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Should yo u ask me , whence these stories?Whence these legends an d traditions,

With th e odors of the forest,

With th e de w an d damp of m eadows,

With th e curling smoke of wigwams,

With the rushing of great rivers,

With their frequent repetitions,

An d their wild reverberations,

As of thunder in th e mountains?

I should answer, I should tell you,.. From the fo rests and th e prairies,

From th e great lakes of th e Northland,

From the land of th e Ojibways,

From th e lan d of the Dacotahs,

From th e mountains, moors, an d fen-lands,

Where the heron, th e Shuh-shuh-gah,

Feeds among th e reeds and rushes .I repeat them as I heard themFrom th e lips of Nawadaha,

Th e musician, the sweet singer."

Should yo u ask where Nawadaha

Found these songs so wild and wayward,Found these legends and traditions,

I should answer, I should tell you,.. In the bird' s-nests of th e forest,

In th e lodges of th e beaver,

In th e hoof-prints of the bison,

In th e eyry of th e eagle !"All th e wildfowl sang them to him,

In th e moorlands an d the fen-lands,

In th e melancholy marshes;

Chetowaik, th e plover, sang them,

Mahng, th e loon, th e wild goose, W awa,

Th e blueheron,

th e Shuh-shuh-gah,An d the grouse, th e Mushkodasa!"

If stlll further yo u should as k me

Say ing, "Who was Nawadaha?T ell us of this Nawadaha,"

I should answer your inquiries

Straightway in such words as follow:

" In th e Vale of T awasentha,

In th e green and silent valley,

By th e pleasant water-courses,

Dwelt the singer Nawadaha .•Round about the Indian village

Spread th e meadows an d th e cornfields,

An d beyond them stood th e forest,

Stood th e groves of singing pine-trees,

Green in Summer, white in Winter ,

Ever sighing, ever singing,

"And th e pleasant water-courses ,Yo u could t race them through th e valley,

By th e rushing in th e Spring-time,

By th e alders in th e Summer,

By th e white fog in the Autumn,By the black line in the Winter;

An d beside them dwelt th e singer,

In th e Vale of Tawasentha,

In th e green and silent va lley .

"There he sang of Hiawatha,Sang th e Song of Hiawatha,Sang his wondrous birth and being,

H ow he prayed an d ho w he fasted,

H ow he lived, an d toiled, an d suffered,

That the tribes of me n might prosper,

That he might advance his people !"Y e wh o love the haunts of Nature,

Love the sunshine of th e meadow,

Love the shadow of th e forest,

Love the wind among th e branches,

An d the rain-shower and the snow-storm,

And the rushing of great riversThrough their palisades of pine-trees,

An d th e thunder in the mountains,

Whose innumerable echoesFlap lik e eag les in their eyries ,-Listen to these wild traditions,To this Song of Hiawatha!

Ye who love a nation's legends,

Love the ballads of a people,

That like voices from afar off

Call to us to pause and listen,

Speak in tones so plain and childlike,Scarcely can the ea r distinguish

Whether they ar e sung or spoken;- Listen to this Indian Le gend ,

To this Song of Hiawatha !Y e whose hearts ar e fresh an d simple,

Who have faith in God an d Nature,

Who believe that in all ages

Every human heart is human,

That in even savage bosoms

There ar e lon gings , yearnings, strivingsFo r th e good th ey comprehend not,

That th e feeble hands an d helpless,

Groping blindly in th e darkness,

Touch God's right hand in that darkness

An d ar e lifted up and strengthened,-Listen to this simple story,

To this Song of Hiawatha!

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O n the Mountains of the Prairie,

O n th e great Re d Pipe-stone Quarry,Gitche Manito, the mighty,

He the Master of Life, descending,

O n th e re d crags of th e quarryStood erect, an d ca lled th e nations,

Called the tribes of me n together-,Filled th e pipe -with bark of -willow-,With th e bark of th e re d -willow-;

Breathed upon th e neighboring forest,Made its great boughs chafe together,

Till in flame they burst and kindled;

An d erect upon th e mountains,

Gitche Manito, the mighty,

Smoked the calumet, the Peace-Pipe,

As a signal to the nations.

An d th e smoke rose slow-ly, slow-ly,Through the tranquil air of morning,

First a single line of darkness,

Then a denser, bluer vapor,

Then a sno-w--white cloud unfolding,

Like the tree-tops of th e forest,

Ever rising, rising, rising,

Till it touched th e to p of heaven,

Till it broke against the heaven,

An d rolled out-ward all around it.

