15. THE GIRL WHO MARRED A STAR.*

Long ago there lived a large family--father, mother, and eight children, four girls and four boys. They were all beautiful children, especially one of the girls, who was exceptionally beautiful. The time came when three of the girls were married, but the youngest and most beautiful would not receive the attention of any one. The girl was peculiar in her tastes and roamed around alone. She wished to go away somewhere, for she was tired of her home. One time while she was walking alone she began praying to the spirits to help her, that she might go wherever she wished. That night she was outside the lodge watching the stars, and she found that the stars were not all alike; that some were bright and some were very dim. Finally she saw one, the North Star, that was very bright, and then again she began to pray to the spirits to help her, and she wished that she might marry the star and become his wife. She ceased praying and did not know where she was for a while, and the first thing she saw was a very old man sitting by the fireside with his head down. She stood for a long while watching him. At first she could not believe herself, and she thought that she was only dreaming, but finally the old man looked up at her and said: "You are the young woman who wished to marry me and you have your wish; you are now in my home as my wife, as you wished." She did not like the looks of the old man, and she wished that she might get away from him; but her wish was not granted and she had to stay. She tried many ways to get away, but all failed, and she was about to give up when she thought of a great big round stone that the Star had told her not to move, for it was very dangerous to move it. One time when the Star was away on a visit she thought she would go over and lift the stone and see what was there. She lifted the stone and found that she could look clear down to the earth, and then she began to wonder how she could get down to the earth. She put the stone back in its place, and when the Star came back he asked her where she had been, and she told him that she had been at home all the time. When night came she went to bed, and as she was wondering how to get down to the earth she thought about making a long rope out of soapweeds, for she had heard the old story about the people making such a rope long ago. When the Star went away for his nightly trip she would go out and cut soapweeds; but when he came back he would always find her at home, and so he never thought of her doing anything of the kind. Finally she had enough weeds cut, and then she began to make the rope. It took her a long while before she had the rope finished.

____________________
*
*Told by Annie Wilson.
*
*

-29-

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