Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 16, 1905.djvu/388

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^2,8 Collectanea,

left armpit, with his salmon rod and his "knocker," to kill his fish, all ready. Suddenly a great salmon leapt to his fly, and there was a long fight, in which at last he got the better, and the big fish was flapping in the coracle between his feet with the hook through its upper jaw on the left. He took his club and said, " Now, I will knock thee." When the fish reared itself against his leg, and spoke with a faint human voice, as it were the voice of a babe, and said, " No, do not knock me, be my cariad (lover), and I will be thine." "No," said he, trembling with amazement, "thou art a devil, and I will knock thee," raising his arm to strike. But before the blow could fall he found himself in the arms of a beautiful girl, but cold and wet, who knelt between his feet, but her face was against his and her eyes were asking him, and she said, " Be my cariad'^ " No," said he, " thou art a devil, I will knock thee." " Then I will drown thee," said she, bending him over with all her strength ; so they capsized. Then the girl plunged him deep in the river and brought him up sputtering, for he could not swim. "Wilt thou be my cariad}" said she.

" No," said he, " thou art a d ." " Then down you go yti

ngivaelod yr avon (to the bottom of the river)," said she, and down they went. Up again she brought him, panting. " Wilt thou be my cariad}'^ said she. "No," he said, "by — ." The word was drowned in his mouth. She forced him down again into the weeds at the bottom. Then she plucked him up again. "Now, wilt thou be my cariad} " The lad was almost drowned, and said "Yea." At that she was delighted, and wrung him in her arms, and swam with him with her feet to the shore. And the coracle went down the stream and the rod too, but that was held to her by the hook and line, for the hook was in her upper lip. So when he came to his strength he had with him a gel without a stitch of clothes on her. Oh, a beautiful gel as white as a salmon, trying to get a hook out of her lip. So he says, " Pity, I will get it out," but he could not pull it through. " I must cut thee," he said, and took out his little knife. " Yea," said she, " cut me," and he cut the hook out carefully and she did not wince, but kissed him suddenly on the mouth, so that her blood was upon his face. " Now thou has taken of my blood thou wilt love me for ever," she said, and at the word there came a violent love for