The Petrified Alp, by Wilhelm Ruland

In the region where the Rhine has its source there towered in ancient times a green Alp. This Alp belonged to an honest peasant, and along with a neat little house in the valley below formed his only possession.

The man died suddenly and was deeply mourned by his wife and child. Some days after an unexpected visitor was announced to the widow. He was a man who had much pastureland up in that region, but for a long time his one desire had been to possess the Alp of his neighbour now deceased, as by it his property would be rounded off to his satisfaction.

Quickly making his resolution he declared to the dismayed woman that the Alp belonged to him: her husband had secretly pledged it to him in return for a loan, after the bad harvest of the previous year. When the widow angrily accused him of being a liar the man produced a promissory note, spread it out, and with a hard laugh showed her his statement was confirmed in black and white. The distressed woman burst into tears and declared it was impossible that her late husband should have made a secret transaction of such a nature. The Alp was the sole inheritance of their son, and never would she willingly surrender it.

“I will pay you compensation for the renunciation of your claim, although nothing obliges me to do so,” declared the visitor with apparent compassion, in the meantime producing his purse.

The weeping woman motioned to him to put back his gold and told him to go, which he did.

Three days later the widow was summoned before the judge. There the neighbour produced his document and repeated his demand for the possession of the disputed Alp.

The judge, who had been shamefully bribed, declared the document valid and awarded the Alp to the pursuer. The broken-hearted widow staggered home.

The new possessor of the Alp on the other hand hastened up to the mountains at full gallop. The man could no longer master his impatience to see for the first time as his legally recognised property the pastureland he had acquired by deceit.

There, for three days a storm had raged uninterruptedly. As quickly as the soaked ways would permit he ascended to the high country.

Having arrived he stared around with horrified eyes, and fell in a swoon to the earth, overcome with consternation.

Upon the soft green Alp an unseen hand had rolled a mountain of ice. Of the possession which the unjust judge had assigned to him nothing was now to be seen. His own pastures too which adjoined were covered with snow and ice, whilst the meadows of the other Alpsmen below, lay spread out in the morning light like a velvet carpet.

Towards noon a broken man rode home into the valley cursing himself and the wicked magistrate who had consented to such an evil transaction.

The people there however said to each other: “The Fronfasten Mütterli (the little mother of the Emberweeks) Frau Sälga passed over our valley last night with her train of maidens. Over the house of that greedy rich man the ghostly company stopped, and by that it is fixed which one must die in the course of the year.”

And so it happened. Up there where the youthful Rhine rushes down through deep rocky chasms the petrified Alp stands to this day, a silent warning from by-gone days.

The Blackfoot and the Bear, by Cyrus MacMillan

One summer long ago, when the Blackfeet Indians roamed freely over the Canadian plains, the son of one of the Chiefs decided to go off alone to seek adventure. He wanted to be a great man like his father, and he thought he could never become great if he always stayed at home. He said to his father, “I am going away far to the West, beyond the mountains. I have heard that our Indian enemies who live there have many fine horses. I will bring some of their horses back to you.” His father loved his son well, for he was his only child. He knew that it would be a very dangerous journey, and he tried to persuade his son not to go. But the boy said, “Have no fear for me. If I do not come back before the frost is on the prairies, do not be worried about me. But if I do not come before the snow lies deep on the plains, then you will know that I have gone forever and that I shall never come back.” His father knew that only by attempting dangerous deeds and doing hard tasks could his son become great. And although he was loath to see him go, he said good-bye and wished him good luck.

It was summer in the north country when the boy set out. He took a number of companions with him. They travelled towards the Great Water in the West, and in a few days they passed through the foot-hills and then beyond the mountains. Soon they came to a great river. They saw the trail of Indians along the bank. They followed the trail for many days, and at last in the distance they saw the camps of their enemies. Then they stopped where they would be hidden from their enemies’ sight. That night a new summer moon was shining in the sky, and by its light they could see many horses around the distant camp. The moon disappeared early. When it had gone and the night was quite dark, the young man went to the camp to get the horses. He went alone and told his comrades to wait for him. Soon he came back driving many horses. But his enemies had heard him driving the horses and they set out in pursuit of him. When he reached his own camp, he called to his comrades to ride for their lives. All night they rode with their horses. When morning broke, the fleeing Blackfeet could see the dust of their pursuers far behind them. For days they rode with their enemies not far away. They passed at last through the mountains and out again into the rolling foothills. The plains were before them, and already they could feel the wind of the prairies. They thought they were now safe.

But their pursuers slowly but surely gained on them. Soon they were close upon them, and a shower of arrows told the Blackfeet that they would have to fight. The Blackfeet saw on the trail ahead of them a lonely pine tree. It was surrounded by scrubby trees and shrubs. To this spot they fled. They dug a pit and tried to defend themselves. But their pursuers surrounded the spot and shot their arrows into it. All the young Chief’s comrades were soon killed, and when night came on he alone remained alive. He was wounded and weary, but he lay silent in the pit. Then his pursuers built fires all around the place where he lay to prevent his escape and to drive him out of his hiding place. As the fires crept closer, the young man thought that he must surely die. Then he prayed to the Spirit of the Storm that rain might fall, and he used all the charms he carried with him to try to bring rain. Soon a heavy rain began to fall and the fires were put out. The night became very dark, for the sky was covered with storm clouds. In the darkness the young man crawled through the trees and soon reached the open plain. He crawled north into the foothills and hid in a cave in the hills. He covered the front of the cave with grass and boughs and lay hidden out of sight. For many days and nights he lay there waiting for his wounds to heal. At night he crawled out and gathered berries and roots for food. But his wounds did not heal rapidly. He grew weaker and weaker, and at last he was unable to leave the cave. He waited for death. He thought of his home far away to the south-east, and of his people’s fear and worry for him, for the snow would soon be deep on the plains.

One day when the snow was falling and he knew that winter had come, he heard footsteps outside the cave. He thought that an enemy had found him. The footsteps drew nearer, and soon a huge form appeared at the door. It was not an Indian, but a bear. The young man knew then that the cave was the bear’s winter home.

He thought that the bear would eat him. But the bear only sniffed and smelled him all over. The man said, “Are you going to kill me or to help me?” The bear said, “I will help you. I will take you home to your people. We will start in a few days.” Then the bear licked the man’s wounds. The man said he was very hungry, and the bear said he would go out and get food. So he went off and soon came back with a grouse in his mouth. The man ate the grouse and felt better. Each day the bear brought him food, and licked his wounds so that they healed. At last, one morning the bear said, “To-day I must take you home. Get on my back and hold on tight, and I will soon carry you to your people.” So the man climbed up on the bear’s back and held on tight to his long hair. And the bear trotted off towards the man’s home. For many days he ran over the plains. Each night he rested and caught food to feed himself and the man. At last they came one night to the top of a ridge in the plains. From here, as the young man looked, he could see not far away the camps of his people near a broad winding river. The bear said, “Now you see your home-land. We shall camp here to-night. To-morrow you must go on alone, and I shall go back to the hills.” So in the morning the bear got ready to go back. He said, “The snow is lying deep on the hills. I must hurry and find a den for the winter.” The man was sorry to see him go. He said, “You have been very kind to me. Can I do anything for you in return for your kindness?” And the bear answered, “You can do one thing for me. Tell your people what I have done for you. And tell them never to kill a bear that has gone to its den for the winter. Tell them always to give a bear a chance to fight or to run for his life.” Then the bear said good-bye and trotted away towards his winter home in the distant hills, and the man walked on to his people on the plains. He told his people of his adventures and what the bear had done for him. And since that day the Blackfeet of the Canadian plains will not kill a bear that has gone to its den for the winter. They still remember the favour asked by the bear in return for his kindness to their ancestor in the old days.

The Sad Tale of Woodpecker and Bluejay, by Cyrus MacMillan

A sister and brother lived alone in a house in the forest. Their father and mother were dead. The boy had a strange magic power which had been given to him by his parents. The two children loved each other very deeply. The brother cared well for his sister and protected her from all danger. He knew that the forest had many evil creatures who would be glad to carry off his sister if they could. The brother often went far away to hunt. He was often gone for many days. When he went away, he always said to his sister, “Keep the door barred while I am gone, and do not speak to anyone.”

One day the brother went far away into the forest. He would not be home till evening. He said to his sister, “Keep the door barred; do not eat until I come back, and do not speak to anyone.” Then he went his way into the woods. The sister forgot her brother’s warning. It was a hot day, and she opened the door for air. Soon Otter appeared at the door. The girl spoke to him and he came in. Otter spoke to her, but she remembered the warning of her brother and she would speak no more. Otter talked and asked her questions, but she would not answer. Then Otter became very angry. He determined to make her speak. He caught her roughly and pulled down her hair. Her hair was very long and beautiful and as black as the raven’s wing. He dragged her by the hair to the fire, as if he would burn her, and said, “You will speak, you will speak or I will kill you.” But she would not speak. Then he cut off her hair, hoping that she would cry out. But still she refused to utter a sound. Then he ate her food. He ate everything in the house, for he was a great eater. But still she said not a word of protest. Then Otter went away in disgust and rage, babbling loudly as he went.

