|The Red Indian Fairy Book|
|by Frances Jenkins Olcott|
|A choice collection of Native American myths and legends carefully selected from many sources. Most are nature stories telling about birds, beasts, flowers, and rocks of our American meadows, prairies, and forests. The tales are arranged according to the seasons with several stories offered for each month of the year. There are some for early spring, when the maple sap mounts, and the arbutus blooms under the snow; for later spring, when the birds nest, and the wild flowers blow; for summer, with its heat, storms, fishing, and canoeing; for autumn with its corn, nuts, and harvest feast; for winter, with its ice, snow, and adventures. A comprehensive subject index for use by teachers and storytellers is included. Ages 8-12 |
THE MEADOW DANDELION
 WHEN the Earth was very young, says the Chippewa
Grandmother, Mudjekeewis the Mighty kept the West
Wind for himself and gave the three other winds to his sons.
To Wabun he gave the East Wind; to the rollicking
Kabibonokka he gave the Northwest Wind. But he made the
lazy Shawondasee ruler of the South Wind and of the
Southland. And very sad was Shawondasee to leave the
cool and pleasant Northland, and, sorrowing, he set out on
"Farewell, Brother," roared the Northwest Wind
Kabibonokka. "Many's the time in your hot land you will
long for my cooling breath."
But the lazy Shawondasee gave no answer, and slowly
making his way to the Southland, built his lodge of
branches. There in the flowery tangle of the forest, he sat
sleepy and lazy in his lodge. He did not see the bright birds
and flowers. He did not feel the fragrant airs, but ever he
 toward the North, and longed and sighed for its
people and cool hills.
And when he sighed in the Springtime, flocks of eager birds
flew northward to feast in the grainfields. In the Summer
when he sighed the hot winds rushed to the North to ripen
the waiting ears of corn and to fill meadows and woods
with flowers. And in the Autumn when he sighed a golden
glow drifted northward, and the purple haze of Indian
Summer draped the hills.
But Shawondasee, too lazy to follow in the paths of birds
and winds, lay in his lodge and sighed with longing.
One Spring, while looking northward, he beheld a slender
maiden, standing in a grassy meadow. Her garments were
green and waving, and her hair was as yellow as gold.
And each night Shawondasee whispered, "To-morrow I will
seek her." And each morning he said, "To-morrow I will
win her for my bride." But always on the morrow he looked
and sighed and said, "To-morrow I will go." But, sleepy and
lazy, he never left his lodge to travel northward.
One morning as he gazed he saw that the maiden's
 hair was
no longer yellow, but her head was white like snow. Full of
grief, he gave out many short and rapid sighs. Then the air
was filled with something soft and silvery like thistledown,
and the slender maiden vanished forever.
And Kabibonokka, the Brother Northwest Wind, came
rollicking southward. Jolly and brisk was he, and laughing
"Ho, lazy one!" cried he, as he blew around the lodge of
Shawondasee. "It was no maiden that you gazed upon, but
a Meadow Dandelion!"
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