Native American Legends of the Animal People
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From the NY Times and USA Today Best Selling Author comes a delightful book for children.
Based on the Huckleberry Feast—a traditional Native American Thanksgivings ceremony of the Pacific Northwest--this story tells of how different Animal People gather together to celebrate. Details about the Huckleberry Feast and other rituals are explored and their importance to Plateau Native culture are discussed. The story then expands to Native American legends of how the different Animal People came to be the way they are today. The stories give the answer to such questions as: How did Chipmunk get his stripes? What happened when Rabbit cheated? How did the animals steal fire? The book is richly illustrated with both whimsical drawings of the Animal People as well as examples of the different Native American cultural items described in the text. A heart-warming choice to read to children at bedtime from an award-winning author.
. Why Chipmunk Has Stripes
. How Duck Got His Beautiful Feathers
. How Animals Stole Fire
. Raccoon And His Grandmother
. The Mouse Sister Who Stole The Roots
. The Bone Game
. Mouse Boy Learns To Dance
Raccoon and His Grandmother
Long ago, Raccoon was very lazy and didn’t want to do any work. His grandmother asked him to go fetch some water and handed him a basket to take down to the stream and fill. As he walked to the stream, he thought about how heavy the basket would be once it was full.
Raccoon didn’t want to carry a heavy basket.
He took one of his sharp claws and dug a hole into the side of the basket. He dipped the basket into the water. When he filled it, the water started to leak out as he walked back to his grandmother. When he handed it to his grandmother, it was less than half full.
“Oh, I need more than this,” she said. She sent him back to get more. On the way there he used his sharp claw again and dug a hole even lower on the side of the basket. When he returned it to his grandmother, there was less than a cup of the water left.
Frustrated, she sent him out again. He dug a hole even deeper on the side and when he returned the water had leaked out so much there was barely a thimble full of water left. When she lifted the basket up to take a drink, there was so little water, she mostly swallowed leaves that had been left in the basket as the water leaked out. She began to cough and choke on the leaves.
“Hurry,” she told him, her voice rough and scratchy. “I need water! Hurry!” She handed him the basket and he went to the stream. This time he dug a hole in the bottom of the basket, so when he returned it to his grandmother, there was no water left in the basket at all.
“Cough, cough, cough,” his grandmother was choking so badly! “Cough, cough—Kaw! Kaw!” Her harsh voice began to turn into a terrible cry and she turned into a crow. Then she flew away and Raccoon realized he was now all alone.