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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Adventures of Bull turns Round


Once the camp moved, but one lodge stayed. It belonged to Wolf
Tail; and Wolf Tail's younger brother, Bull Turns Round, lived with
him. Now their father loved both his sons, but he loved the younger
one most, and when he went away with the big camp, he said to Wolf
Tail: "Take care of your young brother; he is not yet a strong
person. Watch him that nothing befalls him."

One day Wolf Tail was out hunting, while Bull Turns Round sat in
front of the lodge making arrows, and a beautiful strange bird lit
on the ground before him. Then cried one of Wolf Tail's wives, "Oh,
brother, shoot that little bird." "Don't bother me, sister,"
he replied, "I am making arrows." Again the woman said,
"Oh, brother, shoot that bird for me." Then Bull Turns
Round fitted an arrow to his bow and shot the bird, and the woman
went and picked it up and stroked her face with it, and her face
swelled up so big that her eyes and nose could not be seen. But
when Bull Turns Round had shot the bird, he went off hunting and
did not know what had happened to the woman's face.
Now when Wolf Tail came home and saw his wife's face, he said,
"What is the matter?" and his wife replied: "Your
brother has pounded me so that I cannot see. Go now and kill him."
But Wolf Tail said, "No, I love my brother; I cannot kill him."
Then his wife cried and said: "I know you do not love me; you
are glad your brother has beaten me. If you loved me, you would
go and kill him."

Then Wolf Tail went out and looked for his brother, and when he
had found him, he said: "Come, let us get some feathers. I
know where there is an eagle's nest;" and he took him to a
high cliff, which overhung the river, and on the edge of this cliff
was a dead tree, in the top of which the eagles had built their
nest. Then said Wolf Tail, "Climb up, brother, and kill the
eagles;" and when Bull Turns Round had climbed nearly to the
top, Wolf Tail called out, "I am going to push the tree over
the cliff, and you will be killed."
"Oh, brother, oh, brother, pity me; do not kill me,"
said Bull Turns Round.

"Oh, brother, oh, brother, pity me; do not kill me,"
said Bull Turns Round.
"Why did you beat my wife's face so?" said Wolf Tail.
"I didn't," cried the boy; "I don't know what you
are talking about."

"You lie," said Wolf Tail, and he pushed the tree over
the cliff. He looked over and saw his brother fall into the water,
and he did not come up again. Then Wolf Tail went home and took
down his lodge, and went to the main camp. When his father saw him
coming with only his wives, he said to him, "Where is your
younger brother?" And Wolf Tail replied: "He went hunting
and did not come back. We waited four days for him. I think the
bears must have killed him."

Now when Bull Turns Round fell into the river, he was stunned,
and the water carried him a long way down the stream and finally
lodged him on a sand shoal. Near this shoal was a lodge of Under
Water People, an old man, his wife, and two daughters. This old
man was very rich: he had great flocks of geese, swans, ducks, and
other water-fowl, and a big herd of buffalo which were tame. These
buffalo always fed nearby, and the old man called them every evening
to come and drink. But he and his family ate none of these. Their
only food was the bloodsucker. Now the old man's daughters were
swimming about in the evening, and they found Bull Turns Round lying
on the shoal, dead, and they went home and told their father, and
begged him to bring the person to life, and give him to them for
a husband. "Go, my daughters," he said, "and make
four sweat lodges, and I will bring the person." He went and
got Bull Turns Round, and when the sweat lodges were finished, the
old man took him into one of them, and when he had sprinkled water
on the hot rocks, he scraped a great quantity of sand off Bull Turns
Round. Then he took him into another lodge and did the same thing,
and when he had taken him into the fourth sweat lodge and scraped
all the sand off him, Bull Turns Round came to life and the old
man led him out and gave him to his daughters. And the old man gave
his son-in-law a new lodge and bows and arrows, and many good presents.
Then the women cooked some bloodsuckers and gave them to their
husband, but when he smelled of them he could not eat, and he threw
them in the fire. Then his wives asked him what he would eat. "Buffalo,"
he replied, "is the only meat for men."

