Native American Legends
A Cochiti Legend
A chief had two daughters. The eldest was Turquoise Girl, and the
younger, Corn Tassel Girl. They went to the river to get water.
As they were coming, they heard some one singing. The elder said,
"Listen!" they heard the song,
Turquoise Girl, Corn Tassel Girl,
Come to my meadow of squashes
And gather all the blossoms,
Take them to your father and mother,
And make a great soup for you all.
The elder said, "Do you hear that song?" "Yes, I
hear it. He is calling our names." "Shall we go across
the river?" "Yes, let's find the boy who sings the beautiful
song. He is playing the pipe." "We will go to look for
him." They took off their shoes and left them at the edge of
the river and went across. They pushed through the bushes and looked
and looked, but they could not see anybody. At last they came to
a little shelter-hut, and saw him sitting on top, singing.
He had on fringed leggings and moccasins and a man's black manta-shirt.
His face was painted red, and on his head were downy eagle feathers.
He was playing a pipe. They said, "Hello," and he answered,
"Hello, Turquoise Girl and Corn Tassel Girl." "Are
you the one who is singing the song of your meadow full of squash
blossoms?" "Yes," said Payatamu, "Come to my
squash meadow and gather blossoms to take home to your father and
mother." They went to his fields and they played together,
gathering the squash blossoms.
Afterwards they went to his house. He lived in White House which
was only a little place. His old grandmother was there. They went
up the ladder. Everybody was laughing at them. "These two girls
are foolish to take such a boy," they said. He called to his
grandmother, "I am bringing two girls, Turquoise and Corn Tassel;
I am going to marry today." They went in, Turquoise Girl first,
then Corn Tassel, and the boy last. He went straight into the inner
room. The girls sat down. He came out; he was half bat (on median
line). They were ashamed. The grandmother told Corn Tassel Girl
to grind blue corn and Turquoise Girl to grind sprouted wheat.
When they had finished Turquoise Girl put a big bowl in the fireplace
and filled it with water. Corn Tassel Girl brought the bowl of meal
to stir into the water. They poured in the corn and wheat and mixed
them. It soon boiled, and then cooled. They took it off and emptied
it into smaller bowls for the evening meal.
At supper time the grandmother set the bowls on the floor and they
helped themselves. They had a good time. Bat Boy drank and drank;
he ate too much. When it was time for bed that night, the grandmother
said to the girls, "Don't pinch my grandson." They went
to bed but they would not sleep with Bat Boy. When his grandmother
was sound asleep, and the Bat Boy, too, had shut his eyes, Turquoise
and Corn Tassel got up quickly. They pinched Bat Boy as hard as
they could. He burst. They ran out and went to the river, took their
water jugs and went home. They took their squash blossoms with them.
When they got home they gave them to their father and mother. Their
father said, "Where were you yesterday and today?" "Payatamu
took us to his house. He gave us these squash blossoms." "Thank
you," said the mother. So they gave her the squash blossoms.
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