THE LEGEND OF PALOTQUOPI
MANY years ago when the Hopis were living down at Palotquopi they were very progressive and prosperous, on account of having water, and having an irrigating system from the river which flows through that country. There they had taxation by means of doing some donation work on the canals and ditches at certain times of the year. They did not have so many ceremonies then and their most sacred one was Laconti (Basket Dance). In this dance baskets were used, like the ones of Second Mesa today. This ceremony always took place late in the fall and it had always brought them rain and heavy snow up in the mountains. And also their Jejellti (social dances) were not many, the most joyous one was the Butterfly Dance. Being prosperous in their way of living everything was plenty, and why shouldn’t they be happy and amuse themselves in some way? So, from one of the kivas, they held a Butterfly Dance with which the spectators were very much pleased. Everybody was talking about it, so the dancers again put it on for two more days, then they thought they would pass it on to the next kiva. So they asked the men of the other kiva to carry on the same dance, and when they had danced, these men passed it on to the next kiva, and so it went around like that until it came back to the kiva from where it was started. In this kind of a dance only the young maidens are supposed to dance, but by this time some of the young married women were taking part and instead of putting it on during the day time in the plaza, they were dancing in the kiva at nights, so they were having a great time of their lives, and it went on from bad to worse. Nobody cared who was whose wife or husband, and finally they got the wife of their chief. 56 In those days the chief or any high priest was not supposed to take part in social dances or was not to be seen in the kiva with the rest of the people. As it was their general rule that they must have patience, and above all must bear in mind peace, and think and pray for prosperity in the years to come, for they knew that the people of any race must have good supplies of food and water to keep their bodies in strong physical condition to defend themselves against an enemy attack. They were good fathers and watched over their people carefully. They were patient and neither heard nor spoke evil. No matter what the people would do or how bad they might be, they were always comforted. But as this dancing went on, it was carried too far and all the rest of the priests had gone crazy except Chief Tawayistiwa, himself. This chief they had, was quite a young man; he had only two small children, and these babies being neglected they would cry at night when they woke up, so the father would take them to the kiva to get the mother to nurse the younger one. When they were quieted down the father would take them back to bed again. On these trips to the kiva at night his wife would sometimes ask him to come down into the kiva and look on while they danced, and of course knowing the law and his duty he always had refused. All these things got so heavy on him that he could bear it no longer, so one evening he went and called on his nephew, Siwiyistiwa, who had grown up to be a good strong young man. While this madness was with the people, men and women of mature age had pleaded with their sons and daughters, telling them of the wrong and crime that they were doing against their father, the chief, and themselves. But it was of no use, it only caused the younger people to lose respect for them, and then the old people were ill-treated, spit upon and fed on the leftovers, which were not very much, for the house duties were neglected by the young women. All this was unbearable for the aged people and for the Chief. So he called at the house of his nephew. He was welcome and seated himself by the fireplace. Siwiyistiwa got up from his seat and handed his uncle a bag of tobacco which hung on the wall near by, and this the uncle smoked. After finishing his smoking, the youth asked him what he had come for.
“Yes,” said Tawayistiwa, “after long wanderings in my mind about our children (people) it seems like I am forced to come and have to depend on you to ‘sacrifice’ yourself, not for the good of any one, but for all–everybody here in my town.”
“Yes, you certainly have a lot of patience,” said the youth, “to hold out this way, what with all I have seen and know of your wife. I did not want to tell you because I did not wish to be the cause of the weight of your wrath. Because of the sympathy that I have for you I am willing to do what you have come to ask of me.”
“I thank you, my nephew,” said the Chief. “Thank you. First of all I would like to know if you are strong on your running.”
“Yes,” said Siwiyistiwa, “I am quite strong.”
“All right,” said the Chief. “Of course you may be, but I still want you to gain some more strength and speed. So from tomorrow on, you will start to do your running to the foot of the mountain ridge and back. That is quite a distance away, so the best way to time yourself would be by the rising of the sun. For a few mornings the sun will rise before you get back here, but if you are gaining by and by you will get back here away before sunrise, so be sure to get up at the same time in the mornings and be off. I will call again in a few days and will tell you what we will do next.”
After the Chief had gone Siwiyistiwa was rather a little worried, but of course, with the Hopi in those days the uncle was over the nephews and nieces. Whenever he asked anything of them it had to be done. While the boy was preparing himself, he didn’t know for what, his uncle too was getting things ready for him. The youth was gaining strength and speed and was very light on his feet and he was getting back to the village away before the sun would come up over the horizon. Then Tawayistiwa again went to see his nephew and when he got there he found the youth was waiting for him.