"Oh, father!" cried the girls, running to the old man's
lodge, "our husband will not eat our food. He says buffalo
is the only meat for men."

"Go then, my daughters," said the old man, "and
tell your husband to kill a buffalo, but do not take nor break any
bones, for I will make it alive again." Then the old man called
the buffalo to come and drink and Bull Turns Round shot a fat cow
and took all the meat. And when he had roasted the tongue, he gave
each of his wives a small piece of it and they liked it, and they
roasted and ate plenty of the meat.

One day Bull Turns Round went to the old man and said, "I
mourn for my father."
"How did you come to be dead on the sand shoal?" asked
the old man. Then Bull Turns Round told what his brother had done
to him.

"Take this piece of sinew," said the old man. "Go
and see your father. When you throw this sinew on the fire, your
brother and his wife will roll, and twist up and die." Then
the old man gave him a herd of buffalo, and many dogs to pack the
lodge and other things; and Bull Turns Round took his wives, and
went to find his father.

One day, just after sunset, they came in sight of the big camp,
and they went and pitched the lodge on the top of a very high butte;
and the buffalo fed close by, and there were so many of them that
they covered the whole hill.

Now the people were starving, and some had died, for they had no
buffalo. In the morning, early, a man arose whose son had starved
to death, and when he went out and saw this lodge on the top of
the hill, and all the buffalo feeding by it, he cried out in a loud
voice and the people all came out and looked at it, and they were
afraid, for they thought it was Under Water People. Then said the
man whose son had died: "I am no longer glad to live. I will
go up to this lodge, and find out what this is." Now when he
said this, all the men grasped their bows and arrows and followed
him, and when they went up the hill, the buffalo just moved out
of their path and kept on feeding; and just as they came to the
lodge, Bull Turns Round came out, and all the people said, "Here
is the one whom we thought the bears had killed." Wolf Tail
ran up, and said, "Oh, brother, you are not dead. You went
to get feathers, but we thought you had been killed." Then
Bull Turns Round called his brother into the lodge, and he threw
the sinew on the fire; and Wolf Tail, and his wife, who was standing
outside, twisted up and died.

Then Bull Turns Round told his father all that had happened to
him; and when he learned that the people were starving, he filled
his mouth with feathers and blew them out, and the buffalo ran off
in every direction, and he said to the people, "There is food,
go chase it." Then the people were very glad, and they came
each one and gave him a present. They gave him war shirts, bows
and arrows, shields, spears, white robes, and many curious things.

Monday, May 18, 2015


Many years ago, there lived in the Ojibway encampment at the mouth of the Kaministiqua River, a beautiful young Indian maiden, beloved by all, and talented in the art of handicrafts. Many beautiful gifts were fashioned by the clever fingers of White Dove. White Dove made some lovely gifts of silver, found that summer on a trip to Silver Island. Two days before the great Indian feast of Thanksgiving, White Dove and her lover, Nanokarsi, set out to take the ornaments of silver to White Dove's grandmother, who lived a day's journey away in the foothills of the "Nor-Westers" mountain range. Taking only a light lunch for their midday meal, the young couple bid their families goodbye, promising to return in time for the great feast.
Shortly after they had finished their noon lunch, they were unpleasantly surprised by a chilling gust of wind. Immediately Nanokarsi climbed to the top of a giant pine tree and looking north saw billows of black, ominous clouds. Fearful of the storm, he urged White Dove to run as fast as her legs could carry her, but they had gone only a short distance when the storm burst upon them in all its fury!
The wind howled about them, whipping the heavy snow into enormous drifts and blinding their vision. They wandered hopelessly until nightfall. Then cold, exhausted and hungry, they laid down in the shelter of a large rock, embracing each other to share their body warmth.
The Thanksgiving Feast was at its height when the old Chief, Running Deer, solemnly announced the two had not returned and that he feared they were lost in the storm.
All the braves volunteered to go in search of them. After four days the searchers came upon the couple, still embraced, but sleeping the Great Sleep, from which there is no awakening! The braves knelt beside them and called upon Nanna Bijou, their Spirit God, to breathe new life in their bodies.
The Great Spirit told them he could not bring them back as they were now in the home of the Great Manitou, neither could he forbid the Snow Spirit to come again. Nanna Bijou did, however, the promise she would give them a sign that would forever warn them of the Snow Spirit approaching and if heeded, would bring them no harm. As the braves watched, they were amazed to see the bodies of White Dove and Nanokarsi slowly disappear into the snow and, there where they had lain, appeared two pretty little soft gray birds with striped heads!
As they flew into the air, they darted from left to right, making the snowy plumage of their breasts and under their wings and tail quite visible to the onlooker.
Where these birds come from, or where they go, no-one knows, but when you see them swirling and darting around in large flocks, take heed, for as surely as night follows day, snow is not very far away!