But just as Otter left the house, the girl’s brother was coming home. He saw Otter through the trees, and he knew that harm had been done. He came to the house, and through the door he saw his sister with her hair cut short. When he came in, he asked her what was the matter. She told him what had happened. He was very cross, and he scolded her for leaving the door open and for speaking to Otter. He said, “You did not heed my warning. Why did you not run out when Otter came in?” But the girl said, “It would have done no good; he would have followed me and caught me.” And the man said, “Why did you not wish for me?” for each had power to bring the other home at once by a wish. But his sister said, “I was so frightened I did not think of it.” “Why do you cry?” the brother asked. “Because he hurt me,” she answered, “and because he cut off my beautiful hair.”

Then the brother took pity on her. He comforted her and said, “Do not cry for that; I will make your hair grow beautiful again. But your good name is lost; you can never get that back; you have disobeyed my orders; you have talked to a wicked man.”

Then he dressed his sister in good clothes, and washed and combed her hair. And as he combed it, it grew longer and longer and more beautiful than before, and the girl was comforted. Then he made paint from roots. He made red paint and blue paint. And he painted her face and head red, and painted his own face and head blue. Then he watched for Otter that he might take vengeance. Soon he saw Otter going to the lake to fish. Otter went down under the water. The brother went to the shore of the lake and sang his magic song. And at once the lake froze over. Otter felt the cold underneath the water, and he came up in great haste. He bumped his head on the ice and broke the ice; then he stuck his head through the hole to see what had happened. But as he looked, the water froze around his neck, and he could get neither under the ice nor upon it. He was held fast, and the brother killed him by breaking his head with a stout stick.

Then the brother went home and told his sister that he had taken vengeance and had killed Otter. And he said, “Now, you and I must part.” His sister cried and pleaded to be forgiven, but he said, “We must part; we cannot dwell longer among our people; they know you have disobeyed me and have done evil.”

Then they said good-bye. And the brother said, “You go south-west; I will go north-east; and soon we shall be changed from what we are.” Then they parted and went in different ways as he had said. And at once by his magic power they were changed, and she became a Woodpecker and he became a Bluejay. And her head is still red because of the paint he put on her; and he is still blue because of the paint he put on himself. But although they parted, they are still mindful of each other. She always taps on the trees to let her brother know that she is still alive, and he calls, “I am here; I am here,” to let her know that he still lives. But he keeps more to the north country, and often in the autumn when the other birds fly south, he remains behind to spend the winter in the north.

The Strange Tale of Caribou and Moose, by Cyrus MacMillan

Two widows lived side by side in the forest. Their husbands had long been dead. Each widow had a little boy. One boy was called Caribou; the other was called Moose. One springtime the widows were gathering maple sap to make sugar. The two boys played at home. They talked of the great forest, and decided to travel, to see the big woods and the mountains far away. In the morning they set out on their journey. They walked all day, and in the evening they came to a camp far away in the woods. The camp was that of the Porcupines. The Porcupines were kind to the boys, and gave them food. In the morning they gave them new moccasins, and told them the road to follow. The road, they said, had many giants.

The boys travelled all day without mishap. At last they came to the edge of the wood where the giants lived. Here they met a woman. She was half Indian, for her mother was an Indian woman who had been carried off by a giant. Her mother had long been dead. The woman they met knew that the boys were of her mother’s people, and she treated them kindly. She told them that ahead of them were three great giants they would have to overcome before they could pass on their way. She gave them a box containing two dogs. The box was very small; it could be hidden in one hand. The dogs were no bigger than a fly, but when they were rubbed with the hand they grew very large and cross; and the more they were rubbed, the larger and crosser they became. The dogs were to be used, she said, to defeat the first giant. Then the woman told them of the second giant. She said he was very terrible, and that his head was covered with great toads, the poison of which would kill any one who touched them. She told them that the giant would ask them to kill a toad because it hurt his head, hoping thereby to poison them. She warned them not to touch it, and she gave them some cranberries, and told them to crush the cranberries in their hands when the giant made his request and the noise would make the giant think they were crushing the poisonous toad. Then she told them of the third giant; and she gave them a knife with which to overcome him. It was a very wonderful knife that could not be turned aside from anything it attacked.

Then the boys went on their way. Soon they saw the first giant standing by the side of the path. He rushed at them as if to kill them; but they opened their magic box and took out the dogs. They rubbed them until they grew very large and cross, and when the giant came near they let them loose. The dogs soon killed the giant, and the boys went on their way, leaving the dogs to go back to the woman who gave them. Soon they came to the second giant. He was very ugly and terrible, and he had long hair covered with toads. He met the boys kindly, hoping to deceive them. Then, just as the woman had told them, he said, “Something hurts my head. Do you see what it is?” And they said, “Yes, it is a great toad.” “Kill it,” said the giant. Then the boys put their hands close to his head and crushed the cranberries the woman had given them, and the giant thought the noise was that of the crushing of the toad. The boys then went on their way. The giant was well pleased, for he thought they would drop dead very soon because of the poison, and that next day he would find them and have a good meal. Soon the boys came to the third giant. He was very terrible, and he attacked them at once. But one of the boys drew the magic knife and plunged it into the giant’s breast. The giant could not turn it aside; it pierced his heart, and he fell dead. Then the boys knew that they were safe.

The next morning the boys decided to separate, and to go each his own way. Moose went north, and Caribou went south. By-and-by Moose came to a tent where dwelt a woman with one daughter. The daughter wished to be married, but her mother was jealous of her daughter’s charms, and she killed every suitor who wooed her daughter. Her mother had the power of a witch, which she had received from the Evil Spirit of the forest. The daughter loved Moose when she saw him. She warned him that her mother would try to kill him. Moose asked the mother if he might have the daughter as his wife, and the mother said, “Yes; but first you must do whatever I bid you.” To this Moose agreed. When he went to bed, the daughter warned him to be on his guard. The mother put a thick skin over him for a blanket, covering him all up. Then she went to get another, saying that it was a cold night. Moose knew he would soon smother without air under the thick skins when she piled them over him, and while she was gone he cut a hole through the skin with his magic knife so that his nose would go through it. The woman came back with other skins, and covered him with a great many, but in each skin Moose cut a hole over his nose so that he might get air. The woman left him, believing that he would smother in the night, for she did not want her daughter to wed; but Moose breathed freely and slept soundly.

The next morning the woman uncovered him, thinking that he was dead; but Moose said he had slept well. The woman wondered greatly, and resolved upon another plan to kill him. A great tree grew near the tent. It was hemlock, and bigger than a haystack at the bottom. It had thick bark which was loose at the top. The woman gave Moose a long pole and told him to knock down the bark. Moose took the pole and knocked a piece off, but as it fell he jumped from under it, for he could jump far. The heavy bark fell with a great crash. Then he knocked off all the bark until the tree was stripped, but he was unharmed. The woman wondered greatly. She resolved upon another plan to kill him. The next day she took Moose to an island far off the coast. There were no trees on the island. They left their canoe on the beach and walked inland. The woman said, “Wait here awhile; I will come back soon.” Then she went back to the beach. She took the canoe and paddled home, leaving Moose behind. “Now,” she said, “he will starve, for he cannot get off the island, and there is nothing there to eat.” When Moose came back to the beach, after waiting a long while, he saw the canoe a mere speck on the water far away. He was much troubled, for he thought that now he would surely die, and he cried loudly. But the sea-gulls flying above the beach heard his cries, and two large gulls came down to him. They told him not to cry, for they would save him. One went to each side of him and told him to take hold and hang on. So he put an arm around each gull’s neck, and they rose into the air with him and flew over the sea. Moose was very frightened when he looked down at the water. But the gulls took him home safely. He sat a long time on the beach, and then the woman came paddling her canoe from the island. When she reached the land, Moose said, “What kept you so long? I have been waiting for you a long time.” But he did not tell her how he had come home. The woman was so surprised she did not know what to say. But she resolved upon another plan to kill him.

The next day she invited Moose to a wrestling match on a high hill. The hill was full of stones. Moose decided that to save his own life he must kill the woman, because he had had enough of her treachery. They wrestled, and Moose let the woman throw him down, but because he was agile he saved himself from a great fall. He let her throw him a second time, but again he was unharmed, to her great surprise. The contest was three falls. The woman was sure she could kill him the third time. But the third time, Moose threw her down so hard that her back was broken on the stones. Then he tossed her high in the air, and she fell so hard that she was broken in pieces. Moose was then free from danger. He married the woman’s daughter; but he was not very happy. The daughter was like her mother and caused him trouble, for she was often very wicked. She was a great fisher, and went often to the streams to fish. She could go under the water and stay a long time and bring up fish in her hands. One night in winter she went down through a hole in the ice to fish. It was very cold, and while she was down, the hole froze over and she could not get out. She called to Moose to break the ice, but Moose was glad to be rid of her and he would not let her out. So she was drowned in the stream.