From the Vale of T a-wasentha,

From th e Valley of Wyoming,

From the groves of Tuscaloosa,

From the far-off Rocky Mountains,

From th e Northern lakes and rivers,

Al l th e tribes beheld th e signal,

Saw- the distant smoke ascending,

Th e Puk-wana of th e Peace-Pipe.Dow-n the rivers, o'er th e prairies,

Came th e -warriors of the nations,

Al l th e -warriors draw-n together

By th e signal of th e Peace-Pipe,

To th e Mountains of the Prairie,

To th e great Red Pipe-stone Quarry.An d they stood ther-e on th e meadow-,

With their -weapons an d their -war-gear,

Painted like the leaves of Autumn,Painted like the sk y of morning,

Wildly glaring at each other;

In their faces stern defiance,

In their hearts the feuds of ages,

Th e hereditary hatred,

Th e ancestral thirst of vengeance.

Gitche Manito, th e mighty,

Th e creator of the nations,

Spake to them -with voice majestic

As th e sound of far-off -waters

Falling into deep abysses,

Warning, chiding, spake in this -wise:-" 0 m y children ! M y poor children!

Listen to th e -words of -wisdom,

Listen to th e -words of -warning,

From th e lips of th e Great Spirit,

From th e Master of Life, -who made you!

" I have given yo u lands to hunt in ,I have given yo u streams to fish in,

I have given yo u bear an d bison,

I have given yo u ro e and reindeer,

I have given yo u brant and beaver,

Filled the marshes fu ll of -wild-fo-wl,Filled the rivers full of fishes;

W hy then ar e yo u no t contented?

W hy then -will yo u hunt each other?"I am -weary of your quarrels,

Weary of your -wars an d bloodshed,

Wear-y of your prayers for vengeance,

Of your -wranglings and dissensions;

Al l your strength is in your union,

Al l your danger is in discord;

Therefore be at peace henceforw-ard,

An d as brothers live together.

" I -will send a Prophet to you,

A Deliverer of th e nations,

Who shall guide yo u an d shall teach you,Who shall toil and suffer -with you.

If yo u listen to his counsels "Yo u -will multiply and prosper;

If his -warnings pass unheeded

Yo u -will fade a-way and perish !"Bathe now- in th e stream before you,Wash th e -war-paint from your faces,

Wash th e blood-stains from your fingers,

Bury your -war-clubs an d your -weapons,

Break th e re d stone from this quarry,

Mould and make it into Peace-Pipes,

Take th e reeds that grow- beside you,

Deck them -with your brightest f eathers,

Smoke th e calumet together,

An d as brothers live henceforw-ard !"From the river came th e -warriors,

Clean an d -washed from all their -war-paint ;On the banks their clubs they buried,

Buried all their -warlike -weapons.

An d in silence all th e -warriors

Then departed each one homew-ard.

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Downward through the evening twilight,

In th e days that ar e forgotten,

In th e unremembered ages,

From the full moon fell Nokomis,

Fell the beautiful Nokomis,

Sh e a wife bu t no t a mother.Sh e wa s sporting with her women,

Swinging in th e swing of grape-vines,

When her rival, th e rejected,

Full of jealousy and hatred,

Cu t th e leafy swing asunder,

Cu t in twain the twisted grape-vines,

An d Nokomis fell affrighted

Downward through th e evening twilight ,

On th e Muskoday, th e meadow,O n th e prairie full of blossoms.

"See ! a star falls ! " said th e people;

" From the sk y a star is falling ! "There among th e ferns an d mosses,

Th er e among th e prairie lilies,

On the Muskoday, th e meadow,

In th e moonlight an d th e starlight,

Fair Nokomis bore a daughter.

An d sh e called he r name Wenonah,

As th e first-born of he r daughters.

An d th e daughter of Nokomis

Grew up lik e th e prairie lilies,

Gr ew a tall and slender maiden,

With the beauty of th e moonlight,

With the beaut y of th e starlight.

An d Nokomis warned her often,

Sayi ng oft, an d oft repeating,

"Oh , beware of Mudjekeewis,

Of th e West-Wind, Mudjekeewis;

Listen no t to what he tells you;Li e no t down upon the meadow,

Stoop no t down among th e lilies,

Lest theW est-Wind come an d harm yo u ! "Bu t sh e heeded no t th e warning,

H ee ded no t those words of wisdom .