“Come right in and have a seat,” said his nephew, getting up and handing him a bag of tobacco as usual. After smoking a pipe he said to the boy, “Again I am here, hoping to find you with more strength and speed.”
“Yes,” said his nephew, “I have gained some.”
“Very well,” said his uncle, “I have everything ready for you, so tonight you can come over to my house and there I will tell what to do. But be sure to come after everybody goes to the kiva.”
Late that night Siwiyistiwa went to his uncle’s house. Upon entering, the Chief took him away into the back room. There they sat down and there his uncle smoked his pipe solemnly over the pahos which he had prepared. 57 Then he said, “Here I have these things ready for you and tomorrow morning early you will take these pahos out with you toward the same direction you have been going and up over the mountain ridge. On the other side is an open range. There you will come upon a herd of deer. Look them over carefully, then make your selection of a young buck with a pair of good weapons (horns), but wait for the sun to appear. Now watch very closely and just as it peeps over the horizon run into the herd. It is those weapons that you are going to get for me, so be sure to keep after your selected buck until you run him down, then after cutting off his two front horns you will deliver to him these pahos that I have here made ready for him, and also my message.”
The next morning Siwiyistiwa went out to where he was directed and when he got there he went over the mountains and there in the open he saw a herd of deer. He looked them over very carefully while he was waiting for the sun to rise and just as the sun peeped over the horizon he ran into them and how they made the dust fly! But he kept after them along the side of the mountain range so as to keep them away from the rocky hills. The deer kept falling away one by one, until at last his selected buck was left alone. Now finally this deer gave out and lay down. The boy jumped on him quickly and took hold of his horns and turned his head over. But alas, the deer cried, “Mercy me, have a heart,” in plain Hopi, which was of course a very astonishing thing to the youth and he held his breath for a moment. Then he said to the deer, “I am not going to hurt you, I am not going to kill you, I only want your horns, your weapons. My uncle, Tawayistiwa, would like to have them, so he has sent me out here to get them but I don’t know why.”
“Mercy be upon us!” said the deer. “Has he lost his mind and forgot his ‘theory’ and law, 58 and is he angry with us all, and will he use my weapons to destroy his town?” Then he sank down in sorrow and in sympathy for all that were ignorant of the coming calamity. Shedding quite a few drops of tears, he then looked up and said, “Take my weapons, but please do not use your knife, because you will hurt me. Just give them a little twist and they will slip off and another pair will grow out again soon.”
“Thank you,” said the youth as he took off the horns. Then he brought forth his bundle and said to the deer, “Here, I have some pahos which my uncle, Chief Tawayistiwa, has made and sent them to you, hoping to make you all happy. He also said that all you people (game ) 59 living down here in the lower country must get to moving and drift over to the higher mountains to the northeast, that you may be saved, so take these pahos to your people and tell them what the Chief has said about moving.”
The deer got up and went away with the bundle of pahos which he distributed among his people and told them about the Chief’s message, which of course, was a great grief to them all.
The youth went on home taking the two horns which he had taken from the young buck. When he got home Tawayistiwa was waiting for him and as he entered the doorway, “Thanks,” said the Chief. “Thanks that you have come already. I did not quite expect you so soon, but you have proved yourself strong and swift. All right, have a seat.” As the youth seated himself the Chief got out his bag of tobacco and pipe and then he said to his nephew, “If you have anything that you have brought me you may lay it here before me that I may give it a welcome smoke.” So the boy laid the two horns down on a plaque on the floor before the Chief. He was very much gratified with the little horns as though they were for some benefaction of his people. After smoking his pipe, the Chief asked Siwiyistiwa about his trip and the boy told him all about it.
After hearing his nephew’s story of his trip, Tawayistiwa said, “You have done well, but there is some more to be done and I have everything ready, so tonight when you come again I will tell you what you will do next.”