Moose never married again, and ever afterwards he lived a lonely life. He did not like company any more. That is why he is usually seen by himself, and why he usually travels alone in the forest. But Caribou, on the other hand, likes company, and that is why he is usually seen with five or six others of his kind, and why he seldom travels alone.

The Boy of Great Strength and the Giants, by Cyrus MacMillan

On the banks of a mighty river near a great lake in the West, there lived in old times a boy who was very small in size. As he grew older he did not grow larger, and he remained very tiny. He lived alone with his sister, who was older than he. His sister looked upon him as a child and made him toys to play with. One day in winter he asked his sister to make him a ball to play with on the ice of the river. And she made him a ball out of strong cord. The boy played on the ice, throwing the ball in front of him and running after it as it rolled to see if he could catch it. At last the ball went very far in front of him and the wind blew it along so that it did not stop rolling. He followed it a long distance and he saw in front of him four giant men lying on the ice spearing fish. When he came close to them, they looked at him and laughed, and one said, “See what a tiny mite is here,” but they did not speak to him. The boy was very cross because they had laughed at his small size, and he thought, “I shall teach them that I am powerful although I am small.”

As the boy passed them on his way back, he saw four large fish lying on the ice beside them. He took the one nearest to him and ran away as fast as he could. When the giant who owned the fish looked up, he saw the boy running away, and he said to his companions, “The small boy has stolen my fish.” When the boy reached home, his sister asked him where he had got the fish, and he answered that he had found it on the ice. “How could you get it there?” she asked, but he would not answer; he merely said, “Go and cook it.” So they cooked it and ate it for their evening meal.

The next day the boy played again on the ice of the river. The giant men were again fishing. When he came up to where they were, his ball rolled into a hole through which they fished. He asked one of the men to hand him his ball, but the man laughed at him and pushed the ball under the ice with his spear. Then the boy caught the man’s arm and twisted it until he broke it, for he had great strength; he picked his ball from under the ice and went home. The man with the broken arm called his comrades and showed them what had happened, and they all swore that they would kill the boy.

The next day the four giant brother fishermen set out to find the boy. Soon they reached his home among the rocks on the bank of the river. The boy’s sister heard the noise of their snow shoes on the crusted snow as they came near, and she ran into the house in great fear. But the boy said, “Have no fear; give me something to eat.” She gave him food on a dish which was made from a magic shell, and he began to eat. Just then the men came to the door and were about to push it open when the boy turned his dish up-side-down and at once the door was closed with a large stone. Then the men tried to crack the stone, and at last they made a small hole in it. One of them put his eye to the hole and peeped in, but the boy shot an arrow into his eye and killed him. Then the others, not knowing what had caused their brother to fall, peeped through the hole, and each one was killed in his turn by an arrow shot through his eye.

Then the boy went out and cut them into small pieces, and as he did so he said, “Henceforth let no man be bigger than your pieces are now.” So men became of their present size, and they have never since grown to giant stature.

When the springtime came, the boy’s sister made him new bows and arrows. He took one of the arrows and shot it far out into the lake. Then he swam out after it, while his sister in fear watched him from the shore and called to him to come back. But he cried loudly, “Fish of the red fins, come and swallow me.” And at once a great fish came and swallowed him. Then his sister tied an old moccasin to a strong cord and fastened it to a tree that grew out over the lake. And the fish said to the boy, “What is that floating in the water?” And the boy said, “Take hold of it and swallow it.” The fish swallowed it and was held fast to the tree by the cord. Then the boy took hold of the line and pulled himself and the fish to the shore. His sister cut the fish open and let the boy out. Then they cut up the fish and dried it, and the boy told his sister never again to doubt his strength, for although he was small he was very powerful. And since that time, men have never grown larger than he, but although small they have had power over all other creatures.

The First Pig and Porcupine, by Cyrus MacMillan

A man and his wife lived once long ago in the Canadian forest. They lived far away from other people, and they found it very lonely. They were very poor, for game was not plentiful, yet they were always happy and contented. They had only one child, a boy, whom they loved well. The boy grew up to be very strong and clever. But he was often lonely without any companions but his parents. The birds and the animals of the woods were his friends, because he was kind to them and they looked upon him as a comrade. At last he grew tired of his lonely life. He longed for adventure. So one day he said to his parents, “I am going far away to see other men and women and to do great deeds.” His parents did not want to let him go at first, for they would be very lonely without him. But they knew that he could never become great where he was, and they consented to let him go.

The next morning he set out on his journey. He travelled all day. At night he slept on the ground under the stars. In the morning Rabbit came to where he lay and woke him up. Rabbit said, “Hello, friend; where are you going?” “I am going to find people,” said the boy. “That is what I want to do too,” said Rabbit; “we shall go together.” So they went on together. They travelled a long distance through the forest. They crossed many small streams and climbed many hills. At last they heard voices through the trees, and soon they saw not far in front of them an Indian village. Rabbit hid among the trees, but the boy went forward alone to see the people. The people were all kind to him and gave him food and asked him to stay with them. But they were all very sad and many of them were weeping. The boy asked them what was the matter. They said, “The Chief has a very beautiful daughter, and word has come to us that to-morrow a great giant is coming to eat her up. It will be useless to send her away, for the giant will follow her. He is a very terrible monster and cannot be killed.” Then they continued to weep and lament.

The boy went out to the woods and told Rabbit what he had heard. He said, “We had better go on our way so that we may be far off when the giant comes.” But Rabbit said, “No. Go back to the people and tell them you can save the Chief’s daughter. Have no fear. When night comes bring the girl here to me and I will save her.” So the boy went back to the people and told them not to fear, for he would save the girl from the giant. They laughed at him at first, for everyone who had attempted to stop the giant had been killed. But when they saw that the boy was quite sure of his power, they listened to him. They went to the Chief and told him what the stranger had said. Then the Chief sent for him and said, “If you can save my daughter from the giant, she shall be yours.”

When evening came, the boy brought the girl to where Rabbit was waiting. Rabbit had a little carriage ready, drawn by two little squirrels. When he spoke to the squirrels they grew until they were as large as dogs. They all got into the carriage, the boy and the girl and Rabbit, and away went the squirrels. It was a clear summer night and the moon was full. The road was hard, and they ran along rapidly over the road among the trees, and soon they reached a village far away. They came to a tent on the bank of a stream. The boy went in and found only an old woman. She said, “Death is not far away from you. The giant is close on your heels.” Then she wept. She told them to go to the river, for her husband was there. So they went to the river. Rabbit and his squirrels stayed behind to see what the giant would do. The boy and girl found an old man fishing from the bank. He said, “Death is not far away from you, for the giant is close on your tracks. But I will help you.” He sprang into the water, and lay there and spread out his arms and legs. Then he said, “Stand on my back.” So they stepped to his back. They feared at first that they would fall off; but at once he grew as large as a big canoe, and he swam with them across the river. When they landed on the other side they turned to look at him and they saw then that he was old Sea Duck, the boy’s friend. He pointed to a high mountain. “Go to the mountain,” he said, “and there you will find Rabbit.” Then he swam away.

The boy and the girl went towards the mountain. But they heard the giant roaring behind them and splashing in the stream as he crossed. When they reached the foot of the mountain, he was almost upon them. At the foot of the mountain Rabbit was waiting for them. The side of the mountain was very steep. It was almost perpendicular. Rabbit took a long pole and held it up. “Climb this,” he said. As the boy and the girl climbed, the pole lengthened until they stepped from it to the top of the mountain. Rabbit climbed up after them with his squirrels. The giant saw them all from the foot of the mountain and climbed up the pole after them. But when he was near the top, the boy pushed the pole out and it fell backwards, taking the giant with it. The giant was killed by the fall. Then the boy and the girl and Rabbit got into the squirrel carriage. They went quickly down the other side of the mountain, and over the moonlit road until they came to the girl’s native village. When they reached the border of the village, Rabbit said, “Now, old friend, good-bye. I must go away. But if ever again you are in trouble, I will help you if I can.” Then Rabbit and his squirrels went away. The boy brought the girl back to the Chief’s home. The people all wondered greatly to see her alive. The Chief said to the boy, “You may have her as your wife.” So they were married and a great wedding feast was held.

But two young men of the girl’s village were very angry because the girl had married a stranger. Each wanted her for himself. So they decided to kill her husband. They asked him to go fishing with them far out to sea. The next day the boy went with them to the deep-sea fishing place. It was a long sail. When they were almost out of sight of land, the boy’s enemies threw him overboard before he could defend himself, and sailed away leaving him struggling in the water. The boy called for help. Not far away was a small island, and from the beach came a large white Sea Gull in answer to his cries. When Sea Gull saw his plight he said, “Have no fear, old friend, I will help you.” Sea Gull flew away and the boy lay on his back and floated with the tide. Soon Sea Gull came back carrying a long cord. He let down one end of it and told the boy to hold on to it tight. Then he said, “It is a long swim to the island. But I will tow you there.” And Sea Gull towed him to the island, and left him there, saying, “I am very tired after such a long pull. I can go no farther. Good-bye, old friend. Others will help you.”

