Sacred Texts  Africa  Index  Previous  Next 

Specimens of Bushman Folklore, by W.H.I. Bleek and L.C. Lloyd, [1911], at


They (the Bushmen) wish, that they may also perceive things.[1] Therefore, they say that the Star shall take their heart, with which they do not a little hunger; the Star shall give them the Star's heart, the Star's heart,--with which the Star sits in plenty. For the Star is not small; the Star seems as if it had food. Therefore, they say, that the Star shall give them of the Star's heart, that they may not hunger.

The Stars are wont to call, "Tsau! Tsau!" therefore the Bushmen are wont to say, that the Stars curse for them the springboks' eyes; the Stars say, "Tsau!" they say, "Tsau! Tsau!" I am one who was listening to them. I questioned my grandfather (Tsatsi), what things it could be that spoke thus. My grandfather said to me that the Stars were those who spoke thus. The Stars were those who said, Tsau! while they cursed for the people

[1. i.e. things which their dogs may kill.]

the springboks' eyes. Therefore, when I grew up, I was listening to them. The Stars said, "Tsau! Tsau!" Summer is (the time) when they sound.

Because I used to sleep with my grandfather, I was the one who sat with my grandfather, when he sat in the coolness outside. Therefore) I questioned him, about the things which spoke thus. He said, the Stars were those who spoke thus; they cursed for the people the springboks' eyes.[1]

My grandfather used to speak to Canopus, when Canopus had newly come out; he said: "Thou shalt give me thy heart, with which thou dost sit in plenty, thou shalt take my heart,--my heart,--with which I am desperately hungry. That I might also be full, like thee. For, I hunger. For, thou seemest to be satisfied (with food); hence thou art not small. For, I am hungry. Thou shalt give me thy stomach, with which thou art satisfied. Thou shalt take my stomach, that thou mayst also hunger. Give thou me also thy arm, thou shalt take my arm, with which I do not kill. For, I miss my aim. Thou shalt give me thy arm. For, my arm which is here, I miss my aim with it." He desired that the arrow might hit the springbok for him; hence, he wished the Star to give him the Star's arm, while the Star took his arm, with which he missed his aim.

He shut his mouth, he moved away, he sat down; while he felt that he wished to sit and sharpen an arrow.

[1. I think that it was all the springbok.]


Next: !Ko-G!nuing-Tara, Wife Of The Dawn's-Heart Star, Jupiter.