An d th e West-Wind came at evening,

Walking lightly o'er the prairie,

Whispering to the leaves and blossoms,

Bending low the flowers and grasses,

Found the beautiful Wenonah,

Lying th er e among th e lilies,

Wooed he r with hi s words of sweetness,

Wooed her with his soft caresses,

Till she bore a so n in sorrow,

Bore a so n of love and sorrow.

Thus wa s born my Hiawatha,Thus was born th e child of wonder ;.But th e daughter of Nokomis,

Hiawatha's gentle mother,

In he r anguish died desertedBy th e West-Wind, false an d faithless ,By th e heartles s Mudjekeewis.

By the shores of Gitche Gumee,By th e shining Big-Sea-Water,

Stood th e wigwam of Nokomis,

Da ughter of th e Moon, Nokomis.

Dark behind it rose the forest,

Rose th e black and gloomy pine-trees,

Rose th e firs with cones upon them;Bright before it beat the water,Beat the clear and sunny water,Beat th e shining Big-Sea-Water .

There the wrink led old Nokomis

Nursed the little Hiawatha,Rocked hi m in his linden cradle,

Bedded soft in moss an d rushes,

Safely bound with reindeer sinews;

Stilled his fretful wail by saying,"Hush ! the Naked Bear will hear thee!"Lulled hi m into slumber, singing,

"Ewa -ye a ! m y little owlet !Who is this, that lights the wigwam?With his great eyes lights th e wigwam?

Ewa-yea ! m y little owlet! "

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Scarce a twig moved

with hi s motion ,

Scm·ce a leaf wa s

stirred or r11stled.




Hi s education:

Chiabos teaches him to sing,Iagoo teaches him to shoot.

Then he said to Hiaw-atha:

" Go, m y son, into th e forest,

Where th e re d deer herd together,

Kill for us a famous roebuck,

Kill fo r us a deer w-ith antlers ! "Then, upon on e knee uprising,

Hiaw-atha aimed an arrow-;

Scarce a tw-ig moved w-ith his motion,

Scarce a leaf w-as stirred or rustled,

Bu t th e w-ary roebuck started,


all his hoofs together,

Listened w-ith one foot uplifted,

Leaped as if to meet th e arrow-;

Ah ! th e singing, fatal arrow-;

Like a w-asp it buzzed an d stung him!

Dead he lay there in th e forest,

By th e ford across th e river;Beat his timid heart no longer,

Bu t th e heart of Hiaw-atha

Throbbed an d shouted and exulted,

As he bore th e re d deer homew-ard,

An d Iagoo and Nokomis

Hailed his coming w-ith applauses.

From th e re d deer's hide Nokomis

Made a cloak for Hiaw-atha,

From th e re d deer's flesh Nokomis

Made a banquet in hi s honor.

Al l th e village came an d feasted,

Al l th e guests praised Hiaw-atha,Called hi m Strong-Heart , Soan-ge -taha!

Called hi m Loon-Heart, Mahn-go-taysee!

Pau-puk-keewis teaches him to dance.



"A s unto th e bow- the cord is,

So unto th e ma n is w-oman;Though she bends him, she obeys him,

Though she draw-s him, ye t she follow-s,Useless each w-ithout the other!

Thus the youthful Hiaw-atha

Said w-ithin himself and pondered,

Much perplexed by various feelings,

Listless, lo n ging, hoping, fearin g,Dreaming still of Minnehaha,

Of the love ly Laughing Water,

In th e land of th e Dacotahs.

"W ed a maiden of your people,"

Warning said th e old Nokomis;

"G o no t eastw-ard, go no t w-estw-ard,Fo r a stranger, w-hom w-e know- not!

Like a fire upon the hearth-stone

Is a neighbor's homely daughter,

Like the starlight or th e moonlight

Is the handsomest of strangers ! "Thus dissuading spake Nokomis,

An d m y Hiaw-atha answ-eredOnly this: "Dear old Nokomis,

Very pleasant is th e firelight,

Bu t I like the starlight better,

Better do I like the moonlight! "Gravely then said old Nokomis:

"Bring no t here an idle maiden,

Bring no t here a useless w-oman,

Hands unskillful, feet unw-illing;

Bring a w-ife w-ith nimble fingers,

H eart and hand that move together,

Feet that run on w-illing errands ! "

Smiling answ-ered Hiaw-atha:

"In th e land of th e Dacotahs

Lives th e Arrow--maker's 1daughter,Minnehaha, Laughing Water,

Handsomest of all th e w-omen.