As the boy sat shivering on the island beach, Fox came along. “Hello, old friend,” said Fox. “What are you doing here?” The boy told him what had happened, and said, “I am very hungry.” Fox said, “I have no food for you, but I can help you in another way.” Then Fox picked a blade of grass from the bank and said, “Eat it.” The boy ate it and at once he was changed into a horse and ate grass until he was full and his hunger had left him. When Fox saw that he was full, he gave him another blade of grass, and said, “Eat it.” He ate it and at once he was changed back to a boy. Then Fox said, “When night comes, I will take you home, for there is no boat on the island.” So they waited for the evening. When night came and the moon came out they went to the water’s edge. They could see the lights of the village far away across the sea. “Catch hold of my tail,” said Fox, “and hang on tight.” The boy caught Fox’s tail and Fox swam away, towing the boy behind him. The sea was very rough, and the waves ran high, and the boy thought he would never reach the land. But he held on tight and after some hours they came to the shore. Fox said, “Good-bye, old friend. I must go no farther. But if you are ever again in trouble, call me and I will help you.” Then Fox ran away along the beach.

The boy made a fire and dried his clothes and then went to the village. The people all wondered greatly to see him alive. They thought he was dead. They said, “To-morrow one of the men who took you fishing is to marry your wife. He told her you had drowned yourself because you were sorry you had married her. Then he asked her to be his wife and she consented.” The boy went to his old home and there found his wife. She was very frightened when she saw him, for she thought he had come back from the land of the dead. He told her of the treachery of the two men. She wept, but he said, “Do not weep, but rejoice, for I shall punish the two men to-morrow. There will be no wedding feast for them as they expected.” The next morning the boy went to the Chief, his father-in-law, and told him what had happened. The Chief said, “Put the two men to death.” But the boy said, “No, I have a better form of punishment.” Then he called Fox. When Fox came, he said to him, “Bring me two blades of grass that can change men into beasts, such as you used to change me yesterday.” Fox ran away and soon came back with the grass. The boy took the two blades, and went to the men who had tried to drown him. He said, “Here is some sweet grass I found under the sea. Taste it.” And each took a blade and ate it. At once they were changed. One became a pig and the other became a porcupine, and both had coarse hair or bristles all over them, and they had noses of a strange and funny shape. The boy’s punishment of his enemies was then complete. He said, “Live now despised by men, with your noses always to the ground.” So the first pig and the first porcupine appeared upon the earth.

The Duck with Red Feet, by Cyrus MacMillan

A hunter in old times lived on the bank of a river far away in the Canadian forest. He passed all his days in the deep woods where he had great success in catching and killing game. There was no better hunter than he in all the country. Every evening he returned to his home, bringing his day’s catch with him. His father and mother were both dead and he had no sister. He had only one brother. This brother was very small. He was so small that the hunter kept him in a little box; when he went away in the morning to hunt, he always closed the box up tight so that his little brother could not get out, for he feared that if he got out harm would come to him. Every night he took him out of the box to give him food, and the little man was so hungry that he always ate a great lot of food. The little man slept always with his brother, but every morning he was carefully locked up in the box. And in time he grew very tired of his prison.

One evening as the hunter came down the river from his hunting journey he saw a very beautiful girl sitting on the bank of the stream. He decided he would catch her and take her home to be his wife, for he was lonely. He paddled to the beach as silently as he could, but she saw him coming and she jumped into the water and disappeared. She went to her home at the bottom of the river and told her mother that the hunter had tried to catch her. But her mother told her that she should not have run away. She said, “The hunter who tried to catch you was intended to be your husband. You must wait for him to-morrow and tell him you will be his wife.”

The next night as the hunter came down the river, the girl was again sitting on the bank. He paddled over as he had done on the evening before, but this time she did not run away. She said, “I have been waiting for you. You may take me for your wife.” And the man, well pleased with his beautiful prize, placed her in his canoe and took her home. He did not tell her of his little brother in the box. He cooked a beaver for the evening meal. He and his wife ate half of it, but he placed the other half away in the cup-board. Then he told his wife to go to sleep, and she went to bed and soon fell asleep. When she awoke in the morning her husband had gone for his day’s hunting, for he had to leave early to go a long distance into the forest. She found too that the half of the beaver he had put in the cup-board was gone. And she wondered what had become of it.

That evening when her husband came home, he cooked another beaver for their meal. Again they ate one half of it, and the man placed the other half of it to one side. But not a word did he say of his brother in the box. Then the man sent his wife to bed as on the previous night, and soon she was fast asleep. When she awoke in the morning, her husband was gone for his day’s hunting. The half of the beaver which he had placed to one side was also gone, but she knew he had not taken it. She was afraid, and all day she wondered where the meat had gone. She decided that she would find out what had happened to it.

That night when her husband came home, he cooked half a small moose for their evening meal. They ate part of it, and the man placed the remainder of it to one side as usual. Then he told his wife to go to sleep. She went to bed and pretended to sleep, but she stayed wide awake, peeping through half-closed eyelids. When her husband thought she was sleeping soundly, he unlocked a little box that stood on a low shelf, and took out a little man and gave him the moose meat he had put aside. The little man ate every bit of it. He looked very strange. He was all red from head to heels, as if he were covered with red paint, and he said not a word. When he had greedily eaten all the meat, the man washed him and combed his hair and then put him back in the box and locked him up. The woman wondered greatly at this strange happening, but she could not keep from laughing heartily to herself because of the funny appearance of the little red man.

The next day the man left early for his day’s hunting. When she was sure he was far away, she thought she would take a peep at the queer little red man in the box. She found the key hanging on the wall, and opened the box and called to the little man to come out. But he would not come. He seemed to be very much afraid of her. She coaxed him to come out, but he refused. Then she caught him and pulled him out. He looked at her for a long time, but he would say not a word. Then he ran to the door, which was open, and with a sudden jump he sprang into the air and disappeared. The woman called to him but he would not come back. He was never seen again. The woman was very much afraid. But she was more frightened when she looked at her hands. They were all red because she had caught the little red man, and many red spots were on her arms and on her feet where the red colouring from the man had dropped. She tried to wash off the red spots, but she could not remove them. She washed and rubbed her hands all day, but the stains would not come off. When her husband came home in the evening, he knew when he saw her red hands what had happened. He knew that his brother of the box had gone. And he was very angry. He seized a rod and ran at her to beat her. She was afraid he would kill her, and she ran to the river and jumped in to go back to her old home. But as she reached the water, she was changed from what she was. At once she became a Sheldrake Duck. The red spots remained on her, and the sea could not wash them off. And to this day the Sheldrake Duck has red stains on her feet and feathers, because she was curious and took the funny little red man from the box in the olden days.

The Northern Lights, by Cyrus MacMillan

One autumn day in old times a woman and her infant son were lost in the Canadian woods. The woman was going back to her home from a long journey, and in some strange way she wandered from the path. The more she walked about, the more confused she became, and for many days she searched for the right road, but she could not find it. All the time she lived on berries and on the little food she carried. At last she found a cave in the woods, and she decided to use it for a home. She had not been long in the cave when a large bear came in, and she knew then that she had taken refuge in a bear’s den. She thought the bear would kill her and her child. But the bear was good. He looked upon them as his own kind and soon they all became friends. The bear hunted during the day, and each night he brought to the cave much meat, which the woman cooked. So they lived comfortably through the long winter.

After a time the woman’s child grew to be a very strong boy. The bear taught him to wrestle, and after a few weeks’ practice the boy could throw down his teacher. And the mother said, “He will be a great warrior,” for she knew that his strength was more than human. When the boy grew large and strong enough to take care of his mother, they decided to try to find the way back to their old home. So one day they said goodbye to the bear, and set out on their journey. After many hardships and dangers they reached their native village where the people, who had thought them dead, received them with great rejoicing. The boy continued to grow in strength until the people said they had never seen anyone so powerful. There was no limit to his strength.

One day the boy said to his mother, “I am going to travel far away until I find other men who are as strong as I am. Then my strength will be tested and I will come back to you.” His mother agreed that he should go, and one morning he set out on his strange journey. He came to the bank of a river, and there he saw a man standing not far ahead of him. As he looked, a large canoe came drifting down the river, filled with people. They had lost their paddles. One of the people called to the man on the bank and asked him to help them to land. The man put out a long pole and placed the end of it under the canoe, and lifted the canoe and all the people to the beach. “There,” thought the boy, “is a man as strong as I am.” Then the boy ran to the spot and picked up the canoe full of people and carried it up to the bank. He spoke to the man and told him of his own great strength. Then he said, “We are two strong men. Let us go along together until we find a third man as strong as we are.” The man agreed, and he went along with the boy. They travelled far that day, and in the afternoon they came to a country of high rocky hills. It was a lonely and silent place, and no people seemed to be living in it. At last they saw a man rolling a large stone up the side of a mountain. The stone was as large as a house, and the mountain was very steep, but the man rolled the stone up with ease. He had rolled it half way up when the two strangers came along. The boy picked up the stone and threw it to the top of the mountain without difficulty. And the roller-man looked at them with great wonder. Then the boy told him of the strength of himself and his comrade, and said, “We are three strong men. Let us go hunting together.” The man agreed, and the three went along together.

