The Rabbit and the Opossum
By Buffalo Calf
January, 1894
recorded by James Owen Dorsey

 

1)

Rabbit and Opossum were living together, they say.

 

ma-shtiⁿ-ke siⁿ-te shta xo-te e-naⁿ-pa

mat̨ke sįtt ta xtte enąp

rabbit/tail+smooth+gray = opossum/aforementioned, that, he, she, it+two = both, also, too, that one too

 

ti-kde naⁿ i-ya-we

ttkde ną iywe

to live together in same tent, set up housekeeping, dwell together, keep house/habitual, regularly; past sign, when/to say+pluralizer = they say

 

2)

Then, after they had been living together for a while, Opossum went hunting, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ ti-kde

kįttą ttkde

that, there+and, still, yet+and, when, since, as = then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/to live together in same tent, set up housekeeping, dwell together, keep house

 

koⁿ ni-kʰa naⁿ

k̨-nikʰ ną

as, since, so, like+they, 3rd person plural continuative sitting+regularly, usually, often; past sign, when = after they had been so awhile

 

siⁿ-te shta xo-te ta-bde de i-ya-we.

sįtt ta xtte tbde d iywe.

opossum/to hunt/to go/to say+pluralizer = they say

 

3)

Opossum returned, having killed turkeys, they say.

 

si-ka taⁿ-ka te-wa-de kdi naⁿ i-ya-we.

skka tt̨ka tʔwad kd ną iywe.

chicken+big, large = turkey/to kill them/to have come back here/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when/they say

 

4)

Well, then, when Opossum returned, Rabbit cooked the turkeys for him, they sat and ate the food, they say.

 

ha-o ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ kdi naⁿ

hao kįttą kd ną

*/then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/to have come back here/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when

 

* hao . yes, well, ho, thank you, how are you, agreed, sign of approval as the English Hear! Hear!, interjection of approval, marks a change of idea as the beginning of a new paragraph in writing, used in calling to a distant person, oral period, masculine imperative

 

ma-shtiⁿ-ke o-ki-hoⁿ naⁿ

mat̨ke kih̨ ną

rabbit/to cook or boil food for oneself or someone/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when

 

wa-naⁿ-bde koⁿ ni-kʰa naⁿ i-ya-we.

wan̨bde k̨-nikʰ ną iywe.

eat, eat a meal, dine; food/as, since, so, like+they, 3rd person plural continuative sitting+regularly, usually, often; past sign, when = after they had been so awhile/they say

 

5)

Well, Opossum went hunting again, they say.

 

ha-o shi-naⁿ de niⁿ i-ya-we ta-bde.

hao in̨ d nį iywe tbde.

well/again/to go/3rd person singular moving; the singular moving/they say/to hunt

 

6)

Then, Opossum returned having killed more turkeys, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ si-ka taⁿ-ka te-wa-de

kįttą sikk tt̨ka tʔwade

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/turkey/to kill them

 

kdi naⁿ i-ya-we siⁿ-te shta xo-te

kd ną iywe sįtt ta xtte

to have come back here/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when/they say/opossum

 

7)

Opossum said, Thats enough for now, I could hardly kill any, theyre very wild, they say.

 

iⁿ-chʰoⁿ zhaⁿ aⁿ-ni-hi te-a-de

įčʰ̨ ą ̨nih tʔede

now, right now, at this moment+*+almost, barely, hardly, nearly+I kill = I could hardly kill any

 

* ą was not translated by JOD, it could possibly be ǫ . fit proper; as it should be; enough; that will do; still, yet; at any rate; and, so, thus

 

ma-xi-ka-zhi a-ta-pa-we,

mɣiki attppawe,

modest, shy, diffident, bashful+not, negation = wild/too, great, exceeding, often, always+pluralizer = they are very

 

i-yi i-ya-we.

iy iywe.

to have said+they say = they say that he said

 

8)

Rabbit said to Opossum, I will cook this turkey, they say.

 

de si-ka taⁿ-ka o-ki-hoⁿ, i-ke i-ya-we ma-shtiⁿ-ke.

d skka tt̨ka akih̨ tte, ik iywe mat̨ke.

this/turkey/*1/*2/to say to someone/they say/rabbit

 

*1 akih̨ . I cook or boil food for oneself or someone

*2 tte . future, will, shall

* akih̨ tte substituted for okih̨ . JOD writes (?) see note for okih̨, his notes indicate akih̨ or okikih̨ should be used.

 

9)

Then, again, the next morning, Opossum went hunting, they say.