HORSES forever changed life on the Great Plains. They allowed tribes to hunt more buffalo than ever before. They tipped the balance of power in favor of mounted warriors. And they became prized as wealth. For Native Americans today, horses endure as an emblem of tradition and a source of pride, pageantry, and healing.

Sunday, May 10, 2015



There was once a young warrior whose bride died on the eve of their wedding. Although he had distinguished himself by his bravery and goodness, the death left the young man inconsolable.
He was unable to eat or sleep. Instead of hunting with the others, he just spent time at the grave of his bride, staring into the air.
However, one day he happened to overhear some elders speaking about the path to the spirit world. He listened intently and memorized the directions to the most minute detail. He had heard that the spirit world was far to the south. He immediately set out on his journey. After two weeks, he still saw no change in the landscape to indicate that the spirit world was near.
Then he emerged from the forest and saw the most beautiful plain he had ever seen. In the distance was a small hut where an ancient wise man lived. He asked the wise man for directions.
The old man knew exactly who the warrior was and whom he sought. He told the lad that the bride had passed by only a day before. In order to follow her, the warrior would have to leave his body behind and press on in his spirit. The spirit world itself is an island in a large lake that can be reached only by canoes waiting on this shore. However, the old man warned him not to speak to his bride until they were both safely on the island of the spirits.
Soon the old man recited some magic chants and the warrior felt his spirit leave his body. Now a spirit, he walked along the shore and saw a birch bark canoe. Not a stone's throw away was his bride, entering her own canoe. As he made his way across the water and looked at her, he saw that she duplicated his every stroke. Why didn't they travel together? One can only enter the spirit world alone and be judged only on one's individual merits.
Midway through the journey, a tempest arose. It was more terrible than any he had ever seen. Some of the spirits in canoes were swept away by the storm, these were those who had been evil in life. Since both the warrior and his bride were good, they made it through the tempest without incident and soon the water was as smooth as glass beneath a cloudless sky.
The island of the blessed was a beautiful place where it was always late spring, with blooming flowers and cloudless skies, never too warm or too cold. He met his bride on the shore and took her hand. They had not walked ten steps together when a soft sweet voice spoke to them, it was the Master of Life.
The Master told them that the young warrior must return as he came; it wasn't his time yet. He was to carefully trace his steps back to his body, put it on, and return home. He did this and became a great chief, happy in the assurance that he would see his bride once again.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Lodge-Boy And Thrown-Away's Father


A man was living with his wife, who was pregnant. He had a large supply of dry meat. Once, before starting on a hunt, he said to his wife, "If you should hear someone calling you, don't listen to him. He will call you four times, but don't look at him." When he was gone, the woman heard someone calling her. The person calling finally asked, "Where is the door of your lodge?" She answered, "You know where it is." Then the man entered. She offered him food. The stranger said, "That is not the way I am used to eating. Put the food on your belly." She obeyed, and he ate from her belly. Then he cut open her belly, pulled out two children from it, then ran around every lodge-post with the woman, went to the fireplace, and thence descended underground with her.