They built a house for themselves, to live in while they hunted. They agreed that only two of them should go away at once to hunt, and that the other should stay at home to look after the place and to prepare the evening meal. They decided that each should stay at home in his turn. The next day, the man of the river bank who had lifted the canoe stayed at home. Towards evening he got ready for the coming of his comrades, and he cooked a good meal to have waiting for them. Just as he had finished cooking it, a small boy came in and asked for food. He was very small and worn and ragged, and the man pitied him and told him to eat what he wanted. The boy ate and ate until he had eaten all the food prepared for the three strong men. Then he went away and disappeared in the side of the mountain. When the two hunters came home they were very hungry, and they were cross when they heard that their meal had all been eaten up. And they vowed vengeance on the little glutton who had taken all their food.

The next day it was the turn of the stone-rolling man to stay at home. In the evening he cooked a good meal for himself and his comrades. But before the hunters came home, the little boy came in again and asked for food. He looked so small and worn and he cried so bitterly that the man did not have the heart to send him away, and he told him to eat what he wanted. The boy ate and ate until not a scrap of food was left. Then he laughed and went out and disappeared in the mountain. When the two hunters came home, they were again very cross to find that their food had all been eaten up by a tiny boy.

The next day the strong boy stayed at home, while the canoe-lifter and the stone-roller went hunting. In the evening the small boy came again, just as he had done on the two previous days. He wept and asked for food. The strong boy told him to eat what he wanted. He ate and ate as before, until he had eaten up the whole meal. Then he got up to go out. But the strong boy caught him and held him fast. There was a long struggle, for the tiny boy was very powerful, and he was almost a match for the strong boy. But at last he was thrown down, and he pleaded for his life. The strong boy said he would spare him on condition that he would take him to his home. He wanted to see what kind of a place he lived in. And the small boy agreed. Then the strong boy went with him to the side of the mountain. When they reached it, the little boy said, “I am the servant of a terrible giant, who has never been defeated in battle. I think you can overcome him. Take this stick and beat him with it, for it is the only thing that can give him pain.” Then he gave him a stick that lay on the ground, and they went on to the giant’s cave in the side of the hill. When they went in, the giant sprang upon the strong boy. There was a long fight. It lasted for a whole day, and at last the strong boy overcame the giant and beat him dead with the magic stick. Then the little boy said, “I will reward you for freeing me from my terrible master. I have three beautiful sisters, and you may have whichever one you want for your wife.” He took the strong boy to his home in a cave far down in a valley on the other side of a mountain, and there they found the three beautiful girls. The strong boy took the youngest one for himself, and he took the other two for his two comrades. When they came out of the cave, the strong boy found that they would have a very hard path to climb up the steep side of the mountain. Then luckily, as he thought, he saw his two strong comrades standing on the top of the high cliff far above him. They saw him and the three girls far below them. He called to them to let down a rope, and said, “The three girls I have with me cannot climb the steep path. You must pull them up.” So the men above let down a strong cord and the strong boy sent up the two oldest girls first, one at a time. Then, before sending up his own choice, the youngest, he thought he would test the loyalty of his comrades. They were standing far back from the top of the cliff, holding the rope, and they could not see the boy and the girl below. The boy tied a heavy stone to the end of the rope, and called, “I am going up next. Pull away.” The men pulled and pulled until they had drawn the weight near the top of the cliff. Then they cut the rope, and down crashed the stone to the bottom of the cliff, where it broke into many pieces. The men above hoped that they had killed their comrade. They did not think that he had meant the two fairy wives for them, so they decided to kill him. But they were outwitted by the boy and the stone. “That is a fine way to reward my kindness,” said the boy to his girl companion when he saw the stone in pieces on the rocks. As he spoke he looked up and saw the two fairy girls running away from the two men above, who were left all alone. Then with the magic help of the little boy, the girls’ brother, the strong boy at once punished the two men by making them follow the girls. They followed them on and on, but they never found them. And they still follow them; they wander always, and they are never at rest.

Then the strong boy left the little boy behind him to look after himself, and he took his fairy wife and climbed up the path and went to live far away in the forest. For a time they lived very happily. One day the boy said, “I am going back to my old home to see my people. You must wait here, and in a few days I shall come back.” The girl did not want him to go; she feared he would forget her; but he told her that he must go. Then she said, “When you reach your home, a small black dog will meet you at the door. It will jump to lick your hand. But do not let it touch you. It is an evil spirit in disguise, and if it licks your hand you will forget all about me and you will not come back to me.” The man promised to be on his guard, and he set out for his native place, leaving his wife behind him. Soon he reached his home, and as he opened the door, sure enough the black dog of which his wife had spoken jumped towards him. Before the strong boy could turn aside, the dog licked his hand as his wife had said. Then he forgot all about his old life in the forest; and he lived with never a thought of the fairy girl he had left behind him far away.

His wife waited long for him to come back. Then she knew that her husband had forgotten her because of the black dog, and late in the autumn she set out to find him. Soon she came to the place where he dwelt. It was morning, and she decided to hide until night, and then go to his home. She went to a stream that ran beside the village, and climbed into a tree that stretched out over the water. Near by was an old house in which an old man lived. The old man came to the brook for water, and as he bent down to fill his pail, he saw the face of the beautiful girl in the tree reflected in the stream. He called to her to come down from the tree. He had never seen a creature so lovely. He brought her to his tent and gave her food, and he told her that her husband had gone far up the river to hunt. In the evening she went along the river to wait for her husband as he came home. When she saw him coming in his canoe, she sat on the bank of the stream and sang her magic song. It was a song of wonderful melody, such as only fairy maidens can sing, and the sound went far over the water and charmed all who heard it. When her husband heard the song, he stopped to listen. He soon knew that the music was that of his fairy wife of the forest, for no one else on earth could sing so wonderful a song. Then his old life in the forest came back to his mind, with memories of the two strong men and the tiny boy and the three fairy girls. And he remembered his wife to whom he had promised to return. Then he paddled his canoe to the bank, and found his wife, and they were happy again. It was a cold autumn night and the moon was full, and his wife said, “We must not stay here. This is a wicked place where men forget. If you stay here, you will forget me again.” Then she shuddered when she thought that her husband might forget her again, and he shuddered when he thought that he might lose her again. And they continued to tremble in fear. Then she said, “We must go to another land. It is a more beautiful land than this. It is the Land of Eternal Memory where men and women never forget those they loved. I know where it is. We will go to it.” Then she sang her magic song, and at once a great bird came through the air to where they sat. And still trembling in fear lest they should forget each other, they sprang to the bird’s back, and the bird carried them up to the sky. And there they were changed into Northern Lights. And you can still see them, with their children around them, on autumn nights in the north country, beautiful in the northern sky. And they still tremble when they think of the Land of Forgetfulness they have left and of the pain it caused them in the old days of their youth.

The Moon and His Frog-Wife, by Cyrus MacMillan

When Glooskap first reigned upon the earth, what is now the Moon shone by day and what is now the Sun shone by night. Their work was exactly opposite to what it is to-day, for the present Moon was then the Sun and the present Sun was then the Moon. The Moon was then very red and bright; the Sun was pale and silvery. At that time the Sun—the present Moon—kept very irregular hours, and was very careless about his work. Sometimes he rose very early in the morning and set very late at night; at other times he rose very late and went to bed very early. For weeks in the winter he refused to shine at all, and even when he did appear at his work he gave very little warmth and he might just as well have been covered in his clouds. The Moon—the present Sun—was, on the other hand, always faithful to his duties.

At last the people grew tired of the Sun’s strange actions and irregularities. They protested loudly against his methods of work, until in the end they sent some of their number to complain to Glooskap. Glooskap rebuked the Sun, but the latter answered that he had done his work as well as he could, and that his accusers were merely his enemies. Glooskap had really been too busy to notice the Sun’s way of working; so, that he might treat all with fairness, he said to the accusers: “Charge the Sun formally and openly with neglect of his duty; I will call a great meeting of all my people; we will hold a trial to judge him; I myself will be the judge; whoever wants to give evidence may do so, and the Sun may make his defence.” To this all the people and the Sun agreed.