Late that evening the boy went back to his uncle, and when he got there his uncle was waiting for him. As he entered the house he was welcomed. The Chief was already smoking and the boy seated himself by his uncle. “The weight of all this worry is getting heavier every day as I am preparing these things and I am sad to think that here I am working only for the punishment of my children (people) but this will be the only way out of the trouble and it is necessary to sacrifice you.” As he said this he could not help but cry. Tawayistiwa had made masks for him, each one different–Kachina, Yaponcha, Masauwu, and one portion was of fat meat. “Tonight you will wear these masks, one upon another, and carry these weapons of the deer, and you will go the same direction where you have been going for your running, up the mountain range where there is some wood. Build your fire there and when you get enough live coals, take one and put it in the mouth of the top mask and blow on it and this will give the look of having eyes of fire and your fire will be seen from the pueblo. Then come running and when you get here, come through the small south alley and run up the ladder to the top floor of this house. Up there you will find corn in metates. Start grinding for a few moments and then go down again and out the same way. If the men in the kiva be brave and big-hearted they will come out and try to catch you.
With these instructions Siwiyistiwa was dressed up in a dreadful and fearful costume and he went out to where he was directed. He built a fire and the people seeing it from the village wondered who or what it was having a big bonfire, and by the reflected firelight the people could see, even at that distance, something standing in the glow.
The fire went down lower and lower and finally it died out. Then they saw a light coming toward the town, coming closer and closer. When it came up they saw that this terrible being had eyes of fire and those who saw him fell with fright in their doorways or wherever they happened to be. He entered through the alley into the plaza and went to the Chief’s house, where he ascended to the top floor and could be heard grinding corn. Then down he came and went out again toward the direction he had come from. Now it happened that there was a little boy who was just thought to be an outcast and he was with some other boys who were looking down at the dance from the kiva top. This boy was not at all frightened and saw everything. He called down into the kiva to the dancers and told them that some dreadful ghost had come, but everybody called him a liar and would not believe him. 60
This boy, whose name was Kochoilaftiyo (Poker Boy) was just a poor boy and was living with his old grandmother. 61 Regardless of what Kochoilaftiyo had told the people in the kiva about the ghost, the dancing went on with full force until morning. But that day, everybody was telling about this terrible ghost and so the young men declared that they could catch the ghost that night.
After dark the young men placed themselves in many hiding places from where they might leap out at the ghost. But when he came, they all fell down with fright and after coming to they ran for their lives. Kochoilaftiyo was watching the dance from the kiva top, wrapped up in his little mouse skin robe and he was not a bit scared. The young men tried for two nights, but alas, the creature was so frightful that he could not be caught.
The next day the little boy told his grandmother about the ghost. “Grandma,” Kochoilaftiyo said, “for three nights some frightful ghost has been coming to the village and the young men have tried to catch him but all have failed.”
“It is time,” said the old lady, “that we get our warning because of what has been going on. This is a warning of punishment or some calamity which will fall upon us all and it will be something that no one can escape.”
“Tonight,” said the boy, “they will lay for him again and I would like to be with them. If he is caught I would like to see what he is. It must be something more than man who can handle this thing with magic or witchcraft power.”
“So go,” said the grandmother, “and get me a sumac branch.”
Kochoilaftiyo obeyed his grandma and went out after a little branch. When he came back with it the old woman brought out from the back room her materials of feathers and cotton yarns of which she made two prayer plumes and put them on this sumac twig and with her little pipe she smoked her earnest prayer over her offering to the gods. 62 “Take this, my son,” she said to the boy, “to the Masauwu shrine and set it therein and pray for the best, but before you leave look around carefully and if you find there Masauwu’s digging stick, pick it up and replace it with this one. This is the exact duplicate of it.” As she said this she handed him an old digging stick pretty well weathered. 63 Kochoilaftiyo took the stick and the prayer offering to the shrine. There he placed the pahos, looked around carefully, and seeing the stick he picked it up and replaced it with his grandmother’s. Then he came back. The grandmother was very thankful for the stick. “This stick of Masauwu’s is a wand of power and with it you might be able to knock down that ghost. So, my dear child,” said the old woman, “it may be best that you station yourself in the narrow alley through which he comes and goes.”
That evening after dark Kochoilaftiyo, instead of going to the kiva top to look on the dance, went into the alley to wait for the ghost. As he was sitting there in the dark someone came and the boy looked and alas, there was Masauwu 64 himself, standing before him and Kochoilaftiyo was stunned with fright for a moment and could not speak. “You certainly did a wise thing,” said Masauwu to the boy, “by taking my stick, but here is something that will hide you and keep you from being seen,” and he handed him four grass brush bristles and advised him what to do. Kochoilaftiyo was very thankful and he sat down with the bristles in one hand, the stick in the other, and waited for his chance on the ghost. Now; some of the strong young men had also stationed themselves outside the village to await the coming of the ghost. At the same time, the dancing was still going on in the kiva. Toward midnight the ghost was seen coming and all the supposed brave-hearted fell down with fright, but Kochoilaftiyo was still himself. When the ghost passed him he got up and waited for his return and got ready for the attack. The ghost jumped off the house, ran into the alley, and with all his might Kochoilaftiyo struck him with Masauwu’s stick and knocked him down. As he fell, the boy was on top of him and he held his breath for he was half scared then. Finally he asked, “Who are you?”
