Page:The Melanesians Studies in their Anthropology and Folklore.djvu/429

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Deitari. Tarkeke.

fire-place, and there it stayed. And after many days when he was going to work he told his wife to cook some food for him, and she went to get it. Bat when she came back into the house she found food already cooked, and she did not know who had prepared the food for her. Thus it happened very often, and the woman told her husband. And he when he heard it bade her sit and watch who it was that did it. So she sat by the side wall of the house, and saw Deitari (Tari's blood) creep out of the bamboo vessel which Tari had put aside; and she saw that he was exceedingly fair, and she hid him. Then when Tari came in from work he asked his wife, Haven't you seen him? And she said, What was that you put by the fire-place? I did not put anything there, said he. But his wife said, Not so, you put something small there in a bamboo. Then he remembered about his blood, and he said to his wife, My blood was in that bamboo; and his wife said, I saw him come out of that bamboo that you had put there. So she brought him forth, and Tari rejoiced very much to see him. And one day as they were living together the boys of the village, and Deitari with them, went to bathe in the stream, and sang songs. And there was a man called Taepupuliti, and they say that he changed himself into a fish, and went and devoured the boy who had come out of the bamboo, and went off with him into a different country. And Tari sent every kind of fish and bird to seek for Deitari; and he found a little fish, extremely thin, and this fish and Deitari's father found him hidden at the back end of Taepupuliti's house. And they two, Tari and Taepupuliti, sat down to drink kava; and the father of the one whom the other had devoured let the liquor fall from his mouth as he drank, so that the kava did not strike (affect) him; but as for the one who had eaten his child it struck him very much, and his father carried him off again.


14. Taekeke. Aurora.

They say that he used to devour men in all the islands, and that he made the image of a fish with woven vines, and got