I w-ill bring he r to your w-igw-am,Sh e shall ru n upon your errands,

B e your starlight, moonlight, firelight,

Be th e sunligh t of my people ! "

Still dissuadin g said okomis:

" Bring no t to my lod ge a stranger

From th e land of th e Dacotahs !Very fierce ar e th e Dacotahs,

Often is there w-ar betw-een us,

There ar e feuds ye t unforgotten,

Wounds that ache and still ma y open! "

Laughing answ-ered Hiaw-atha:

"For that reason , if no other,

Would I w-ed the fair Dacotah,

That ou r tribes might be united,

That th e old feuds might be forgotten,

An d old w-ounds be h ealed forever! "

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Various customs and ceremonies are introduced, older than the coming of the ~ V h i t llfan to this

continent,-how much older, no one knows.



On th e outskirts of th e forest,

'Twixt th e shadow and the sunshine,

Herds of fallow deer were feeding,

Bu t they saw not Hiawatha;

To his bo w he whispered,"Fai l

not!"To his arrow whispered, " Swerve no t !"Sent it singing on it s errand,

To the re d heart of th e roebuck;

Threw th e deer across his shoulder,

An d sped forward without pausing.A t the doorway of his wigwam

Sa t th e ancient Arrow-maker,In th e land of th e Da cotahs,

Making arrow-heads of jasper,

Arrow-heads of chalcedony.

A t his side, in all he r beauty,

Sa t th e love ly Minnehaha,

Sat his daughter, Laughing Water,Plaiting mats of flags and rushes;Of the past th e old man's thoughts were,An d th e maiden 's of th e future.

Sh e wa s thinking of a hunter,

From another tribe and country,

Young and tall an d very handsome,

Who on e morning, in th e Spring-time,

Came to bu y he r father's arrows,Sa t and rested in th e wigwam,

Lingered long about the doorway,

Looking back as he departed.

Sh e had heard he r father praise him,Praise his courage and his wisdom;Would he come again fo r arrowsTo the Falls of Minnehaha?On the mat he r hands lay idle,

And her eyes were very dreamy.

Through their thoughts they heard aHeard a rustlin g in th e branches, [footstep ,An d with glowing cheek and forehead,

With the deer upon his shoulders,

Suddenly from out the woodlands

Hiawatha stood before them.

Straight the ancient Arrow-makerLooked up gravely from his labor,

Laid aside the unfinished arrow.·Then uprose the Laughing Water,

From the ground fair Minnehaha

Laid aside he r ma t unfinisheJ,

Brought forth food and set before them,

Water brought them from th e brooklet,

Gave them food in earthen vessels,

Gave them drink in bowls of bass-wood,Listened while the guest wa s speaking,

Listened while he r father answered,Bu t no t once he r lips sh e opened,

No t a single word she uttered.

Yes, as in a dream she listened

To the words of Hiawatha,As he talked of old Nokomis,

Who had nursed hi m in his childhood,

As he told of his companions,

Chibiabos, th e musician,

An d th e very strong man, K wasind,

An d of happiness and plenty

In the land of th e Ojibways,

In the pleasant land an d peaceful.

"After many years of warfare,

Many years of strife an d bloodshed,

There is peace between th e Ojibways

An d th e tribe of the Dacotahs."

Thus continued Hiawatha,An d then added, speaking slowly,

"That this peace m ay la s± forever,

And our hands be clasped more close\ r,And our hearts be more united,

Give me as my wife this maiden,

Minnehaha, Laughing Water,Loveliest of Da cotah women! "

An d th e ancient Arrow-makerPaused a moment er e he answered,

Smoked a little while in silence,

Looked at Hiawatha proudly,

Fondly looked at Laughing Water,An d made answer very grave ly:"Yes , if Minnehaha wishes;

Le t your h eart speak, Minnehaha! "And the lo vel y Laughing Water

Seemed more lo ve ly, as she stood there,

Neither willing no r reluctant,

As she went to Hiawatha.Softly took th e seat b e s i d ~ him,

While sh e said, and blushed to sa y it ,

" I will follow you, my husband! "

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And she follows j

wh ere he leadsLeaving all thin gsfor the strange r .

From the -wigwa mhe departed,

Leading with him

Laughing Wa ter.

SCENE VI Continued


This was Hiawatha's wooing!

