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254 | 37. Porcupine and Coyote (first version)1 porcupine had no arrow. he thought he would go hunting. He thought he would get materials to make arrows. So he got them, made stone arrowheads and fastened these on the arrows. When he had finished he carried them to hunt, stuck everywhere into his body. He traveled on until he saw a deer browsing. He sat hidden under a bush for a little while, watching the deer lying in the shade. Porcupine crawled little by little toward the deer. Soon he was quite near. Porcupine was then so small that the deer could not see him. So he crawled through the deer’s anus right into his belly. There he became a porcupine, so that the quills stuck into the deer everywhere. The deer jumped up and ran, but he only went a little way before he fell dead. Porcupine came out of the deer’s mouth. He had no knife with him. He talked to himself as he looked around on the ground for a sharp piece of stone: “I ought to find a good piece of stone in order to skin the deer.” He repeated this many times. Coyote was hiding under a tree; he heard what Porcupine said. Coyote came out and asked, “What are you talking about over here?” “No, I did not say anything.” Coyote said, “Yes, you did. I heard you say, ‘I wonder where I could get a good piece of stone to skin the deer.’” Porcupine said, “Yes, I killed a big buck. I have no knife. Yes, you heard me,” and he showed the deer to Coyote. When Coyote saw it, he said, “You and I will have a contest. Whoever jumps over the deer will be the victor and can skin the deer.” Coyote said, “Porcupine, you run first so I can see if you jump over. If you leap over you can skin it; if you do not, but I do, I win.” Porcupine started to run and tried to jump. He leaped only halfway and fell back. Then Coyote jumped over and said, “I beat you. I am going to skin it.” Porcupine let Coyote have his porcupine and coyote (first version) | 255 way and skin the deer. Coyote carried the skin away and laid it on a big branch of a tree. Coyote tied the two kidneys together and hung them from the tree so that they swung low. Porcupine sat down at a little distance while Coyote went home to tell his wife and sons. “I was out hunting and killed a big buck. I left the meat over there. I want two of our boys to start running right here at the house and race over to the deer. Whoever gets there first can have the two kidneys.” The boys felt glad, so they started to run toward the deer. One of them got ahead and reached there first, but he did not find anything; all the meat was gone from the tree. The boys saw tracks on the ground where somebody had come and taken the meat. The tracks led to a high pine tree, to which Porcupine had carried the meat and put it on top. The two boys went home and told their father, “Porcupine has carried it all away. It is on top of a tall pine tree.” The father and mother went with all their children to the tree where Porcupine was. They all stood close to the pine tree and looked up at him. Coyote called to Porcupine, “We want some of your meat. Give us some.” Coyote repeated this several times. Then Porcupine said, “All right, I will give you the shoulder.” He took it in his hand and stood there. Looking down at the coyotes, he said, “All stand together in one place. Do not scatter. If you scatter and I throw this from such a height, I might hurt you.” So he lied to them. Coyote said, “All right, all stand together in one place.” Porcupine pretended to throw the meat out where all the coyotes could get it, but instead he threw it right at them and killed them all. Onlyalittlebabywasleftliveunderthepileofdead.Porcupineheard the baby crying and, looking down, saw it. The baby said, “Porcupine, I want you to come down and get me, and carry me up to your house.” The baby said this several times before Porcupine descended and carried it up. He boiled meat...


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