57. COYOTE IMITATES HIS HOST.*

In the days of old, when animals were like people and talked and visited each other, Coyote and Raven were great friends. One day after Coyote had grown weary of hunting for game and finding none, he went up to the top of the mountain to see his friend Raven. Raven had control of the buffalo and was always seen with the herds. (Now, since the buffalo has gone from the earth, Raven has disappeared and is seldom seen any more.) Raven invited Coyote to enter, and when he saw Coyote weary and sad and silent he arose, took an arrow, shot it up into the air, and then stood waiting for it to come down. It came down and pierced him under the right arm. He drew the arrow out and with it came buffalo meat and fat. He gave the meat to Coyote, who ate heartily. Then Coyote smacked his mouth, arose, and said that he must be going, but before he went he gave Raven an urgent invitation to come over and make him a visit, and Raven promised to come.

When Coyote went home he began making a bow and arrow, and when he had finished them he put them away until Raven should visit him. One day Raven bethought himself of his promise, and so he left his home in haste to pay Coyote a visit. Coyote received him with joy. After they had talked about many things Coyote said: "I have no meat, for I did not expect you, but if you will wait I will soon have some for you." Coyote took his bow and arrow and shot the arrow into the sky, then stood waiting for it to come down. Raven watched him and said never a word. The arrow came down and struck in Coyote's thigh. He ran away screaming with pain and left his guest alone. Raven waited a while and then went home without any meat, but in very high spirits notwithstanding, for Coyote's performance amused him greatly and he chuckled to himself as often as he thought of it. Coyote continued to run until he pulled the arrow out of his thigh; then he took the arrow and broke it to pieces. He never went back to see Raven, and time passed on and none of Coyote's friends saw him, and they all wondered what had become of him. At last he grew so hungry that he had to go out for food. He found none, and so he went to visit another one of his friends, for he had many. Black-Mountain-Bear received him graciously when he came to his home and asked him in. Bear said: "I regret that I have no meat to offer you." As he spoke he leaned against a persimmon tree that was weighted down with many ripe persimmons, and as he leaned against the tree the ripe fruit fell to the ground. Bear smiled and asked his friend to eat. Coyote ate many,

____________________
*
Told by Wing.

-93-

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