When the hunter returned, he found his twin sons crying. He called the wolves, set up a good lodge for them and bade them guard his children while he went in pursuit of his wife. Then he ran around every lodge-post and descended through the fireplace. After a while, he went above ground and saw lots of people camping by a lake. His wife's lodge was also there. He went to an old woman's tent and asked, "Where is my wife's lodge?" "Your wife is here, but these people are bad, they will not give her up to you. While you are sleeping, they will try to kill you by the aid of their manitous." They tried, but they could not kill him. The hunter said, "Grandmother, tell those people to let me alone." The old woman went to them and returned, saying, "These people want you to swim in the lake." They stuck a big post in the middle of the lake and told him to dive in, shake the post and return to shore. He went in, did what he was told, and returned in safety. They bade him try again. He dove and did not come back to the surface all day. The people thought he was drowned, but in the night he returned to the old woman's lodge. She told him the people were going to cook him. He said, "When I am cooked, take all my bones with some hair, pile them up, cover them with a blanket and cry, 'Wake up!' Then I'll wake up again." His enemies cooked him. The old woman followed his instructions. When the bones were piled up, she cried, "Grandson, you are sleeping a long time, wake up!" He stood up and said, "I will tell you something. When the sun shines into the lodge, you and my wife shall hold my clothes." Then he went to his enemies' lodge. The sun shone in. The old woman and his wife held his clothes. He pulled down the sun, it grew hotter, and all his enemies were killed. He took his wife home. Their twins were beginning to run about. The woman raised them.


At one time, animals and people lived together peaceably and talked with each other. But when mankind began to multiply rapidly, the animals were crowded into forests and deserts.
Man began to destroy animals wholesale for their skins and furs, not just for needed food. Animals became angry at such treatment by their former friends, resolving they must punish mankind.
The bear tribe met in council, presided over by Old White Bear, their Chief. After several bears had spoken against mankind for their bloodthirsty ways, war was unanimously agreed upon. But what kinds of weapons should the bears use?
Chief Old White Bear suggested that man's weapon, the bow and arrow, should be turned against him. All of the council agreed. While the bears worked and made bows and arrows, they wondered what to do about bowstrings. One of the bears sacrificed himself to provide the strings while the others searched for good arrow- wood.
When the first bow was completed and tried, the bear's claws could not release the strings to shoot the arrow. One bear offered to cut his claws, but Chief Old White Bear would not allow him to do that because without claws he could not climb trees for food and safety. He might starve.
The deer tribe called together its council led by Chief Little Deer. They decided that any Indian hunters, who killed deer without asking pardon in a suitable manner, should be afflicted with painful rheumatism in their joints.
After this decision, Chief Little Deer sent a messenger to their nearest neighbours, the Cherokee Indians.
"From now on, your hunters must first offer a prayer to the deer before killing him," said the messenger. "You must ask his pardon, stating you are forced only by the hunger needs of your tribe to kill the deer. Otherwise, a terrible disease will come to the hunter."
When a deer is slain by an Indian hunter, Chief Little Deer will run to the spot and ask the slain deer's spirit, "Did you hear the hunter's prayer for pardon?"
If the reply is yes, then all is well and Chief Little Deer returns to his cave. But if the answer is no, then the Chief tracks the hunter to his lodge and strikes him with the terrible disease of rheumatism, making him a helpless cripple unable to hunt again.
All the fishes and reptiles then held a council and decided they would haunt those Cherokee Indians, who tormented them, by telling them hideous dreams of serpents twining around them and eating them alive. These snake and fish dreams occurred often among the Cherokees. To get relief, the Cherokees pleaded with their Shaman to banish their frightening dreams if they no longer tormented the snakes and fish.
Now when the friendly plants heard what the animals had decided against mankind, they planned a countermove of their own. Each tree, shrub, herb, grass, and moss agreed to furnish a cure for one of the diseases named by the animals and insects.
Thereafter, when the Cherokee Indians visited their Shaman about their ailments and if the medicine man was in doubt, he communed with the spirits of the plants. They always suggested a proper remedy for mankind's diseases.
This was the beginning of plant medicine from nature among the Cherokee Indian nation a long, long time ago.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Coyote helps create Man