“It is I,” said the ghost, “but don’t ask me more, but take me into the kiva. In there you will see who I am.”
As they walked over to the kiva the dancing was on with full force, and when they got on top Kochoilaftiyo called in and he was not heard on account of the beating of the drum and again he called at the very top of his voice. This time he was heard, so he said, “Be courteous to this guest who is my companion for I am not alone.” Hearing Kochoilaftiyo’s voice, the whole kiva became silent and all held their breath. Finally a voice called out, “Come in. Come right in.”
The ghost started down the ladder first with Kochoilaftiyo following him, and the people in the kiva were all looking up to see what was coming in. When the ghost exposed himself to the firelight the people were stricken with fright and fell to the floor. One by one, when they came to, they crawled out of the kiva. Only a few old men were left and the ghost and Kochoilaftiyo seated themselves in front of the firelight. Seeing this frightful creature the old men hung their heads and were silent.
Finally, one of them spoke and said, “For all our conduct of crime it is already too late and we must suffer and who knows what will become of us. Perhaps we may learn from this man, whoever he is, but we can do nothing. Call our father, the Chief,” and at this request Kochoilaftiyo went out and called the Chief. He pretended to be very much surprised at being called away in the night, but he took his bag of tobacco and his pipe and went to the kiva with the boy. Coming, he seated himself on the left side of Kochoilaftiyo and before anyone else, he lit his pipe of tobacco and started smoking. Having taken four puffs of smoke out of his pipe he passed it on to the rest of the old men. The pipe went around and was finished up, and then the chief spoke and said, “My dear fellowmen, I wondered why I was called at this time of the night, but I see that you have someone with you.”
“Yes,” said one of the old men, “this ghost has been coming for the last three nights and this being his fourth night he is caught. He has been going up to your house to the top floor. Therefore, perhaps you might explain to us the meaning of all this. Though we know that we have done wrong against you, we are wondering now if this might not mean more than just to stop this dancing, and worry is upon us now.”
“Of all this I do not know,” said the chief, “and also the meaning of it I cannot explain. So without any further questions take the masks off the man that we may see who he is.” Kochoilaftiyo was asked to take the masks off and as he came to the piece of fat meat the Chief said to put it aside as it is food that the men in the kiva may cook and eat. As the last mask was taken off they saw that he was the Chief’s nephew, Siwiyistiwa, his only nephew, and alas he hung his head and wept.
“Being your own nephew,” said the kiva chief (Kiva mongwi), “take him and do what you want with him.”
“No,” said the Chief, “him I deliver unto you.”
Said the kiva chief, “You being our chief, we cannot do otherwise from your wishes, so we demand your advice.”
“If you do,” said the Chief, “I advise you to bury him alive in the plaza in front of the shrine, with all his masks, before the day comes. But be sure and make a good job of it that he may not escape.”
At this command Kochoilaftiyo went out and dug a hole deep enough that Siwiyistiwa’s head would be covered under ground when he was sitting down. When he had done this he went back to the kiva and brought Siwiyistiwa out to the plaza and buried him, but before he had him all covered up Siwiyistiwa asked him to come there for four mornings and to take a look for signs of the approaching disaster.