Thus it wa s he wo n th e daughter

Of th e ancient Arrow-maker,

In th e land of th e D a c o t ~ h s !From the wigwam he departed,

Leading with hi m Laughing Water:Hand in hand they went together,

Through the woodland an d th e meadow,

Left th e ol d ma n standing lonely

A t the doorway of his wigwam,

Heard th e Falls of Minnehaha

Calling to them from the distance,

Crying to them from afar off,

" Fare thee well, 0 Minnehaha ! "

And the ancient Arrow-makerTurned again unto his labor,

Sa t down by hi s sunny doorway,

Murmuring to himself, an d saying:

"Thus it is ou r daughters leave us,

Those we love, and those wh o love us !Just when they have learned to help us,

When we ar e old and lean upon themComes a youth with flaunting feathers,

With his flute of reeds, a stranger

Wanders piping through th e village,

Beckons to th e fairest maiden,An d sh e follows where he leads her,

Leaving all things for th e stranger! "

Pleasant wa s the journey homeward,

Through interminable forests,

Over meadow, over mountain,

Over river, hill and hollow.

Short it seemed to Hiawatha,Though they journeyed very slowly,

Though his pace he checked an d slackened

To the steps of Laughing Water.

Thus it wa s they journeyed homeward;

Thus it was that HiawathaTo the lodge of old Nokomis

Brought the moonlight, starlight, firelight,

Brought the sunshine of his people,

Minnehaha, Laughing Water,

Handsomest of all the women

In th e land of th e Dacotahs,

In the lan d of handsome women.

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Sumptuous was the feast Nokomis

Made at Hiawatha's -wedding.





Sumptuous wa s th e feast Nokomis

Made at Hiawatha's wedding;

Al l th e bowls were made of bass-wood,

White and polished very smoothly,

All the spoons of horn of bison,

Black an d polished very smoothly.

She had sent through all th e village

Messengers with wands of willow,A s a sign of invitation,

A s a token of th e feasting;

An d th e wedding guests assembled,

Clad in all their richest raiment,

Robes of fu r an d belts of wampum,

Splendid with their paint and plumage,Beautiful with beads and tassels.

First they at e th e sturgeon, Nahma,And the pike, th e Maskenozha,

Caught and cooked by old Nokomis;

Then on pemican they feasted,

Pemican an d buffalo marrow,

Haunch of deer and hump of bison,

Yellow cakes of the Mondamin,An d the wild rice of the river.

But th e gracious Hiawatha,

An d the lovely Laughing Water,

An d th e careful old Nokomis,

Tasted no t th e food before them,

Only waited on th e others,

Only served their guests in silence.

And when all th e guests ha d finished,

Old Nokomis, brisk an d busy,From an ample pouch of otter,

Filled the red stone pipes for smoking

With tobacco from th e South-land,

Mixed with bark of th e ved willow,

And wi th herbs and leaves of fragrance.Then they said to Chibiabos,

To the friend of Hiawatha,

To the sweetest of a ll singers,To the best of all musicians,

" Sing to us , 0 Chibiabos !

Songs of love and songs of longing,

That th e feast ma y be more joyous,

That th e time m ay pass more gaily,

And our guests be more contented ! "

An d th e gentle Chibiabos

Sang in accents sweet an d tender,

Sang in tones of deep emotion,

Songs of love and songs of longing;

Looking still at Hiawatha,

Looking at fair Laughing Water.

Then sh e said, "0 Pau-Puk-Keewis,

Dcrnce fo r us your mer ry dances,

Dance th e Beggar's Dance to please us,

That th e feast ma y be more joyous,

That the time m ay pass more gaily,

An d ou r guests be more contented ! ''Then the handsome Pau-Puk-Keewis,

H e th e idle Y enadizze,

H e th e merry mischief-maker,

Whom the people called th e Storm-Fool,

Rose among th e guests assembled.

First he danced a solemn measure,

Very slow in step and gesture,

In an d ou t among th e pine-trees,

Through the shadows an d th e sunshine,

Treading softly like a panther.

Then more swift ly an d still swifter,

Whirling, spinning round in circles,Leaping o'er the guests assembled,

Eddying round an d round th e wigwam,

Till th e leaves went whirling with him,

Till the dust an d wind togetherSwept in eddies round about him.

Thus the merry Pau-Puk-Keewis

Danced his Beggar's Dance to please them,And, returning, sat down laughing

There among th e guests assembled,

Sa t and fanned himself serenely

With his fan of turkey-feathers.

Songs and dances used at Ojibway weddings,

from earliest times, are introduced.

The wedding feast closes with the GamblingScene.

"Ha r k you" shouted Pau-Puk-KeewisAs he entered at th e doorway;

"I am tired of all this ta lking ,

Tired of old Iagoo's stories,

Tired of Hiawatha's wisdom .

