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mary tyone Ch’o ˛o ˛t’üüdn Ch’aachin’ Shyiit Eedah When Horsefly Was Living in a Stump I am going to tell about the Horsefly.1 The Horsefly sat inside a tree stump that was standing by the beach, in an ‘‘egg stump.’’2 The people were eating, and they went out for eggs but they would disappear. He had an axe handle inside the stump with him, and when the people would climb the tree for the eggs, he would chop them with the axe, and then he would eat them. They kept on doing that; the people went for eggs but they would disappear. And so Raven said, ‘‘Let me go for the eggs.’’ He pretended to go for the eggs. He climbed way up the ‘‘egg stump’’ [the tree with the nest holes]. And there was Horsefly with the stone axe, ‘‘Oh, my father’s nephew!’’3 ‘‘So, that’s the one my father told about long ago’’ [Horsefly said]. ‘‘You must really be the one that is my father’s nephew’’ [Raven said]. ‘‘How come you say that I am your father’s nephew?’’ Horsefly said to him. ‘‘Oooh, he says that he has no one to tell him stories’’ [Raven said]. ‘‘You are my father’s nephew,’’ Raven tells him. He lied to him and [Raven said], ‘‘Come on down here to me. Let’s sit together,’’ and so Horsefly came to him and sat with him. They told each other stories, and Raven made for Horsefly a birch-bark canoe made out of sand. ‘‘Let’s go out on the lake in canoes to see who can paddle the fastest,’’ he [Raven] tells him. So Horsefly paddled way out in the middle in the canoe and  Upper Tanana [Raven says] ‘‘Let the canoe turn back into sand.’’ And his whole canoe dissolved on the surface and went down into the lake. Later [Raven says], ‘‘Oh! Let me take you to shore.’’ Raven paddled up to him. At the prow of the boat he cut his [Horsefly’s] head off. He [Horsefly] sank into the water, and he [Raven] brought his head back to the people. ‘‘This is what you have cried tears for until your eyes are red.’’4 He threw the Horsefly’s head in to them. And so that is why now the Horsefly has no head, but just has eyes inside its body. So after that time they named him Ch’o ˛o ˛t’üüdn, ‘‘the one that cuts.’’5 notes . This is a funny story about the bothersome horsefly Ch’o ˛o ˛t’üüdn, ‘‘the one that cuts.’’ . ‘‘A dry tree with bird nest holes in it.’’ – – M. T. . ‘‘Raven talks in Ahtna here.’’ – – M. T. . ‘‘You know how people cry many times, that Ch’o ˛o ˛t’üüdn makes people cry lots.’’ – – M. T. . ‘‘And that is why when he bites you he cuts you really bad.’’ – – M. T. ...


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