Now, in those days the Sun had many wives. With some of them he was far from happy, for often they sorely tormented him and tried his patience, and a few of them he would gladly get rid of if he could. One of his scolding wives was Frog. She had a crumpled back and a wrinkled face and a harsh voice; she was always jumping about, and with her of all his wives he was on the least friendly terms. When she heard that her husband was to be tried before Glooskap on a serious charge, she wished to be present at the trial, for she was very inquisitive. But the Sun said, “This trial is for men, not for women; your place is at home and not in the courts of warriors; you must not come.” The Frog-wife pleaded to be allowed to go, but the more she pleaded the more sternly the Sun refused his permission. However, being a woman, and not to be outdone by a man, she resolved to go to the trial whether her husband permitted it or not, and she decided to steal into the court quietly after the trial had commenced.

At last the day of the trial arrived. The great court-tent was filled with Glooskap’s people. In the centre of the platform sat Glooskap, and near him sat the Sun, eager to defend himself from the charges of his enemies. When the trial was well advanced, and the evidence had nearly all been taken, the Sun’s Frog-wife appeared suddenly at the door. All the seats were filled, but Glooskap with his usual politeness arose to find her a place. But when the Sun saw her there contrary to his wishes, he was very angry. He looked at her sternly with a frown, making at her a wry, twisted face; and drawing down his right eyelid, he said to Glooskap, “Oh, Master, do not trouble yourself to find her a seat; let her sit on my eyelid; that is a good enough seat for her; she can hang on there well enough, for she always wants to stick to me and follow me wherever I go.” And at once the Frog-wife jumped to his eyelid and sat there quite comfortably.

Then the trial went on. Because of the Sun’s clever defence of himself he was declared “not guilty” of the charges against him. It was decided by the judge, Glooskap,—and all the people, even the accusers, agreed—that under the circumstances he had done his work as well as he could, and that he deserved neither blame nor punishment. But at the close of the trial, when the Sun attempted to go back to his work, he could not get rid of his Frog-wife. He tried with all his might but he could not shake her off. She stuck fast to his eyelid and stubbornly refused to leave her seat, and she said that henceforth she would stay with him to see that he did his work well. All the people pulled and tugged and coaxed, but they failed to move her. The strongest men in the land came, but even they could not pull her away. Then the people lamented and said to Glooskap: “She covers the side of the Sun’s face and hinders his work; she makes him ugly; we must not have our Light of Day disfigured like this and bright on one side only; all the world will laugh at us. What are we to do?” And they were in great sorrow and distress.

But Glooskap in his wisdom found a way out of the difficulty. He said: “Be not troubled, O my people! We will make the Moon and the Sun exchange places; the Moon, who is still perfect and unharmed, shall become the Light of Day instead of Night, and shall take the name Sun. The Sun shall become the Light of Night instead of Day, and shall take the name Moon; for at night it will matter little if one side of his face is dark; and his Frog-wife hanging to his eyelid will by night be little noticed.” To this the people all agreed. And so the Sun was changed with the Moon to shine by night, and the Moon was changed with the Sun to shine by day.

So now when the Moon—the old Sun—first appears at his work, he holds away from the earth the side of his face to which his Frog-wife is hanging, for he is very much ashamed of his appearance. And when he turns his head full upon the earth, you can still see, when the sky is clear, his black Frog-wife hanging to his right eyelid and covering one side of his face. And always when his month’s work is nearly done he turns his head abruptly in a frantic effort to shake her off, but he never succeeds. She hangs there always, and because of his Frog-wife’s curiosity he shall never shine again by day.

The First Mosquito, by Cyrus MacMillan

When Glooskap lived with his people it happened once that the tribes grew jealous of his power. This jealousy was not because of any evil in themselves; it was prompted by a wicked sorceress who during the absence of Glooskap prevailed upon the people to do him harm. Some said that the sorceress was angry because she had once loved Glooskap and he had refused to return her love; others said that she was much older than Glooskap, that before his birth she had herself ruled the earth for a long time, and that when Glooskap came he had put an end to her reign. The truth of the matter no man knows, but it is certain that she was very powerful and that she always watched for a chance to harm Glooskap.

Her chance came when Glooskap went for six weeks on a hunting trip far into the forest. She then told the people that he was neglecting them, and she soon persuaded them to pack up and leave him, for she believed that he would perish if he were left alone. When the people went away, they took with them Dame Bear, Glooskap’s old grandmother, and his little brother, whom Glooskap had left behind. The band journeyed hastily across the land to the sea; then they sailed in their canoes to a great island, where they stopped and set up their tents. And the sorceress left the road they travelled well guarded by evil beasts and dragons who, she hoped, would kill Glooskap if he tried to follow them. She made Dame Bear and the little boy her slaves, and compelled them to do much hard work. She gave them but little food and but scanty clothing, so that they were soon very miserable.

When Glooskap came back to his home at the end of six weeks, he found that his people had disappeared. His friend Fox, who had watched slyly the people’s departure and the wicked woman’s tricks, told him all that had happened. Glooskap did not blame his people, for he knew that their going away had been brought about by his old enemy. But that he might teach his people the folly of their act,—for he knew that they would now be very hungry and poor,—he tarried alone in his home-land for many years before he set out to find them and to take vengeance on their wicked leader. Then, taking his magic belt and his two dogs, he set out upon his long journey. He went across the sea to another land, and then he travelled eastward, his dogs following close behind him. Here he was far from the road that his people had travelled, and there were no dragons to bar his progress.

Soon he came to a village where the people were friendly. He heard from an old man and woman about the road along which the sorceress and his own people had passed. The old man told him of the dragons ahead of him and of the evil, hideous creatures that had been left to guard the way. But Glooskap, unafraid, and trusting in his dogs and his magic belt, set out along the enchanted road. At last he came to a narrow pass in the hills watched over by two terrible dogs. He put his magic belt around the necks of his own dogs for a moment, and at once they grew to an immense size; and they easily killed the beasts of his enemy, and he passed on unharmed.

After some hours he came to a high hill. At the bottom was a large tent in which he knew, from the tale of the old man of the friendly village, that a wicked man lived with his two beautiful daughters. He knew too that they waited his coming, for prompted by the sorceress they wished to kill him. As he looked down from the top of the hill, he saw the two daughters approaching afar off. They were very beautiful and fair; but Glooskap remembered the old man’s warning and he resolved to be on his guard. One of them carried in her hands a string of costly beads. They met him with pleasant smiles and invited him to the tent below the hill; and they tried to place the beads about his neck to show him their great love. But Glooskap knew that the beads were enchanted, and that if he placed them around his neck he should lose his strength and power. So he set his dogs upon the girls, and the dogs were so terrible because of his magic belt that the girls ran away in great fear; as they ran, they dropped the string of beads, without which they had no power. Glooskap picked up the beads and then cautiously entered the tent of his enemies. On a couch of skins near the door the old man was dozing, and before he could rise, Glooskap placed the beads about his neck and killed him with a blow. Then he went on his way. He met with many enemies on this evil road, but by the aid of his dogs and his magic belt and the enchanted beads he overcame them all and was unharmed.

At last he reached the sea, and he looked over the dark water to another land and wondered how to get across. Finally, he sang the magic song that the whales always obeyed. Old Blob the whale came quickly to his call, and getting on her back he sailed away to the eastward. His two dogs swam close behind Old Blob. The whale soon brought him to the land where he knew that his people dwelt. He sprang ashore, his dogs following him, and set out with long rapid strides in search of his enemies. At the end of a few hours’ journey he found traces of old camp-fires, and he knew that his people were not far away. At last he reached the place where they were living. In the distance he saw a camp, which because of his magic power he knew to be that of the sorceress. Near by was his little brother, whom the wicked sorceress had made her slave; he was pale and much worn, and he was clad only in rags; he was seeking wood for a fire and as he gathered up the dry sticks he cried, and sang a song of lament,—”Where is Glooskap, my big brother? Alas! he is far away, and I shall never see him again.” Then Glooskap took pity on his little brother, and gave a signal that the little boy knew well. And his brother, turning around, spied Glooskap behind the trees afar off, and running to him cried out with joy, for he knew that help had at last come.

But Glooskap knew that to overcome his great enemy and to free his people, he must be very careful and use his craftiest tricks. He told his little brother to be silent, and to tell no one but Old Dame Bear, the grandmother, that he had come. He sent him back to his hard work in the camp, and promised that when the twilight came he should be freed. And he said, “Do what you can to make the wicked woman angry, for when anger comes to her, her power leaves her; when you are sent to rock her baby to sleep at twilight, snatch it from its cradle and throw it into the camp-fire. Then run to me where I hide here among the trees; take Dame Bear with you, and all will be well.”

His little brother then went back to his hard work in the woman’s tent and told Dame Bear what he had seen and heard. And the two waited patiently for the twilight. At the sunset hour the little boy, still supperless, was sent by the sorceress to rock her baby to sleep. For the first time in his long separation from his big brother he worked with joy, and without hunger, for he knew that he would soon be free. Suddenly he snatched from the cradle-hammock the woman’s baby,—a wicked child like her mother,—and hurled her into the camp-fire. Then, taking Dame Bear by the arm, he ran towards Glooskap’s hiding place. The baby howled with pain and cursed loudly as she had heard her mother do, and rolled herself out of the fire. And the sorceress was very angry, and muttering dire threats she ran after the boy and Dame Bear. They soon reached Glooskap, who sprang from his hiding place, his magic belt around him. When the sorceress saw Glooskap, she was more angry than before, so that her strength left her and she was powerless. Yet she gave battle.