Here is something to amuse you,

Better than this endless talking."Then from out hi s pouch of wolf-skin

Forth he drew, with solemn manner,All the game of Bowl and Counters,

Pugasaing, with thirteen pieces.

White on on e side were they painted,A nd vermilion on the other;

Tw o Kenabeeks or great serpents,

Tw o Ininewug or wedge-men,

On e great war-club, Pugamaugun,

An d on e slender fish, th e Keego,

Four round pieces, Ozawabeeks,

A nd three Sheshebwug or ducklings.

All were made of bone and painted,

All except the Ozawabeeks ;

These were brass, on on e side burnished

And were black upon th e other. '

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SCENE VII -Continued


In a wooden bowl he placed them,Shook an d jostled them together,

Threw them on the ground before him,Thus exclaiming and ex p laining :" Re d side up ar e all th e pieces,

An d one great Kenabeek standing

On th e bright side of a brass piece

On a burnished Ozawabeek;

Thirteen tens and eight are counted."

Then again he shook th e pieces,

Shook and jostled them together,

Threw them· on th e ground before him,

Still exclaiming an d explaining :" White are both th e great Kenabeeks,

White the Ininewug, the wedge-men,Red are all the other pieces;

Five tens an d an eight are counted."

Thus he taught th e game of hazard,

Thus displayed it an d explained it,

Running through its various changes,

Various changes, various meanings;

Twenty curious eyes stared at him,

Fu ll of eagerness stared at him.

" Many games," said old Iagoo,

"Many games of skill and hazard

Have I seen in different nations,

Have I played in different countries.

H e wh o plays with old lagoo

Must have very nimble fingers ;Though you think yourself so skillful

I can beat you, Pau-Puk-Keewis,

I ca n even give yo u lessons

In yo ur game of Bowl an d Counters ! "So they sat and played together,

Al l th e old me n an d the young men,

Played for dresses, weapons, wampum,Played till midnight, played till morning,

Played until th e Yenadizze,

Till th e cunning Pau-Puk-Keewis,

Of their t reasures had despoiled them,Of the best of all their dresses,

Shirts of deer-skin, robes of ermine,

Belts of wampum, crests of feathers,

Warlike weapons, pipes an d pouches .Twenty eyes glared wildly at him,

Like th e eyes of wolves glared at him.

Said the lucky Pau-Puk-Keewis:" In m y wigwam I am lonely,

In m y wanderings an d adventures

I have need of a companion,

Fain would have a Meshinauwa,

An attendant and pipe-bearer.I will venture all these winnings,

Al l these garments heaped about me ,

Al l this wampum, all these feathers,

On a single throw will ventureAl l against th e young ma n yonder ! "'Twas a youth of sixteen summers,

'Twas a nephew of Iagoo;

Face -in-a-Mist, th e people called him.

As th e fire burns in a pipe-head

Dusky red beneath the ashes,

So beneath his shaggy eyebrows

Glowed th e eyes of old I agoo.

" Ug h ! " he answered very fiercely;

" Ug h ! " they answered all and each one.

Seized th e wooden bowl the old man,

Closely in his bony fin ge rs,

Clutched th e fatal bowl, Onagon,

Shook it fiercely an d with fury,Made th e pieces ring together

As he threw them down before him.

Re d were both the great Kenabeeks,Re d th e Ininewug, th e wedge-men,

Re d th e Sheshebwug, the ducklings,

Black th e four brass Ozawabeeks,

White alone th e fish, th e Keego;Only five th e pieces counted!

Then the smiling Pau-Puk-KeewisShook th e bowl an d threw th e pieces;

Lightly in the air he tossed them,

An d they fell about him scattered;

Dark and bright th e Ozawabeeks,

Re d an d white the other pieces,

An d upright among th e others

One Ininewug was standing,

Even as crafty Pau-Puk-KeewisStood alone among the players,

Saying, "Five tens! Mine the game i s ! "

Twenty eyes glared at hi m fiercely,

Like th e eyes of wolves glared at him,

As he turned an d left th e wigwam,

Followed by his Meshinauwa,

By the nephew of Iagoo,

By th e tall and graceful stripling,Bearing in his arms th e winnings,

Shirts of deer-skin, robes of ermine,

Belts of wampum, pipes and weapons.

