Page:The Melanesians Studies in their Anthropology and Folklore.djvu/420

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Stories.

the leaf of a yam touches her there are yams as if someone had already dug them up, and if a leaf of a banana again had touched her. just a single one, all the bananas were ripe at once. But when Qat's mother saw that things were so she scolded her; but not Qat; he was gone shooting birds. And when Qat's mother scolded her she went back into the village; and she sits beside the post of the house and cries. And as she cried her tears flowed down upon the ground and made a deep hole; and the tears drop down and strike upon her wings, and she scratches away the earth and finds them, and flies back again to heaven. And when Qat was come home from shooting he sees that she is not there, and scolds his mother. Then he kills every one of his pigs, and fastens points to very many arrows, and climbs up on the top of his house, and shoots up to the sky. And when he sees that the arrow does not fall back he shoots again and hits the first arrow. And he shoots many times, and always hits, and the arrows reach down to the earth. And, behold, there is a banyan root following the arrows, and Qat takes a basket of pig's flesh in his hand and climbs up to heaven to seek his wife. And he finds a person hoeing; and he finds his wife and takes her back; and he says to the person who is hoeing, When you see a banyan root don't disturb it. But as the two went down by the banyan root and had not yet reached the ground, that person chopped the root off, and Qat fell down and was killed, and the woman flew back to heaven. That is the end of it.

 

10. The Story of Taso. Aurora.

This is a story about Taso a man-eater. This Taso was a man who ate men, and there was a woman, the sister of Qatu, who was pregnant and near her time. Taso found her in the garden ground, in a thicket, and killed her; but he did not eat her, because she was pregnant and her time was nearly come. She lay and rotted in the thicket, never having been brought in for burial. And while this corpse of a woman