Tradition of the Koskimo.
(Dictated by Yâ'gôLas, a ?nE'mgês, 1900.)
The Koskimo were always killed by the Xô'yalas, and they were only a few. Then a man went to hide his child when all his other children were dead. X*â'nElku was the only child of the man. There were three,--he and his wife and his child. "Make a bird-arrow for me," said X*â'nElku. Then his father made a bird-arrow for X*â'nElku, and X*â'nElku shot a wren. He obtained many (wrens), and they were sewed together for a blanket for X*â'nElku. Then he started and went to the other side of the beach to shoot, and he came home carrying a mink. Then he came again carrying a raccoon; and the next day he came home again, and he had obtained one mink. Every time the blanket of X*â'nElku became small. "It is very important, what happens to the blanket of our child," said the father of X*â'nElku. "Let me go and hide behind our child."
Then the father of X*â'nElku started. Whenever X*â'nElku disappeared behind the point, his father would run to look for him. Then he disappeared again behind the point, and his father ran to look for his child. Then X*â'nElku was in the direction towards the sea, and he saw a mink; then the mink went under a stone. X*â'nElku went from side to side, trying to get the mink. Then two wolves came. His father only looked on. The wolves took hold at both ends of the cape, and bit at both ends of the cape of X*â'nElku. The child did not take notice of the wolves. Then the mink came out from under the stone, and the mink got away. Then the wolf ran and bit the mink, and it was dead; and he put it down from his
mouth on the beach, and left it. Then the wolves went home, and X*â'nElku also went home. His cape which had been bitten by the wolves was small. Then his father ran. "Behold! that is what happens to our child. Therefore the cape of our child disappears rapidly. Let us be careful. Behold! something terrible happened to our child." X*â'nElku came home carrying the mink. Then he was fed and given to eat. "Now you shall stop shooting," said the father of the child. They went to sleep. "Let our child be between us in the house." Then he tied up his house, and they went to sleep. The father held the child in his arms, and the mother also held the child in her arms. They watched him during the night.
Then they went to sleep. The father of the child awoke. "Slave," he said, "stop sleeping!" Thus he said to his wife. "Evidently our child has been taken away. Evidently something dreadful has happened." Then the man searched on the floor of his house. There was no hole through it. He did not know where his child had gone through. Then his wife cried. "Don't cry, slave! Perhaps our child will become supernatural. Bear it with fortitude. Don't cry!"
Then X*â'nElku was taken along by the two wolves. He lay on his stomach on them. They went to a far Country. Then he heard the noise of people. "Yä," said what was heard. X*â'nElku was told, "Don't look at it! That is causing potlatch when it is seen." Then they came to many people who were shouting. They finished. "This is left by potlatching," said the Wolves. They started. Then he heard laughing. "Don't look that way, X*â'nElku! This is causing potlatch when it is seen. That is the laughing-dance." Then is was thrown among them. They laughed, and rolled about on the ground laughing. Then it was taken back.
They started. Then they heard shouting. Then they
arrived. "Don't look this. way, X*â'nElku! That is causing potlatch when it is seen. That is the cohabiting dance." Then it was thrown among them. Then all the men and the women began to cohabit. They were breathing heavily. Then it was taken back.
Then X*â'nElku started, and they arrived there. "Don't look that way, X*â'nElku. That is causing potlatch when it is seen. Those are the Land-Otters." And it was thrown among them; and they rolled about on the ground with mud on their bodies, and they were grunting at the same time. Then it was taken back.
Then X*â'nElku started, and they arrived there. "X*â'nElku, don't look this way! This is causing potlatch when it is seen. This is the mosquito dance." Then it was thrown among them, and the men scratched their heads. Then they were very big. Then it was taken back. Now they were well, and became men.
Then they started, and they arrived at the house of the Wolves. He (X*â'nElku) was taken into the house of the chief, and he was taken care of by the Wolves. Then it was asked, "What does our friend wish?"--"He wants supernatural power."--"This word of our friend is good."--"He wants a wife from among the daughters of our chief." Then he said, "Does he not only take the one he likes for his wife?" Then (the chief) called his children. They sat down, and sat in a row. "Where is the one desired by our friend? Is it not this eldest one"'--"He does not want her," said the one who just hears the thoughts of men. Does he not want this middle one?"--"He does not want her."--"Does he not want the other one?"--"Not this one, either."--"Does he not want this youngest one?"--"That is the one desired by him." Then he married her.
