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Earth and Sky Stories 1

Why Sun and Moon Live in the Sky (Efik-Ibibio, Nigeria)

Keywords: sun, moon, water, day, night

Summary: Long ago, Sun and Moon were married and lived in a house on earth. But one day Sun invited his friend Ocean to visit and while he added extra rooms to his house, Ocean took up so much space that the water rose to the rooftops. Finally Sun and Moon had to leap into the sky to avoid the flood. Moon got so angry at what Sun did to flood their house that she vowed not to share a house with him again.

"A Home for Sun and Moon," on page 29 in Susan Kantor, One Hundred and One African American Read-Aloud Stories New York: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, 1998). 416pp. $12.95. ISBN 1-57912-039-3.

"Why the Sun and the Moon Live in the Sky," on page 41 in Paul Radin, ed., African Folktales (New York: Schocken Books, 1983). 322pp. ISBN 0-8052-0732-5pa.

Find another version in Kevin Strauss, Tales with Tails: storytelling the wonders of the natural world. (Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2006). 230pp. $35.00pa. ISBN 1-59158-269-5pa.

 

Why the Sea is Salty (Korea)

Keywords: hand mill, thief, salt, boat

Summary: Long ago a king owned a magic hand mill (like a hand coffee grinder) that would grind out anything if you used the right magic words. One day a thief visited the king, dressed as a foreign nobleman. He asked the king about the mill and the king showed him how it worked. The thief remembered the words to start and stop the mill. Later, he stole into the castle palace and stole the mill. Then he climbed into a boat and sailed for his home village to hide from the king's guards. But as he was sailing he decided to start the mill. He couldn't mill gold, because that would be suspicious, so he decided to be a salt merchant. He started the mill grinding and it grinded all thought the night as he slept. But it ground so much salt that the boat sank, drowning the thief. And to this day the magic mill is still grinding out salt and that is why wht sea is salty.

Hamilton, Martha and Mitch Weiss. How and Why Stories: world tales kids can read & tell. (Little Rock, AK: August House, 1999). 96pp. ISBN 0-87483-561-5pa.

Leach, Maria. How the People Sang the Mountains Up: How and Why Stories (New York, NY: Viking Press, 1967). 160pp.

 

The First Fire (Zaire)

Keywords: fire, stars, interdependence, cooperation, adaptation, spider, woodpecker

Summary: Long ago, people had no fire. The animals agreed to help people get fire from the sky. Woodpecker pecked a hole in the sky and spider spun a web to that hole and a brave woman climbed up to get fire out of the sky. That is how people first got fire.

"Starfire," on page 69 in Pleasant DeSpain, Eleven Nature Tales: A Multicultural Journey (Little Rock, AR: August House, 1996). 91pp. $10.75; $4.50pa. ISBN 0-87483-447-3; 0-87483-458-9pa.

"The Gift from a Star," on page 36 in Paola Caboara Luzzatto, Long Ago When the Earth Was Flat: Three Tales from Africa (New York: Collins, 1979). 44 p.

Find another version in Kevin Strauss, Tales with Tails: storytelling the wonders of the natural world. (Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2006). 230pp. $35.00pa. ISBN 1-59158-269-5pa.

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(c) 2006 Tales with Tails Storytelling Programs

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