"Carry them," said Pau-Puk-Ke ew is,

Pointing with hi s fa n of feathers,

" To my wigwam far to eastward,

On th e dunes of Na gow W udioo!"H ot an d red with smoke an d gambling

Were the eyes of Pau-Puk-Keewis ·As he came forth to the freshness

Of the pleasant summer morning .Al l th e birds were singing gaily,

Al l the streamlets flowing swiftly

An d th e heart of Pau-Puk-Keewis

Sang with pleasure as th e birds sing,

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SCENE VII -Continued


Beat with tr iumph like th e streamlet s,

As he wandered throu gh th e village,

In th e early gray of morning,

With his fan of turke y-feathers,

With his plumes an d tufts of swan's down,

Till he reached th e farthest wigwam,Reach ed th e lod ge of Hiawatha.

Silent wa s it an d deserted;

No on e me t hi m at th e doorway,No on e came to bi d hi m welcome;

"Al l ar e gone ! th e lodge is empty ! "Thus it wa s spake Pau-Puk-Keewis,In his h eart resolving mischief , -" Go ne is wary Hiawatha,

Gone th e silly Laughin g Water,Gone Nokomis, th e old woman,An d th e lod ge is left un guarded ! "

With a st ea l thy step h e entered,

Round the lod ge in wild disord erThrew th e household things about him,

Piled to gethe r in confusionBowls of wood an d earthen kettles,

Robes of Buffalo an d beaver,

Skins of otter, lynx and ermine,

As an insult to Nokomis,As a taunt to Minnehaha.

Full of wrath was Hiawatha

When he came into th e village,

Found th e people in confusion,

Heard of all the misdemeanors,

Al l th e malice and the mischiefOf th e cunning Pau-Puk-Keewis.

Hard his breath came through his nostrils,

Through hi s teeth he buzzed an d muttered

Words of anger an d resentment,H ot and humming like a hornet.

" I will slay this Pau-Puk-Keewis,Slay this mischief-maker! " said he.

"Notso long and wide the world is,No t so rude and rough th e wa y is ,

That my wrath shall no t attain him,

That my ve ngeance shall no t reach him ! "

Then in swift pursuit departed

Hiawatha an d the hunters

On th e trail of Pau-Puk-Keewis.

Pau-Puk-Ke ew is is finall!; surrounded at th e

top of Nanaboz h's Rock. S eeing that all means of

escape are cut off, he asks th e King of the Beavers

to ctzange him into a beav er and leaps into th e

water. His request is granted but the braves kill

the beaver.

The Scalp Dan ce.

The Restoration of Pau-Puk-Keewis to life, to

human form, and to all his tribal rights.

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Oh, the longan d dr eary

Winter !Oh, t,he cold

and cruel

Winter !



Oh, the lon g an d dr eary Winter !Oh, the cold an d cruel Winter !Ever thicker, thicker, thicker

Froze th e ic e on lake and river,Ever deeper, deeper, deeper

Fell th e snow o'er al l th e landscape,

Fell th e covering snow, an d drifted

Through the forest, round the village.

Into Hiawatha's wigwamCame tw o other guests as silent

As th e ghosts were, an d as gloomy,

Waited not to be invited,

Di d not parley at the doorway,

Sa t there without word of welcome

In th e seat of Laughing Water;Looked w ith haggard eyes and hollow

A t th e face of Laughing Water.An d th e foremost said : "Behold me !

I am Famine, Bukadawin!"A nd th e other said: " Behold me !I am Fever, Ahkosewin!"

An d th e lovely MinnehahaShuddered as they looked upon her,Shuddered at the words they uttered,

La y down on h er bed in silence,

Hid her face, bu t made no answer;La y there trembling, freezing, burning

At th e looks they cast upon her,

A t th e fearful words they uttered.

Forth into the empty forest

Rushed the maddened Hiawatha;

In his heart wa s deadly sorrow,In his face a stony firmness;

On hi s brow the sweat of anguish

Started, but it froze an d fell not.Wrapped in furs and armed fo r hunting,

With hi s mighty bow of ash-tree,

With hi s quiver full of arrows,With hi s mittens, Miniekahwun,Into th e vast an d vacant forest

On his snow-shoes strode he forward.

"Gitche Manito, the Mighty! "Cried he with his face uplifted

In that bitter hour of anguish,

"Give your children food, 0 Father !Give us food, or we must perish!

Give me food fo r Minnehaha,

F or my dying Minnehaha ! "Through the far-resounding forest,

Tht·ough th e forest vast an d vacantRang that cr y of desolation,

But there came no other answerThan th e echo of his crying,

Than the echo of th e woodlands,

" Minnehaha ! Minnehaha! "

In th e wigwam with Nokomis,

With those gloomy guests that watched her,

With the Famine an d th e Fever,Sh e wa s lying, th e Beloved,

Sh e th e dying Minnehaha.