 

e-ti-tʰaⁿ shi-naⁿ a-ka-sa-ni ta-bde de i-ya-we.

etttʰą in̨ kasni tbde d iywe.

from that time, at that time, from then on/again/the next morning/to hunt/to go/they say

 

10)

Well, then, there at the hunting place, Opossum sang to the wild turkeys, they say.

 

ha-o ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ e-ti si-ka taⁿ-ka ma-xi-ka-zhi

hao kįttą tti skka tt̨ka mɣiki

well/then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/there, then/turkey/wild

 

wa-xo-ka niⁿ-kʰe i-ya-we siⁿ-te shta xo-te,

waxkka nįkʰe iywe sįtt ta xtte,

to sing to them/3rd person singular continuative sitting; the singular, sitting/they say/opossum

 

11)

🎶 red eyed turkey taⁿ taⁿ 🎶

 

🎶 si-ka taⁿ-ka i-shta zhi-te taⁿ taⁿ 🎶

🎶 skka tt̨ka it itt ttą ttą 🎶

turkey/eye/red/vocable/vocable

 

12)

🎶 gray headed turkey taⁿ taⁿ 🎶

 

🎶 si-ka taⁿ-ka pa-hi xo-te taⁿ taⁿ 🎶

🎶 skka tt̨ka pphi xott ttą ttą 🎶

turkey/head/gray/vocable/vocable

 

13)

The turkeys came when Opossum sang to them, they say.

 

wa-xo-ka naⁿ tʰi-we i-ya-we

waxokk ną tʰwe iywe

to sing to them/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when/to arrive, to have come here+pluralizer = they came/they say

 

14)

When it came, when the turkey arrived, it would circle around Opossum, it would go all around, circling Opossum at a distance, then it would come and pass right by Opossum, they say.

 

tʰi naⁿ

tʰ ną

to arrive, to have come here/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when

 

xo-ka-ki-xe hi

xokkkkixe h

*/very, intensifier

 

* xokkkkixe . to go around something at a distance, going all around in a circular or pear-shaped manner.  Similar cognate words in Osage and Kaw reference islands or lakes formed by a creek or river forming an ox bow.  Kaw references a sketch, JODs notes include a sketch of the formation of such an island; it resembles a cutaway of a toy balloon, where the interior of the balloon may be imagined to be the island when the neck of the balloon is pinched.

 

tʰi-[i]-he de i-ya-we

tʰ[i]he d iywe

to arrive, to have come here+to pass by a certain way or place, to go or pass by that particular way, rather than another+to go = to pass by close to him/they say

 

15)

Then, in that way, Opossum would catch one, when he would catch a turkey, he took hold of it by the neck and broke it in two, then he would put the turkey into his bag, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ miⁿ di-ze naⁿ

kįttą m̨ diz ną

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/one, a, an/get, take, seize/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when

 

ta-i-ta o-naⁿ a-taⁿ di-ba-xe naⁿ

ttitt oną attą dibγe

neck/take hold of, seize, grasp/when, and/to break in two by pulling/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when

 

o-zhi-ha o-knaⁿ koⁿ niⁿ-kʰe i-ya-we

iha okn̨ k̨-nįkʰ iywe

sack, bag, pocket, pouch/to put or place into/as, since, so, like/3rd person singular continuative sitting; the singular, sitting/they say

 

16)

After some time, Opossum had filled his bag with turkeys, they say.

 

e-shaⁿ hi o-zhi-ha ki-pi ka-xe i-ya-we

ą h iha kppi kγe iywe

at length, after some time/sack, bag, pocket, pouch/full, filled/to make/they say

 

17)

Then, Opossum placed his bag on his back and headed home, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ ki-kiⁿ

kįttą kikʔ̨

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/to carry on ones back, pack ones own property on the back

 

naⁿ kde i-ya-we

ną kd iywe

regularly, usually, often; past sign, when/to go home, to start homeward/they say

 

18)

When Opossum arrived back home, he said, When I sang to them and one would come, I killed them, they say.

 

a-wa-xo-ka taⁿ tʰi taⁿ

awxokk tą tʰ tą

I sing to them/and, when, since, as/to arrive, to have come here/and, when, since, as

 

te-a-wa-de miⁿ-kʰe, i-ye kʰi i-ya-we

tʔawad mįkʰ, iy kʰi iywe

I kill them/1st person singular sitting/to say/to arrive back at ones own/they say

 

19)

The Rabbit was thankful, they say.

ma-shtiⁿ-ke we-shnaⁿ niⁿ i-ya-we

mat̨ke wną nį iywe

rabbit/to be thankful, grateful, appreciative/3rd person singular moving; the singular moving/they say

 

20)

Rabbit said, Thanks! and then he took them, the bag of turkeys, they say.