"Go on, you shall move and be with her."--"Does he
not want this potlatch-pole?"--"He does not want this," said the Listener, who hears the ways of our thoughts. "Does he not want this death-bringer?"--"He does not want it."--"Does he not want this water of life?"--"He does not want it."--"Does he not want this destroying crazy-making death-bringer?"--"That is desired by him."
They were in the house for a long time. (Then he said,) "I desire to go now." Then the wife of X*â'nElku told her father about it. "This my husband feels badly."--"Indeed, he does," said the father of the child. "Shall he not go?" Then he called his tribe. "This is the reason I want you to come, for the husband of my child here wishes to go;--and he shall go, Quick-Spark;--and he shall go, Quick-Raindrop;--and he shall go, Quick-Stonethrow." Then they said, "Shall we not start? It does not take a long time when he goes. "We will go," they said. "We will go around the edges of our world."
Then all the different kinds of wolves came. "Welcome!" said the father-in-law of X*â'nElku. "This is the reason why I call you, that you may go and take our son-in-law out of the woods, and this death-bringer shall go at the same time. Don't use it often. You may use it against four tribes. Just blow from time to time when you desire that they shall sleep whom you wish to take, and against whom you make war. Now your name shall be Wolf. Now take the death-bringer out of the woods." Thus Quick-Spark and Quick-Raindrop were told, and he was tied on the backs of Quick-Spark and Quick-Raindrop.
Then they started, and it was not long before they came back. "We took time to twist cedar-twigs to tie him with." Then Wolf was taken out of the woods to his house. He carried his death-bringer, and showed it to his father. "My supernatural treasure has come! shall
we not then strike back at those who killed our tribe, and those who would have been my brothers?" Then he launched his canoe and went to his tribe to make war. Then his tribe launched their canoes, and eight canoes paddled. They were going to make war against the Xô'yalas.
Then they arrived at North-People. Then the death-bringer desired to go out, wanting to eat North-People. "Don't, my dear!" said Wolf, "that is our tribe." Then they paddled. Then they came to the G*â'p!ênoxu. Then he desired to go out to eat them. "Don't, my dear!" said Wolf, "that is our tribe." Thus he said to his death-bringer. Then they paddled, and came to Cut-Beach. Then he heard beating of batons. They arrived at night. The Xô'yalas were having a winter dance. He just stopped in front of the village on the water. Then he blew on his sleep-bringer. Then they stopped on the water to listen to the sound of beating time. Very quickly the noise became less. Then they heard that only two sticks were beating, and now the beating of time stopped.
Then Wolf arose in his canoe. He sang a sacred song. Then he was silent. "Later on you shall go out of the canoe, when I have found four [?]." Then Wolf stepped out of his canoe, and saw those who had performed the winter ceremonial. All those who had performed the winter ceremonial were asleep. Only the legs of the children were in the cradles. They held the breasts of their mothers in their mouths. Then Wolf went along searching in the village. He went to the last house at the end. Then he began to sing his sacred song, and he found the [?]. Then all the men went out of the canoes to look at those who had performed the winter ceremonial; and they left them and launched their canoes,
taking on board all kinds of food. They carried aboard the men and the women as slaves, and also his relatives. Then all the men related to him were on board.
Then many canoes in which were warriors were on the water. Then Wolf Swung his death-bringer, and the village of the Xô'yalas took fire. They were all gone. Not one was alive. They were all burned. Then the warriors went home. They arrived at their house. Their slaves were many.
Then the death-bringer of Wolf was hungry. He engaged his tribe to go to the place named Having-Olachen to war against the DEna'x*da?xu, to take from them their land. They launched their canoes,--eight hunting-canoes,--and they came along paddling. They came to Dzô'dzad. Then it desired to go out to eat the Seaward-Dwellers. "Don't, my dear!" said Wolf, "that is our tribe." Thus said Wolf. They were a long time at Dzô'dzad. The southwest wind continued for ten days at the south entrance of Dzô'dzad. Then the death-bringer was very hungry. It was moving all the time. Wolf tried to hold his death-bringer, but he could not do it. It was too strong. Then his death-bringer flew away. It came near a mountain and made it burn. Then he went home feeling badly. His heart was sick. That is the end.