Page:Tlingit Myths and Texts.djvu/19

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5
TLINGIT MYTHS AND TEXTS

After this Raven went on again and came to a large town where were people who had never seen daylight. They were out catching eulachon in the darkness when he came to the bank opposite, and he asked them to take him across but they would not. Then he said to them, "If you don t come over I will have daylight break on you." But they answered, "Where are you from? Do you come from far up the Nass where lives the man who has daylight?" At this Raven opened his box just a little and shed so great a light on them that they were nearly thrown down. He shut it quickly, but they quarreled with him so much across the creek that he became angry and opened the box completely, when the sun flew up into the sky. Then those people who had sea-otter or fur-seal skins, or the skins of any other sea animals, went into the ocean, while those who had land-otter, bear, or marten skins, or the skins of any other land animals, went into the woods [becoming the animals whose skins they wore].

Raven came to another place where a crowd of boys were throwing fat at one another. When they hit him with a piece he swallowed it. After a while he took dog s manure and threw at the boys who became scared, ran away, and threw more fat at him. He consumed all in this way, and started on again.

After a while he came to an abandoned camp where lay a piece of jade (s!ū) half buried in the ground, on which some design had been pecked. This lie dug up. Far out in the bay he saw a large spring salmon jumping about and wanted to get it but did not know how. Then he stuck his stone into the ground and put eagle down upon the head designed thereon. The next time the salmon jumped, he said, "See here, spring salmon jumping out there, do you know what this green stone is saying to you? It is saying, You thing with dirty, filthy back, you thing with dirty, filthy gills, come ashore here."

Raven suddenly wanted to defecate and started off. Just then the big spring salmon also started to come ashore, so Raven said, "Just wait, my friend, don't come ashore yet for I have some business to attend to." So the salmon went out again. Afterward Raven took a piece of wild celery (yāʼnaet), and, when the salmon did come ashore, he struck it with this and killed it. Because Raven made this jade talk to the salmon, people have since made stone axes, picks, and spears out of it.

Then Raven, carrying along the spring salmon, got all kinds of birds, little and big, as his servants. When he came to a good place to cook his fish he said to all of them, "Here, you young fellows, go after skunk cabbage. We will bury this in the ground and roast it." After they had brought it down, however, he said, "I don't want any of that. My wife has defecated all over that, and I will not use it. Go back and pass over two mountains." While they were gone,