Glooskap tore up a huge pine tree from its roots and hurled it at his enemy. It entered her side and stuck there, and although she tried with all her might she could not draw it out. Glooskap could now have killed her with a blow, but he did not wish to do that. He wanted to let her live in misery, and to give her a greater punishment than death. And so, yelling with pain and shame, the sorceress ran back to her tent, while Glooskap took Dame Bear and his little brother to his own camp among the trees and gave them food. He knew now that the battle was over, for it had long been known that if the wicked woman’s side was once pierced her power would never return.

When Glooskap’s people heard that he had come, they rejoiced greatly, for they were hungry and cold. The sorceress had failed to provide food for them, and they were tired of her wicked and cruel rule which was very unlike that of Glooskap. But Glooskap tarried before making friends again with them, and remained for many days in his own camp in the trees watching them from afar. His dogs guarded his grove and kept all away except Dame Bear and his little brother. Meanwhile, the wicked sorceress in pain with the pine tree in her side moved about in great anger, but as her power was now gone, the people refused longer to obey her. And they all laughed at her because of the pine tree sticking in her side. At last, being very angry, she said, “I do not wish to live like this when my power is gone. All the people laugh at me because of the pine tree sticking in my side. I wish that I might change to something that would always be a plague and a torment to man, for I hate mankind.” Glooskap heard her wish, although he was afar off, and with his magic power he changed her at once to a mosquito. Then he forgave his people, and as they were hungry he gave them much food and drink, for he had killed many moose in the land. And the people all rejoiced and promised never again to forsake him or to be jealous of his power.

Then Glooskap gathered his people on the shore of the great ocean, and calling the whales, his sea carriers, he bade them carry him and his people from this land back to their old home. There they settled down again in peace. But to this day the wicked sorceress roams over the earth as a mosquito; and the pine tree in her side is a sharp sting. She is never at rest, but she shall always remain as she wished, a torment to mankind. The only thing on earth she dreads is fire and smoke, for she still remembers that the throwing of her baby into the fire long ago caused the outburst of anger that in the end deprived her of her strength. And by fire and smoke in the summer twilight men still drive her and her descendants from their dwellings.

How Turtle Came, by Cyrus MacMillan

On the shores of a great water in Canada is a land where Indians once dwelt. In the days of French rule it was a garrisoned fort. The remains of the old moat and ramparts and stockade are still seen in the centre of what is now a large green meadow; but they are now overgrown with grass, and should you go there, on summer days you can see children playing upon them, picking wild flowers and making daisy chains, unmindful of the past fortunes of the spot on which they play. Behind you across the river which empties here is a city in modern dress. Before you is the sea with two little islands not far away resting in the summer haze upon its bosom. Moaning gas-buoys toss about in the gentle roll of the waters; by night red beacon lights lift their bright heads all about to light the sailor’s road; summer cottages nestle on the beach before you; the hum of modern life is in your ears and the sight of it is in your eyes as you stand to-day upon the cliff.

But it was not always so. Long before the coming of the white race, before beacon lights and cities and summer cottages were known, this land was the home of Indians. Many of their descendants live there still, at peace with the white folk who took their lands and their forests. They are the remnants of Glooskap’s people. It was here, on the beach in the little cove, that the Turtle was first created and where he first dwelt. Long ago, after the white men came, he fled from these waters; and although his descendants are still sometimes caught by fishermen off the coast, neither he nor his children nor any of his tribe ever went back to the place of his creation. But the place of his birth is still pointed out.

It was in Glooskap’s time that the Turtle came into being. There dwelt in the land an old Indian, a lazy, poor, and by no means beautiful man. As a hunter he had been of no value; he lived alone; and now he had come to the end of his life with little of the world’s goods to his credit. But although he was poor, he was of a merry heart and a good nature, and he was well liked by all. Now, the chief of the tribe had three beautiful daughters who were much sought for by the young men of the village, all of whom wished to win their love. The eldest was the loveliest in the land; her name was Flower of the Corn. The old Indian would gladly have made one of these girls his wife for he was tired of living alone, but she on her part thought him worthless, and he on his part feared that if he wooed her, her many other suitors would be jealous and would perhaps take his life. So the old man kept his secret to himself and continued his sad existence.

It happened that one day Glooskap came into the land to see his people. Of all the tents in the village he chose that of the old man as his resting place, for he had known him a long time and liked him because of his good nature and his merry heart. He was not with him long before he knew his secret, that he loved Flower of the Corn; and he also learned of his fear to woo her. Glooskap encouraged him and urged him to make his wishes known to the chief. But the old Indian said, “I am old and poor and I have no good clothes to wear, and I know that I should meet only with scorn.” But Glooskap placed upon him his magic belt, and at once the old man became young and handsome; he also gave him fine clothes. Then he sent him to the chief’s home. And the old man said, after the fashion of Indians when they wish to marry, “I am tired living alone. I have come for your eldest daughter.” And the old chief, when he saw him so beautiful because of Glooskap’s magic power, could not refuse his request and Flower of the Corn became his bride.

As the old man had feared, the young men of the village were very angry because he had won so beautiful a wife, and they resolved to do him harm. At first they tried to take vengeance on Glooskap, for as they had seen little of him they did not know of his great power. A great wedding feast was held for the old man and his bride, to which all the young men were invited. Two of the most jealous sat next to Glooskap, one on each side, and during the feast they plotted to kill him. But Glooskap heard them plotting against his life and he knew that the time had come for him to show his strength. So at the end of the wedding feast, as he arose from the table he turned to each one and tapped him gently on the nose. When each rubbed the spot that Glooskap had touched, he found that his nose had disappeared. In great shame and anger they fled from the feast, and never afterwards dwelt among men. One of these was Toad; the other was Porcupine. And since that time neither Toad nor Porcupine has ever had a nose and their faces have always been flat because of Glooskap’s touch at the banquet long ago.

Some days after the wedding feast, a great festival was held in the village. Glooskap knew that here again an attempt would be made upon the old Indian’s life by his jealous enemies. He feared too that after he had gone from the village his old friend would surely be treacherously killed, and, as the time of his going away was at hand, he resolved upon a plan to save him from danger. He told the old man that at the festival his enemies would try to trample him under their feet during a game of ball. And he gave him a magic root which, if he ate it before the game, would give him power to jump high when they crowded in upon him. Sure enough, in the game of ball the young men surrounded the old man and watched for a chance to crush him. Twice he jumped high over their heads and escaped unhurt. But the third time when he jumped he stuck upon the top of a tent and could not get down.

Inside the tent sat Glooskap quietly smoking his pipe and waiting for this very thing to happen. He made a smouldering fire from which the smoke rose in great clouds and passed out at the top of the tent around the old man, and he smoked and smoked great pipefuls of tobacco until far into the night. And the old man hung to the tent poles, dangling in the smoke until midnight. He hung there so long that from the smoke of the smouldering fire and that of Glooskap’s pipe, his old skin became as hard as a shell. And Glooskap said to him, “I have done this thing for your own good. I fear that if I leave you here, after I have gone your enemies will kill you. I make you now chief of the Tortoise race and your name shall be called Turtle; hereafter you may roll through a flame of fire and you will not be burned nor will you feel pain, and you may live in water or on land as you prefer. And you shall have a very long life; and although your head be cut off you shall live nine days afterwards. And when your enemies throw you into the fire or into the water you need have no fear.” Then he took him down from the tent pole.

The next day the old Indian’s enemies, angry because he had escaped at the festival, built a great fire in the forest, and seizing him as he walked alone in the woods, they threw him upon it. But he went to sleep in the flame and when he awoke he called for more wood, telling them that he was very cold. They wondered greatly, and after plotting together they resolved to throw him into the sea. They carried him far out in a canoe and dropped him overboard, and went ashore well pleased with their work, for they believed that at last they had taken vengeance. The next day was a day of great heat. At low tide when some of his enemies looked out to sea they saw basking in the sun on a sand-bar far away a strange figure. They were curious, and they rowed out to see what it was that shone so brightly in the sun. When they reached the sand-bar after paddling a long time they saw that it was the old Indian. There he was, sunning himself on the sand-bar, his hard smoked back shining in the bright light. As they came near, he said, “Good day,” and grinning at them mischievously, he rolled lazily off the sand-bar and disappeared in the water.

Glooskap before he left the island, used his magic power to change Flower of the Corn in the same way and he sent her into the sea to live with her husband. And he gave her power to lay eggs in the sand. And the two lived happily for many long years, and raised up a mighty race. But still the Turtle rolls sideways into the sea like his old ancestor if men come near him as he suns himself on the sand. And you can still see on his back the marks of Glooskap’s smoke. When the white men came, he left the land of his creation, but his descendants to this day live to a great age and grow to a great size along the Atlantic coast.