That night the whole town was weary and the old men and women of good mind were stricken with fear. The next morning Kochoilaftiyo went to look at the grave, and behold, there was Siwiyistiwa’s hand sticking up out of the grave with four fingers open, which meant that something would happen in four days. The second morning he went again and saw that there were three fingers up and one finger down or closed. Now every morning one more finger would be closed down, until on the fourth morning all the fingers had been closed and his whole hand had disappeared under the ground. The day was gloomy. Clouds were gathering in the skies overhead and around the grave the earth was all wet and boggy. Toward noon it began to rain, coming down heavier and heavier, and then out of the grave a great water serpent of enormous size appeared and stood swaying back and forth and also, at every corner of the plaza others appeared but they were not quite of the size of the one at the shrine, who had come up out of the grave. 65 Now water came shooting up out of the corners of the plaza where these serpents stood swaying, and soon there was water everywhere. The rain kept up and the waters were raising higher and higher. Now the people began to move to the higher ground, taking what they could in the way of food and bedding, and there was much suffering and fear, and all this continued for four days. The only thing they could do was to look at their village standing in the midst of the water, where the great serpent was still swaying back and forth. Of course, the people were in great trouble and hated to leave their homes but still this serpent was so fearful and they wondered if it ever would go away. With weary thoughts of sadness the men set to work making their prayer offerings of many pahos, and when this was done the Chief asked of the people who would be willing to sacrifice their children, because they must make all this offering to the Great Serpent and ask him to make peace. Now who would part with beloved children? There was a great hesitation among the people, but being the request of the Chief a boy and a girl of six years of age were chosen who were, of course, of clean hearts and innocent. These two were given a tray of pahos and told to walk out into the water toward the great serpent while the people watched with sadness and tears in their eyes. When they had reached this monster he sprang up and coiled himself around the two children and sank with them into the water, which was of course a very terrible sight to the people watching from the hills.
Now everybody was very much discouraged, and though they hated to leave their homes and property they finally gave up all hope and decided to leave the country, but before starting they called a council to select their new chief or leader, because at this time the Chief considered himself guilty of the disaster and no longer worthy to lead his people and the people too felt the same way, but because of the wrong they had done no one dared to say anything. So finally the Chief himself asked the boy, Kochoilaftiyo, to be the chief and as he had been just an outcast, but had done a brave act, he was now looked upon as more than just a human being, on account of his wise Spider grandmother.
“I pray you,” said Kochoilaftiyo, “I am not worthy to lead you. I am only a Kocholabi (fire poker) and do not consider myself good enough to take your authority, to be your chief and leader.”
“It is not who you are, or what you are that I am considering. It is because of your innocence and the simplicity of your heart that I wish you to be our chief from now on.”
“Well,” said Kochoilaftiyo, “will you and the people ever forsake me?”
“No,” said the Chief, “your wishes and footsteps will be our path and here with my tiponi you shall lead our people.” 66
“I shall not take yours,” said Kochoilaftiyo, “I and my grandmother have our own in which we believe and trust and it is without stains of evil. Therefore, we shall take no other in its place. So you shall keep yours. Your kind request and offer of your highness and royalty unto us, we shall not accept, because we will always be looked upon as who we are and what we are and always will be considered as such and no other but that. Why not ask your brother, Tawahongva? I think it is best that your clan should keep this royalty and continue as our chiefs and leaders. As it is today, on this very day we all feel guilty and not worthy to be your children (people) so it is for you and your clan to consider whether you will have mercy and forgive us. We are willing to follow you again. Therefore, I, Kochoilaftiyo, demand for the people that this man, Tawahongva, your brother, be our chief and leader from this day on, as we feel that it is not right for any other clan to take the royalty away from your clan.”
“Very well,” said Tawayistiwa, “I think you for your great and earnest consideration for my clan, and so your demand for Tawahongva, my brother, to be our chief, is fulfilled.” After these last words, Tawayistiwa picked up his tiponi and handing it to his brother, Tawahongva, declared him chief and leader of the people.
When this was done, the people were somewhat relieved of their weariness. Tawahongva set to work and made his pahos or prayer plumes. With these and his sacred corn meal he drew his line or path over which the people were to journey toward the northeastward.
Now, with all this worry and grief two parents had forgotten their children, a brother and sister. These two little children had been sleeping and wakened up while the water was still high. They cried for their mother and father and not only that they were hungry too. So they got up and searched about for something to eat, and finally they found some piki which they ate. By this time the water had gone down a good deal so the two children came down off their house and went around into the plaza and alas! there they saw the great serpent swaying back and forth and they were very much frightened. They stood still for awhile, looking at the monster in great fear, and then suddenly the serpent spoke to them, saying, “Come, be not afraid, I am not going to hurt you. It is sad to see that you two children have been left behind, so be not afraid and come.” The serpent was being very sympathetic in asking the children to come, so finally they came up to him. “Please, don’t be afraid of me. I am Siwiyistiwa and I am not going to hurt you. I called you here to me to tell you where your parents and the rest of the people have gone. They left here many, many days ago, going toward the northeast, heading for a place called Situqui (Flower Butte) and it is best for you to follow them. You cannot live here because very soon there will not be anything more to eat. If you ever catch up with your people it is likely that you will not recognize your father and mother, so I will tell you their names. Your father’s name is Koyoungnu, and your mother’s is Sackmunima, and they too will not recognize you and they will ask you your names, so young man, you are Tiwahongva and you, his sister, you are Tawiayisnima, so above all remember your parents’ names and your own. Now, you go up over there to the northeast corner house of this plaza and climb the ladders to the very top floor. Up in there you will find some big birds sitting upon the shelves. You must bring them out and let them fly toward the same direction that your people have gone. The feathers of those birds will be used for making pahos of all kinds by your people.”
