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Native American Legends

Chuhwuht: The song of the World

A Pima Legend

In the beginning there was only darkness and water. The darkness congealed in certain places and it is from this that the Creator was made. He wandered aimlessly above the water and began to think. He became fully conscious of who he was and what he was to do. He then reached into his heart and pulled out a magic creation stick.

He used this as a walking stick and when some resin formed on the tip, he made it into ants. He took more of this resin and rolled it with his feet into a perfect ball while chanting

Chuhwuht tuh maka-i
Chuhwuht tuh nato
Chuhwuht tuh maka-i
Chuhwuht tuh nato
Himalo, Himalo
Himalo, Himicho!

I make the world, and see,
the world is finished.
I make the world, and see,
the world is finished.
Let it go, let it go
Let it go, start it forth!

As he chanted, the ball grew larger and larger until it became the present size of the earth; thus was the earth created. Then the Creator took a great rock, broke it, and threw it into the heavens, where the pieces became the stars. Then he made the moon in a similar fashion, but neither the moon nor the stars furnished enough light.

So the Creator then took two bowls of water from out of his flesh and he thought thoughts of light. The sun appeared in the sky as he pulled the bowls apart. But the sun did not yet move. So the Creator bounced it like a ball to the east and it bounced back to the west, even as it does today.

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