Artist unknown


In the beginning Great Grandfather Spirit had just finished creating  Earth and all the animals, and he felt pleased with his creationsthe Earth and all the animals, and he felt pleased with his creations.  After some time the animals fighting each other over which of them  be the leader of all the other animalswill be the leader of all the other animals.
was not into fighting asked Grandfather Spirit to make a  and a to rule over all the animals of the Earth. and a to rule over all the animals of the Earth. Grandfather Spirit loved the idea and went to work on the man and woman right . Grandfather Spirit was having a hard time coming up with . Grandfather Spirit was having a hard time coming up with an  to make man and woman in. came to him to see how to make man and woman in. came to him to see how the  were coming. When he saw having were coming. When he saw having trouble  man and woman, Coyote with all his magic turned himself man and woman, Coyote with all his magic turned himself into  man. When the creator saw this, he thanked Coyote and went . When the creator saw this, he thanked Coyote and went to  the man in the showed himwork the man in the image Coyote showed him.

Once he created man out of the Earth he then blew life into man  came to life. Grandfather Spirit told the he will man came to life. Grandfather Spirit told the he will make  a mate. Grandfather Spirit started making an image that a mate. Grandfather Spirit started making an image that looked  like the man. Coyote and said" no, no, no, Grandfatherexactly like the man. Coyote and said" no, no, no, Grandfather Man won't find a woman who looks like this . Here is . Here is how  woman should look like." then Coyote again transformed woman should look like." then Coyote again transformed himself  of a woman. Grandfather Spirit studied this of a woman. Grandfather Spirit studied this image  went to work on creating woman out of the Earth. done the  looked just like the image of the woman that Coyote showed  Creator.

Grandfather blew life into the woman and man and creator  this was good. The Creator told Man and Woman that they are  the new leaders of the land and to treat the Earth and all who  on because they all come from Mother Earth.  Grandfather Spirit thanked Coyote for his help and to show his thanks  gave Coyote the more magical powers than any other animal.


“The Rainbow Crow was beautiful to hear and to see, back in the days when it never got cold, back in the Ancient Days before appeared in the World.

When the Snow Spirit, all the people, and animals were freezing and a messenger was selected to go up to, The Creator Who Creates By Thinking What Will Be. The messenger was to ask The Creator to think of the World as being warm again so that they would not all freeze to death.

Rainbow Crow was chosen to go and he flew upward for three days. He got the Creator’s attention by singing beautifully, but even though he begged the Creator to make it warm again, the Creator said He could not, because He had thought of Cold and He could not it. But He did think of Fire, a thing that could warm the when it was cold. And so He poked a stick into the Sun until it was burning, and gave it to Rainbow Crow to carry back to earth for the creatures. The Creator told Rainbow Crow to hurry before it burned all up.

Rainbow Crow dove down and flew as fast as he could go. The burning stick charred all of his beautiful feathers until they were black and since he was carrying the stick in his beak, he breathed the smoke and heat until his voice was hoarse.

And so the Rainbow Crow was black and had an unpleasant cawing voice forever after, but all the creatures honored him, for he had brought Tindeh, fire, for everyone to use.

The Crow is to this day, still honored by hunters and animals, who never kill it for food and, if you look closely at the Crow’s black feathers you can still see many colors gleaming in the black.”