The Traditions of the Hopi by H. R. Voth
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78. THE COYOTE AND THE GRASSHOPPERS. 1
Alíksai! The people were living in Shongópavi. North of the village (about three miles), was a bluff in which a Sparrow-hawk had his house (nest). A short distance (about half a mile), north of Shongópavi was a sand hill in which lived many Grasshoppers. These the Sparrow-hawk relished very much and was constantly watching them. When he would see the little Grasshoppers jumping about, he would swoop down on them and carry them to his children, who would quickly devour them. There were ten Grasshopper children, all of whom the Sparrow-hawk killed, one after another. When they were all gone their parents mourned over the loss of their children.
At this juncture a Coyote came along, saying to the Grasshopper mother: "You are singing nicely. Sing to me, too." "No," she insisted, "I am not singing, I am crying. This Sparrow-hawk killed all my children and I am crying." But the Coyote would not listen, and said: "If you do not sing to me I will devour you." Hereupon the Grasshopper mother repeated her song:
Wala, wala, chochon nacomta,
Tumaci kele nanakavoo
Uy, uy, h- h- h- (with a rising inflection to represent sobbing).
The Coyote at once ran away singing the song of the Grasshopper. Arriving at a rock he stumbled over it and fell down, losing by that the song. He tried to sing it again but was just able to say the first syllable, Wa, Wa. So he returned to the place where he had left the Grasshopper woman, the latter, however, had also left the place immediately after the departure of the Coyote, leaving in her place a stone that resembled the form of the Grasshopper. Arriving at this stone the Coyote said, "I have forgotten my song, sing it to me again," but received no reply. "If you do not sing I shall devour you," he said, ''but still receiving no reply he grabbed the stone and broke his teeth. The blood was running from his mouth. In this condition he ran about to hunt food, but even when he found some he could not eat it as he had no teeth, and so finally he perished with hunger.
211:1 Told by Lomávântiwa (Shupaúlavi).
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