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The Fly at the Council

Another time, Tu-chai-pai thought to himself, "If all my sons do not have enough food and drink, what will become of them?" He thought about this for a long, long time and said, "Then they will surely die." He then thought, "What do my men want to do? I will give them three choices: to die now forever, or to live for a long time and then return to the heavens or to live forever."

When the Maker had finished his thinking, he called all men together, but none of the women. He said to the men, "I have been thinking, since there is not much food and water now, I want to know what you wish to do? Here are your three choices: to die forever, to live for a long time on Earth, or to live forever."

Some Indians replied, "We want to die forever"; some said, "We want to live for a time and then die"; others said, "We want to live forever." So they talked and talked in a Council meeting, for they did not know how to decide for everyone.

Then the fly arrived and said, "Oh, you men, what are you talking so much about? Tell the Maker you want to die forever." So the people talked and talked a long time and decided upon their choice: to die and be done with life forever.

This is the reason the fly rubs his hands together constantly, because he is begging forgiveness of the Indians for these fateful words of his.

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The Indigenous Peoples' Literature pages were researched and organized by Glenn Welker.