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45 18 The Terrible Child and the Birds T here was a woman who was sterile. One day she went to a healer to get a cure for sterility. The healer told her to go home, while giving her the following piece of advice: ‘‘Go prepare some porridge1 . But when you are preparing it, if some falls onto your thigh do not wipe it off!’’ Indeed, as she prepared some porridge a little bit of it fell onto her thigh. She didn’t wipe it off. It became a pimple. The pimple swelled up and burst. A child came out of it. When the child came out, he asked his mother: ‘‘Mother, do you know my name?’’ She said no. He asked his father, who also said no. So then the child told them that his name was Kegenkargen-bîga-na-zengloanda2 . He asked his father to fetch him an iron club. His father gave him one. The child took his club and went out into the bush. He met another child as brave as he was. They became friends. They decided to build a cage where they would put all of the birds they killed. 1. Common dish made from millet or corn flour, sagbo in Moore. 2. In the hero’s name, we recognize the word biiga which means ‘‘child.’’ 46 Alain-Joseph Sissao (Translated from the French by Nina Tanti) After killing several of them, they noticed that the number of birds in the cage was getting smaller. So they put Warpîgsenkonba3 in charge of standing watch. Soon afterwards, the latter saw a big hawk hovering in the sky. It came down and asked him: ‘‘Do you want me to eat the meat or a person?’’ Warpîgsenkonba told him to eat the meat, because there was a person and there was some meat. The hawk swallowed the birds and left. The children insulted Warpîgsenkonba and called him good-for-nothing. Someone else was chosen to guard the birds. Soon afterwards the hawk returned and asked him: ‘‘Do you want me to eat the meat or a person?’’ This one also told him to eat the meat, because there was a person and there was some meat. The hawk swallowed the birds and left. Kegenkargen-bîga-na-zengloanda was therefore forced to stay behind and guard the birds himself. The hawk came and said to him: ‘‘Do you want me to eat the meat or a person?’’ The child told him to eat a person because there was a person and there was some meat. The hawk swallowed him, but he came back out through his anus and struck him with his club. The hawk swallowed him again. Once more he came back out through his anus and struck him with his club. This is how he finally succeeded in killing the hawk. When he began to pluck the hawk’s feathers, the feathers turned into birds which flew away. It is the birds which came from these feathers that now fill the world. 3. Animal of the bush. ...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9789956578009
Related ISBN
9789956616558
MARC Record
OCLC
680618032
Pages
136
Launched on MUSE
2013-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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