by John Fireman
translated by George Ricehill
|BAE 37: 66|
Fireman's brother went hunting and shot a deer, but it lived, so he took a club and killed it. He left it behind because it was heavy. Upon returning for it, he found that it was not there.1
Hočąk-English Interlinear Text
p. 74 —
|A club||he took, and||killed with it.||Heavy||reason|
|he left it.||Coming after||deer||not||there.|
Commentary. To the Western mind the story seems incomplete: were there deer tracks leading from the site? Were there human tracks? Given that it was killed, the fact that the deer simply vanished suggests that it was some kind of spirit animal. However, the story does not speculate, but simply leaves us with the same mystery that confronted Fireman's brother.
Links: Deer Spirits.
Stories: featuring deer as characters: Deer Clan Origin Myth, Little Fox and the Ghost, Porcupine and His Brothers, Wolves and Humans, The Green Man, The Resurrection of the Chief's Daughter, Trickster's Tail, cf. The Race for the Chief's Daughter.
Themes: strange things happen to an animal that has been struck by a hunter: The Choke Cherry Wild Cat; a deer is killed with a club: White Wolf.
1 John Fireman, Tales of Fireman's Brother, trs. by George Ricehill, in Paul Radin, Winnebago Notebooks, Freeman #3892 (Philadelphia: American Philosophical Society) III, #11a, Story 2, p. 74.