The Traditions of the Hopi by H. R. Voth
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89. THE BADGER AND THE SMALL GRAY MICE. 1
Long ago the Badger and the Small Gray Mice (Tucán homihtci) were Hopi, but they were very bad and hence became these two animals. They were both doctors. The Badger doctor cured people mostly by herbs, of which he made decoctions and lotions, etc. The Mice effected their cures by singing, rattling, rubbing, and by kneading the bodies, scraping the skins, and by other means of sorcery. These two were rivals, and the Badger doubted whether his rival, the Mouse, really knew anything about diseases and medicine, so he decided to try him. One time he fasted for four days and four nights, and when he had become very weak he sent for his rival, the Mouse. The latter brought with him a rattle, a buckskin, in which he had some medicines wrapped up, and also a small medicine bowl. In the latter he made a mixture containing different medicines. This he placed beside the couch where the Old Man Badger was lying and then sang the following song, accompanying it with his rattle:
Uma wurz, Tusan-Homihtci,
You, of course, a small gray mouse,
Badger Old Man,
The Tucan Mouse a medicine man heart
(That) something (in order) to find out,
Four days (you) fasted.
Aâyoooo, âyoâyo, âyoâyo.
After he was through singing he told his rival, the Old Man Badger, that he should eat well and then he would get well, and then laughingly left. The Old Man Badger was astonished and said to himself: "I did not know that he could look inside of me. He is certainly a great doctor." Hereupon he ordered something to eat and got well.
228:1 Told by Lomávântiwa (Shupaúlavi).
Next: 90. The Mice, the Owl, and the Hawk