Left Handed, Son of Old Man Hat: A Navajo Autobiography

By Left Handed; Walter Dyk | Go to book overview

10. They start a farm at Anything Falls In . . . Rumors of War . . . The Utes pass by, and he trades a horse for a gun . . . Flight before the troops . . . Old Man Hat heads a party of peace.

SOON spring had come, and the grass began getting green, and the weather was warm. Then we moved toward the mountain. Against the hills, where the sun struck, different weeds and grasses had got green. Around the base of the rocks and under the trees, wherever there was a warm spot, the things were good and green. I had the cattle there, and every time I went out herding I rode the tame cow. Sometimes I put the saddle on her. Not long after we moved this cow had a calf, and the calf was a female. That belonged to my father. I was sorry for the calf, because it didn't belong to us. I wondered if our cow would have a calf just like this one. I was wishing for a calf that was still to be born and praying she'd have a female. A few days later our cow had a little one too, and that was a female, and that was ours. I was happy that we had four females. But even though we had a calf of our own I was still sorry for the other one and the cow, because that was a good-looking cow and calf, and the cow was tame.

When the calves were good and strong they said, "We'd better move down off the mountain to the valley, because our moccasin soles won't last long up here. It's too rough; there are too many rocks. We'd keep on making moccasins all the time, putting back new soles, and we haven't any. So

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