The two children went up to the house as they were directed, and to their surprise they found some odd looking birds with no feathers on their heads, and the ends of their tail feathers were still covered with the foam from the water which had turned them white, and away over in one corner there sat still another bird looking somewhat the same as the others, but the ends of his tail feathers were not white. After letting these birds down from their roosts they spoke to the children, saying, “We all thank you, Tiwahongva and Tawiayisnima, for we are the innocent elderly people. We could not swim and so here we had turned into birds and we are now the turkeys, and from now on our feathers will be helpful to your people for making prayer offerings to the gods.”
“And I am the buzzard,” said the other strange bird, and with my feathers, after all the sacred ceremonies the members will be ‘discharmed’ and they will also be used for ‘discharming’ the sick and evil among all the people. 67 And again we all thank you for letting us down and out, so here we go, and good-bye.” As they flew away the buzzard went up and circled around overhead four times to “discharm” the ruined town, then he followed the rest of the birds away toward the northeast. After the birds were gone Tiwahongva and his sister went back to Siwiyistiwa, the serpent, for some more instructions.
“Now,” he said to them, “you go up to the west corner and up at the very top floor you will find some sweet corn meal and some piki and also a small robe and gourd to carry your water in. Bundle all that up in the little robe and come back here to me.” So they went up there and got what was there.
When they came back again, the serpent said to them, “Now you are ready to go and if you catch up with your people tell them that I, Siwiyistiwa, am now a supernatural being and have power and will do anything for the people in the way of prosperity–I can send them rain and in fact, anything like that will be yours for the asking, so tell them to make pahos for me and set them out anywhere toward this direction, but remember, they must call me by name at the very top of their voices that I may hear and know. Now, like this, ‘Siwiyistiwa, here I have made pahos for you. We know and remember your message of promise which was sent to us by Tiwahongva and Tawiayisnima, so please fulfill now your promise of sending us rain for the benefit of our crops and the people, and so forth.’ Then the pahos and the message will always be received. Now, I warn you not to look back till you get away over on the other side of the hill. If you do, something might happen to you, so be sure to remember not to look back. Farewell. Take good care of your sister.” Tiwahongva and his sister than started out on their long journey and they didn’t know where they were going but they were traveling on their way. Being so young, it was hard for them to travel, especially for the little sister, so Tiwahongva would carry her on his back awhile and then let her down again and they would go on like that all day. It was still daylight in the evening when they decided to make camp and were just about opening their bundle of lunch when they heard a loud roaring noise overhead and they were very much frightened and wondered what it could be. Tiwahongva held his sister tightly to his breast, and behold, someone had descended from the heavens all clothed in a glittering costume of ice that sparkled like silver and his head and face shone like a star. He spoke to them and said, “Do not fear, I am So-tukeu-nangwi, 68 the heavenly God and because of the sympathy I have for you I have come to help you, so come get on this shield (Yo-vota) of mine and let us be on the way.” When they had climbed onto the shield, up they went into the heavens. The two children had their eyes closed all the way up, until they got there and when they opened their eyes they could see for many miles and everything was grand.
“Now,” said So-tukeu-nangwi, “I know you are tired and hungry, so you may now eat,” and he cut up a nice ripe muskmelon and set it before them and they ate very delightedly.
When the darkness had covered the earth again this God said to them, “Look to the far north and you will see firelight. There is where your people are now. It does not look so very far away, but that is many, many days journey and you are too young and do not know that this is a big undertaking for you. For this reason, I went to get you and brought you up here, because I know you are too young, but you must understand me and I know you will. I am the wisdom and knowledge and above all else you must have faith in me–faith and trust, honesty and truth. Without faith you shall know nothing. If you have faith your prayers for your people will always be answered, and from now on my teachings will come to you in dreams and there will be more and more as you grow older.”
