Native American Legends
Flint visits the Rabbit
A Cherokee Legend
In the old days Täwi'skälä (Flint) lived up in the
mountains, and all the animals hated him because he had helped to
kill so many of them. They used to get together to talk over means
to put him out of the way, but everybody was afraid to venture near
his house until the Rabbit, who was the boldest leader among them,
offered to go after Flint and try to kill him. They told him where
to find him, and the Rabbit set out and at last came to Flint's
Flint was standing at his door when the Rabbit came up and said,
sneeringly, "Siyu'! Hello! Are you the fellow they call Flint?"
"Yes; that's what they call me," answered Flint. "Is
this where you live?" "Yes; this is where I live."
All this time the Rabbit was looking about the place trying to study
out some plan to take Flint off his guard.
He had expected Flint to invite him into the house, so he waited
a little while, but when Flint made no move, he said, "Well,
my name is Rabbit; I've heard a good deal about you, so I came to
invite you to come and see me."
Flint wanted to know where the Rabbit's house was, and he told
him it was down in the broom-grass field near the river. So Flint
promised to make him a visit in a few days. "Why not come now
and have supper with me?" said the Rabbit, and after a little
coaxing Flint agreed and the two started down the mountain together.
When they came near the Rabbit's hole the Rabbit said, "There
is my house, but in summer I generally stay outside here where it
is cooler." So he made a fire, and they had their supper on
the grass. When it was over, Flint stretched out to rest and the
Rabbit got some heavy sticks and his knife and cut out a mallet
Flint looked up and asked what that was for. "Oh," said
the Rabbit, "I like to be doing something, and they may come
handy." So Flint lay down again, and pretty soon he was sound
asleep. The Rabbit spoke to him once or twice to make sure, but
there was no answer. Then he came over to Flint and with one good
blow of the mallet he drove the sharp stake into his body and ran
with all his might for his own hole; but before he reached it there
was a loud explosion, and pieces of flint flew all about.
That is why we find flint in so many places now. One piece struck
the Rabbit from behind and cut him just as he dived into his hole.
He sat listening until everything seemed quiet again. Then he put
his head out to look around, but just at that moment another piece
fell and struck him on the lip and split it, as we still see it.
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