One of the things I’ve been doing is collecting stories. They are great for learning language and important to study. Mostly I’ve gotten fables so far. That’s good-I need to know what a fable sounds like, so that the stories we eventually produce don’t sound like that. They need to sound like true stories, because they are! If you want to hear more about the stories I’m working on, click here. You might have to hold down the control key (CTRL) while you click.
So, just for fun, here’s a story someone told me. I think he made the language really simple so I could understand it. Don’t ask me what the death ceremonies are-I still have tons to learn about the culture!
The Bat and the Sun
The story I’m going to tell you is the about when the sun
and the bat were still friends. One day, the sun’s mother died. Since the sun’s mother was dead, he sent his
son to go to his friend the bat’s house to ask him for a piece of cloth to bury
his mother in.
So the son went to the bat’s house and said, “Your friend’s
mother is dead. He sent me to get a
piece of cloth. Then he will go back and
do the ceremonies of death for his mother, and his mother’s death will be good."
The bat took the cloth and gave it to the son of the
sun. The son went back and gave the
piece of cloth to his father. His father
did the ceremonies for his mother’s death, then he took that piece of cloth and
he buried his mother.
Not even two days later the bat’s mother died as well. Since the bat’s mother was dead, the bat sent
his child saying, “Go to my friend’s house and get me the piece of cloth. My mother is dead. I’m going to bury her.”
So the child left. When
he arrived he said, “Your friend said to give him the piece of cloth, he is
going to bury his mother. His mother is
The sun said, “Oh, me and my friend there, we have
quarreled. I took that piece of cloth
and I buried my mother. If you go back, you tell him that I buried that
cloth with my mother.”
And the child went back. The bat asked, “Where is the cloth?
And his son said, “Your friend said that he took that cloth,
and he buried it with his mother.”
Then the bat said, “Yes, that sun and I, we have
quarreled. I’m not going to look at the
sun any more, I’m going to look at the ground.” He turned his face, he lowered it, he looked at the ground.
From that day on the bat has hung upside down, even today he
lowers his head, looking at the ground.
2 thoughts on “Story time”
Very interesting. It sounds like an Aesop fable to me. If I do recall most of those were African in origin as well. I think one thing that was common with most of those fables is that there were things personified in order to explain why things are the way they are. In this story the sun and the bat were personified in order to explain why the bat hangs upside down. In Jesus’ parables he spoke of people in realistic events in a way that explained what he wanted clarified. Are there any stories of famous (real) heroes? They might be a better example of how to craft your stories.
That’s neat. It sounds like a “Just-So Story,” like Kipling told. The starting point is something observable – e.g., bats are nocturnal and hang upside down – and tells a story to explain it. You see some of this in Greek/Roman mythology, like the story about the sunflowers and why they follow the sun.
Great stuff, Nora!