The next morning So-tukeu-nangwi had made everything ready for them to take along upon their journey–seeds of all kinds for the coming season. Said he, “When the spring comes, the warm weather, these seeds you will broadcast outside around the village and they will grow and bear fruit that everybody may eat and they may save the seeds for their own use. Be like the others, play like the other children, but always together. When you catch up and get to your people they will not know you. They have already given you up and have forgotten all about you. Look carefully among them. Your father has a mole under his eye on the right side of his face and your mother has a bunch of gray hair in front on the left side of her head. By these marks you will recognize your own father and mother and you will run to them. These seeds and other things which I have placed in this bundle of your robe must never be handled by anyone, especially this little ‘tiponi’ (emblem) which needs your particular care. It is this ‘tiponi’ that you will always set up when you perform my ceremony for the benefit of your people. Now let us be on the way. I will take you close up to your people, that you may camp just for one night, then in the morning after all the meal is over you will be there. They have got their town built now, so you will go straight into the plaza.”
The two children had a grand ride on Yovota (shield) and were landed just about a quarter of a day’s trip from the town. So-tukeu-nangwi then said, “Farewell” to them and went back up into the heavens.
The next day Tiwahongva and his sister walked into the plaza of the new town. There they stopped and the people stared at them and wondered who they were and where they had come from, so they notified the crier to call out and let the people know, so that they would come to the plaza to see that somebody had come. When the people came, they surrounded them.
Then Chief Tawahongva came forward with a heavy heart of sympathy, “Now, you my people,” he said, “is there anyone here that remembers or could recognize these children and tell us who they are and whom they belong to? Is there any parent here that had forgotten or had given them up as dead at the time of the flood, back down at Palotquopi. They must belong to somebody. Who shall claim them? If nobody will, I will now leave it up to them and see if they, themselves, remember and can recognize their own father and mother. Now look carefully among us and see if you know anyone or remember anybody.” So the brother and sister looked for the mole on the faces of the men and for the gray hair on the women, by which they were to detect their parents, and all at once they recognized them and with tears in their eyes they ran up to their parents, saying, “You are my father and you are my mother. We are your son and daughter. My name is Tiwahongva and mine is Tawiayisnima.”
“My dear children!” cried their parents with tears and they caught hold of them and held them close to their breasts, which of course struck the hearts of all the people and the whole town cried for joy. They were taken to the home of their parents with their little bundle of sacred things and of this they warned them that they must never touch it or open it. To be sure of safe keeping they took it away into the back room and hung it up in the corner.
Thereafter they lived very happily with their parents and the rest of the people. Day after day the wisdom and knowledge was coming to them clearer and clearer so that when the spring came and the days got warmer they did everything that So-tukeu-nangwi had told them to do. They broadcast the seeds and on them it rained and rained. Then the sun came out and shown brightly on them and heated them and caused them to germinate, and in a few days the little plants sprang up. While these Nasiwum 69 (brother and sister) would play around with the rest of the children they were always telling them not to pull up the plants for they would bear fruit for the people. And every few days it would rain, which kept the plants growing quite fast and all about the town it was all green. Soon the people were noticing the blossoms beginning to bloom on these plants of many kinds and having all these fruitful plants around them they were very happy and when these were ripe and mature everything was plentiful and the people gathered them all in. They lived there happily for a number of years but as they were really heading for Situqui they decided to move on, and so again they were on the long journey and ahead of them they would always send their scouts–men who were good runners and whose duty it was to look for new sites. On their travels they were protected because So-tukeu-nangwi was with them. This time their new location was at Nuvaquayotaka (Chavez Pass–a butte with snow belt on). Here again they lived very prosperously. But knowing that this was not to be their destination they moved on up to Homolovi (east bank of the Little Colorado river, near Winslow). There they were divided into many groups and established their villages here and there. 70