How Summer Came to Canada, by Cyrus MacMillan

Once during Glooskap’s lifetime and reign in Canada it grew very cold. Everywhere there was snow and ice, and in all the land there was not a flower nor a leaf left alive. The fires that the Indians built could not bring warmth. The food supply was slowly eaten up, and the people were unable to grow more corn because of the hard frozen ground. Great numbers of men and women and children died daily from cold and hunger, and it seemed as if the whole land must soon perish.

Over this extreme cold Glooskap had no power. He tried all his magic, but it was of no avail. For the cold was caused by a powerful giant who came into the land from the far North, bringing Famine and Death as his helpers. Even with his breath he could blight and wither the trees, so that they brought forth no leaves nor fruit; and he could destroy the corn and kill man and beast. The giant’s name was Winter. He was very old and very strong, and he had ruled in the far North long before the coming of man. Glooskap, being brave and wishing to help his people in their need, went alone to the giant’s tent to try to coax or bribe or force him to go away. But even he, with all his magic power, at once fell in love with the giant’s home; for in the sunlight it sparkled like crystal and was of many wonderful colours, but in the night under the moonlight it was spotlessly white. From the tent, when Glooskap looked out, the face of the earth was beautiful. The trees had a covering of snow that gave them strange fantastic shapes. The sky was filled by night with flashing quivering lights, and even the stars had a new brightness. The forest, too, was full of mysterious noises. Glooskap soon forgot his people amid his new surroundings. The giant told him tales of olden times when all the land was silent and white and beautiful like his sparkling tent. After a time the giant used his charm of slumber and inaction, until Glooskap fell asleep, for the charm was the charm of the Frost. For six months he slept like a bear. Then he awoke, for he was very strong and Winter could not kill him even in his sleep. But when he arose he was hungry and very tired.

One day soon after he awoke, his tale-bearer, Tatler the Loon, brought him good news. He told of a wonderful Southland, far away, where it was always warm, and where lived a Queen who could easily overcome the giant; indeed, she was the only one on earth whose power the giant feared. Loon described carefully the road to the new country. Glooskap, to save his people from Winter and Famine and Death, decided to go to the Southland and find the Queen. So he went to the sea, miles away, and sang the magic song that the whales obeyed. His old friend Blob the Whale came quickly to his call, and getting on her back he sailed away. Now, the whale always had a strange law for travellers. She said to Glooskap: “You must shut your eyes tight while I carry you; to open them is dangerous, for, if you do, I will surely go aground on a reef or a sand bar and cannot get off, and you may then be drowned.” And Glooskap promised to keep his eyes shut. Many days the whale swam, and each day the water grew warmer, and the air grew gentler and sweeter, for it came from spicy shores; and the smells were no longer those of the salt sea, but of fruits and flowers and pines. Soon they saw in the sky by night the Southern Cross. They found, too, that they were no longer in the deep sea, but in shallow water flowing warm over yellow sands, and that land lay not far ahead. Blob the Whale now swam more cautiously. Down in the sand the clams were singing a song of warning, telling travellers in these strange waters of the treacherous sand bar beneath. “Oh, big whale,” they sang, “keep out to sea, for the water here is shallow and you shall come to grief if you keep on to shore.” But the whale did not understand the language of the little clams. And he said to Glooskap, who understood, “What do they sing?” But Glooskap, wishing to land at once, answered, “They tell you to hurry for a storm is coming,—to hurry along as fast as you can.” Then the whale hurried until she was soon close to the land. Glooskap, wishing the whale to go aground so that he could more easily walk ashore, opened his left eye and peeped, which was contrary to the whale’s laws. And at once the whale stuck hard and fast on the beach, so that Glooskap, springing from her head, walked ashore on dry land. The whale, thinking that she could never get off, was very angry, and sang a song of lament and blame. But Glooskap put one end of his strong bow against the whale’s jaw, and taking the other end in his hands, he placed his feet against the high bank, and, with a mighty push, he sent old Blob again into the deep water. Then, to keep the whale’s friendship, he threw her an old pipe and a bag of Indian tobacco leaves—for Glooskap was a great smoker—and the whale, greatly pleased with the gift, lighted the pipe and smoking it swam far out to sea. Glooskap watched her disappear from view until he could see only clouds of her smoke against the sky. And to this day the whale has Glooskap’s old pipe, and sailors often see her rise to the surface to smoke it in peace and to blow rings of tobacco smoke into the air.

When the whale had gone, Glooskap walked with great strides far inland. Soon he found the way of which Loon had told him. It was the Rainbow Road that led to the Wilderness of Flowers. It lay through the land of the Sunrise, beautiful and fresh in the morning light. On each side were sweet magnolias and palms, and all kinds of trees and flowers. The grass was soft and velvety, for by night the dew was always on it; and snow and hail were unknown, and winds never blew coldly, for here the charm of the Frost had no power.

Glooskap went quickly along the flower-lined Rainbow Road, until he came to an orange grove where the air was sweet with the scent of blossoms. Soon he heard sounds of music. He peered through the trees, and saw that the sounds came from an open space not far ahead, where the grass was soft and where tiny streams were flowing and making melody. It was lilac-time in the land, and around the open space all kinds of flowers in the world were blooming. On the trees numberless birds were singing—birds of wonderfully coloured feathers such as Glooskap had never heard or seen before. He knew that he had reached at last the Wilderness of Flowers, of which old Tatler the Loon had spoken. He drew deep breaths of honeysuckle and heliotrope and countless other flowers, until he soon grew strong again after his long voyage.

Then he crept close to the edge of the open space and looked in from behind the trees. On the flower-covered grass within, many fair maidens were singing and dancing, holding in their hands chains of blossoms, like children in a Maypole game. In the centre of the group was one fairer than all the others—the most beautiful creature he had ever seen,—her long brown hair crowned with flowers and her arms filled with blossoms. For some time Glooskap gazed in silence, for he was too surprised to move or to utter speech. Then he saw at his side an old woman,—wrinkled and faded, but still beautiful,—like himself watching the dance. He found his voice and asked, “Who are those maidens in the Wilderness of Flowers?” And the old woman answered, “The maiden in the centre of the group is the Fairy Queen; her name is Summer; she is the daughter of the rosy Dawn,—the most beautiful ever born; the maidens dancing with her are her children, the Fairies of Light and Sunshine and Flowers.”

Glooskap knew that here at last was the Queen who by her charms could melt old Winter’s heart and force him to go away, for she was very beautiful and good. With his magic song he lured her from her children into the dark forest; there he seized her and held her fast by a crafty trick. Then, with her as a companion, he began his long return journey north by land. That he might know the way back to the Wilderness of Flowers, he cut a large moose hide, which he always carried, into a long slender cord, and as he ran north with Summer, he let the cord unwind behind him, for he had no time to mark the trail in the usual way. When they had gone, Summer’s children mourned greatly for their Queen. For weeks the tears ran down their cheeks like rain on all the land, and for a long time, old Dawn, the Queen’s mother, covered herself with dark mourning clouds and refused to be bright.

After many days, still holding Summer in his bosom—for she loved him because of his magic power—Glooskap reached the Northland. He found none of his people, for they were all asleep under the giant’s power, and the whole country was cold and lonely. At last he came to the home of old Winter. The giant welcomed him and the beautiful girl, for he hoped to freeze them both and keep them with him always. For some time they talked together in the tent, but, although he tried hard, the giant was unable to put them to sleep. Soon old Winter felt that his power had vanished and that the charm of the Frost was broken. Large drops of sweat ran down his face; then his tent slowly disappeared, and he was left homeless. Summer used her strange power until everything that Winter had put to sleep awoke again. Buds came again upon the trees; the snow ran down the rivers, carrying away the dead leaves; and the grass and the corn sprang up with new life. And old Winter, being sorrowful, wept, for he knew that his reign was ended, and his tears were like cold rain. Summer, the Queen, seeing him mourn and wishing to stop his tears, said: “I have proved that I am more powerful than you; I give you now all the country to the far north for your own, and there I shall never disturb you; you may come back to Glooskap’s country six months of every year and reign as of old, but you will be less severe; during the other six months, I myself will come from the south and rule the land.” Old Winter could do nothing but accept this offer gracefully, for he feared that if he did not he would melt entirely away. So he built a new home farther north, and there he reigns without interruption. In the late autumn he comes back to Glooskap’s country and reigns for six months, but his rule is softer than in olden times. And when he comes, Summer, following Glooskap’s moose-hide cord, runs home with her birds to the Wilderness of Flowers. But at the end of six months she always comes back to drive old Winter away to his own land, to awaken the northern world, and to bring it the joys that only she, the Queen, can give. And so, in Glooskap’s old country Winter and Summer, the hoary old giant and the beautiful Fairy Queen, divide the rule of the land between them.