began making a noise by drumming on a log. Then he came back to Wolf and said, "I made a mistake. They said to bring up everyone who eats fresh meat and we will kill them." The Wolf was terribly frightened when he heard that and broke his halter, and away he went out of sight.

When Wolf found how he had been fooled he tried to find Rabbit to get even with him and by and by he discovered him in a peach tree. He ran up to him, saying, "I have been wanting to find you for some time, and now I have done so." Upon hearing this Rabbit looked off toward an old house which could be seen from there and called, "Here is the one you have always wanted." The Wolf became frightened again and ran off.

p. 67

Sometime later Wolf came upon Rabbit once more but Rabbit discovered him first and running up to a tree which was bent over, said, "My friend, I am holding up this tree because if it falls the earth will pass away. Come and hold it while I go for help. It is tiresome." So Wolf took Rabbit's place and held up the tree until he got tired, while Rabbit escaped.

Next: 74. Rabbit Rides Wolf (Third Version)