Their life here was miserable on account of many mosquitos. These insects caused deaths, especially to the young children, so they moved on still looking for Situqui, going through the country that is called the Moqui Buttes, on to Paquaichomo (Water Dust Hill) which is within a few miles of the present Hopi towns, around the First and Second Mesa district. Southeast of them was Awatovi, which was a good sized town but was now in ruins. From this place, Paquaichomo, they sent the scouts back to find the rest of the people who also had left the Homolovi district. It was thought that they might have gone in other directions and sure enough they were found in many different places in small groups. These scouts were sent back to tell them that the Chief and his group were now in sight of Situqui (Walpi), so Chief Tawahongva was calling all his people together. Finally, most of them came on but some of them had already gone to Sioki (Zuni). Tawahongva then sent his messengers to the chiefs of all the different towns asking for permission to be admitted into their villages and to become a part of their people. So to each town a message went, to Walpi, Mishongnovi, Shung-opovi and Awatovi. When the messengers came back with. the news none of the replies were satisfactory and they all felt sad and realized that they were in a very difficult position, being as they were in somebody else’s territory. The only thing to do now was to divide themselves equally into groups and go to these towns and try to enter, so then each group had to select their leader or spokesman. In each group was an equal number of each clan, as the Corn, Cloud, Tobacco, Eagle, Sun-forehead, Sand and Bamboo clans. With the group which went to Shung-opovi, Nasiwum (brother and sister Tiwahongva and Tawiayisnima) and also Kochoilaftiyo and his grandmother went. Each group was now hoping for the best, so they camped within a short distance of these towns and then asked for mercy and to be permitted to enter in and become their people, but the answers from the chiefs were of no satisfaction. Four being the limit of time to do anything or to ask for anything, these people were very much troubled and discouraged on the third day of their request at all these places. The chief at Shung-opovi did not know that he was discarding the best of these groups who were coming to his people, the two Nasiwum who had the wisdom and knowledge of So-tukeu-nangwi and also Ko-choi-laftiyo and his wise old grandmother. Here at Shung-opovi each clan was admitted in, one after another, the Sun-forehead clan was the last to enter. On this last day Nasiwum were more than discouraged–they had given up all hope, and said that they would stay just where they were and they refused to enter into the town. But Kochoilaftiyo and his grandmother went in with the rest. In a few days Nasiwum had disappeared and no one knew where they had gone. 71 At Mishongnovi and over at Awatovi these people had less trouble of being permitted to enter. But at Walpi they had received the same kind of treatment, or even worse than at Shung-opovi, so it was hopeless to try again and they decided to move on to Siotuka (Onion Point).
By this time, old man Masauwu got anxious and excited, so he rushed up to the town to see the people who had taken his name for their clan. 72 He told them that these people whom the chief of Walpi had refused were religious and were honest in their ceremony and that it would bring rain. Said he, “You must not forget and must remember that I am the one that owns this whole territory. The chief here has no more right than just of his town. I am the man that has all the right to say what I think, so hereafter, whoever comes shall enter and stay. With compassionate feelings in my heart I ask for two of your good runners to rush down there and head them off. They are leaving right now.”
When these two runners reached them at Tawapa (Sun Spring) their scouts had already gone ahead. Tawahongva and his people had destroy all the crops of the Walpi’s because their people had received such disagreeable treatment from the chief. While all this was going on, it was clouding up very heavily overhead and the people had divided themselves–all the women folk on one side and the men on the other. The women had formed in a circle and were singing and dancing the Basket Dance and while this was going on the storm clouds had gathered so heavily that the day was growing very dark and cold and then it started snowing and it kept coming on heavier and heavier. All through the storm and the dancing the two Masauwu clansmen had pleaded earnestly with Tawahongva and his people, telling them that this chief who had refused them was only a sub-chief under Masauwu.
“To make you understand,” said the two men, “we are telling you all, Masauwu has all the right here and it is his earnest message of sympathy that we have brought to ask you to come and live with us. We trust and worship him. What the chief has done unto you by this he has only hurt himself and lost his self respect. So trust that we, with all our hearts, are telling you the truth and asking you all earnestly to come with us.”
“Well,” said Tawahongva, “will it be that you will consider and respect us as you do yourselves as a people? Otherwise we will not turn back to go with you. My scouts have already gone.”
“We honestly and truly say that you will have the same right as we have, so over what land your scouts have trotted, this is given unto you. It is yours forever.”
During all these pleadings the dancing by the women was kept up and the snow by this time had fallen over a foot deep. At last Tawahongva consented for all his people to return to Walpi or Situqui and all at once the snowstorm turned into rain–a real cloudburst which washed away the snow in a very short while and now the waters were rushing down off the hillsides from the Walpi Mesa. All this water had drained down into the flats and that made nice fertile farming land for the people. Now from that day on to this day, the descendants, generation after generation, of these people from Palotquopi have been living here at these different Hopi villages. But Situqui is no more. This Situqui was where the present Walpi is now situated. There used to be a big sand dune covering this whole mesa and the butte that you see there today was covered, heaped up with sand, and every summer it would be covered with flowers of many different varieties. Later all this sand was drifted away off this mesa, by strong winds, and these sand dunes are now away over above Wepo Spring and are still slowly drifting on.