 

ka-ni-ke, i-y[e] a-taⁿ wa-di-ze niⁿ i-ya-we

kanik, iy[e] ttą wadze nį iywe

thanks!/to say/when, and/to get, take, seize them/3rd person singular moving; the singular moving/they say

 

21)

Then, the Rabbit cooked the turkeys, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ o-ki-hoⁿ

kįttą okhǫ

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/to cook or boil food for oneself or someone

 

tʰaⁿ naⁿ i-ya-we ma-shtiⁿ-ke

tʰą ną iywe mat̨ke

3rd person singular standing; the standing/regularly, usually, often; past sign, when/they say/rabbit

 

22)

The Rabbit cooked all that day, because there were so many turkeys, they say.

 

haⁿ-pa naⁿ o-ki-hoⁿ tʰaⁿ naⁿ i-ya-we,

h̨pa n̨ okhǫ tʰą ną iywe,

day/*/to cook or boil food for oneself or someone/3rd person singular standing; the standing/*/they say

 

* ną, nǫ . habitual, regularly, usually, often; past sign, when; the singular sitting; only, just, alone

 

zho-hi hi e taⁿ-ha

hi hi e t̨ha

much, many/very, intensifier/aforementioned, that, he, she, it/because

 

23)

Well, after some time, Rabbit had devoured his share of the food.

 

ha-o kda-sniⁿ i-ya-we ti-aⁿ taⁿ

hao kdasn̨ iywe ttį tą

well/to swallow or devour ones portion or share/they say/long time/and, when, since, as

 

24)

Well, then, the Rabbit had enough, they say.

 

ha-o ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ ma-shtiⁿ-ke

hao kįttą mat̨ke

well/then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/rabbit

 

i-bnaⁿ niⁿ-kʰe i-ya-we

bną nįkʰ iywe

to have enough of, to have sufficient of, to be satisfied, to have ones fill, to be tired of/3rd person singular continuative sitting; the singular, sitting/they say

 

25)

Then, Rabbit said, Today, I have truly had enough! they say.

 

kįttą, haⁿ-pa de

kįttą, h̨pa d

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/day+this = today

 

aⁿ-naⁿ-bnaⁿ miⁿ-kʰe e-de,

ąn̨bną mįkʰ ed,

Ive had enough, Im satisfied, Ive had my fill, Im tired of/1st person singular sitting/indeed, declarative, oral period

 

i-yi i-ya-we

iy iywe

to have said+they say = they say that he said

 

26)

Then, Rabbit said, Rabbit is what they will call me, that is how I will be known there among the humans, and then he hopped off, his whitish tail disappearing into the thicket, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ, ni-ka-shi-ka o-taⁿ-ti

kįttą, nkkaika ott̨tti

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/person, people, a man+exist, abound+at, by, in = at the place where humans live, among them, among people

 

ma-shtiⁿ-ke i-ke-a-we

mat̨ke ikewe

rabbit/to say+pluralizer = they say, they call

 

e a-ni-he te e-ta,

e anhe tt ett,

aforementioned, that, he, she, it/1st person singular moving/future, shall, will be/aforementioned, that, he, she, it+to, at, toward, in that direction = there

 

i-y[e] a-taⁿ

iy[e] ttą

to say/when, and

 

o-xda-ti siⁿ-te saⁿ-haⁿ i-naⁿ-naⁿ de i-ya-we

oxdtti s̨tte s̨hą in̨ną d iywe

thicket, bushes, brush+at, by, in = into the thicket or brush/tail/whitish, grayish/suddenly and often, unsteady, ungainly/to go/they say

 

27)

Then, Opossum said, Opossum is what they will call me, that is how I will be known there among the humans, and then he went into a hollow log, they say.

 

ko-i-shoⁿ-taⁿ, siⁿ-te shta xo-te i-ke-a-we

kįttą, sįtt ta xtte kewe

then, thus, accordingly, in that way, therefore/opossum/they say

 

e a-ni-he te e-ta, i-y[e] a-taⁿ

anhe tt ett, iy[e]ttą

aforementioned, that, he, she, it/1st person singular moving/future, shall, will be/there/to say/when, and

 

zhaⁿ xdo-xa o-pʰe i-ya-we

ą xdxʔa opʰ iywe

wood, tree+hollow, empty = hollow tree or log/enter, to go in/they say

 

28)

The end.

 

ka e-she-tʰaⁿ-ki

k-etʰąk

about that length would be long enough, no longer, the end, that is the end

 

 

 

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