"Ha rk ! " sh e said, " I hear a rushin g,Hear a roaring and a rushing ,Hear th e Falls of MinnehahaCalling to me from a distance ! ""N o , m y child ! " said old Nokomis,

' "Tis th e night-wind in th e pi ne-trees!"" Look ! " sh e said, " I see m y father

Standing lon el y at hi s doorway,Beckoning to me from hi s wigwam

In th e land of th e Dacotahs ! ""No , my child!" said old Nokomis,

" 'Tis the smoke that waves and beckons ! "

"Ah! " said she, "The eyes of Pauguk

Glare upon me in the darkness,

I ca n feel hi s ic y fingers

Clasping mine amid the darkness!

Hiawatha! Hiawatha! "

An d th e desolate Hiawatha,

F ar away amid th e forest,Miles away among th e mountains,

Heard that sudden cr y of anguish,

Heard th e voice of MinnehahaCalling to him in the darkness,

" Hiawatha ! Hiawatha! "

Over snow-fields waste an d pathless,

Under snow-encumbered branches,

Homeward hurried Hiawatha,Empty-handed , heavy-hearted,Heard Nokomis moaning, wailing:

"W ahonowin ! W ahonowin !Would that I ha d perished fo r you,Would that I were dead as yo u ar e !W ahonowin ! W ahonowin ! "

An d he rushed into th e wigwam,Saw the ol d Nokomis slowlyRocking to and fro and moaning,

Sa w hi s love ly MinnehahaLying de ad an d cold before him,

An d his bursting heart within hi m

Uttered such a cr y of anguish

That th e forest moaned and shuddered,

That th e very stars in heavenShook and trembled with hi s anguish.

Then he sat down, still an d speechless,

On th e be d of Minnehaha,

At th e feet of Laughing Water,A t those willing feet, that neverMore would lightly ru n to meet him,

Never more would lightly follow .

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SCENE VIII-Continued


With both hands his face he covered;

Seven long days and nights he sa t there,

As if in a .swoon he sat there,Speechless, motionless, unconscious

O f th e daylight or the darkness.

Then they buried Minnehaha;In the snow a grave they made her,

In th e forest deep and darksome,

Underneath th e moaning hemlocks;

Clothed he r in he r richest garments,

Wrapped he r in he r robes of ermine,

Covered he r with snow, li ke ermine;Thus they buried Minnehaha.

An d at night a fire wa s lighted,

On her grave four times wa s kindled,Fo r he r soul upon its journeyTo the I slands of th e blessed.

From his doorway HiawathaSaw it burning in the forest,

Lighting up th e gloomy hemlocks;

From hi s sleepless be d uprising,

From th e bed of Minnehaha,

Stood an d watched it at the doorway,That it might no t be extinguished.Might no t lea ve he r in th e darkness.

"Farewel l !" said he , "Minnehaha!Farewell, 0 m y Laughing Water!Al l my heart is buried with you,Al l my thoughts go onward with you !

Come not back again to labor,

Come not back again to suffer,

Where th e Famine an d th e FeverWear the heart an d waste the body.

Soon m y task will be completed,Soon your footsteps I sh all follow

To the Islands of th e Blessed,

To the Kingdom of Ponemah,

To the Land of th e Hereafter! "

With botl;t hands his face he cov-e,ed.1



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From hi s wanderings far to eastward,

From th e regions of th e morning,

From th e shining land of W abun,

Homeward no w returned Ia goo ,Th e great traveler, th e great boaster,

Fu ll of ne w and strange adventures,

Marvels many an d many wonders.And the people of th e vi lla ge

Listened to hi m as he told them

Of his marvelous adventures,

Laughing answered him in this wise:" Ug h ! it is indeed Ia goo !No on e else beholds such wonders! "

H e had seen, he said, a waterBigger than th e Big-Sea-Water,

Broader than the Gitche Gurnee,

Bitter so that none could drink it!At each other looked th e warriors,Looked the women at each other,

Smiled, an d said, " I t cannot be so !

Kaw! " they said, " it cannot be so !"O'er it, said he, o'er this waterCame a great canoe with pinions,

A canoe with wings came flying,

Bigger than a grove of pine-trees,

Taller than the tallest tr ee-tops !An d th e ol d me n an d th e women

Looked an d tittered at each other;"Kaw !" they said, "w e don't believe i t!"

From its mouth, he said, to greet him,

Came W aywassimo, the lightning,

Came th e thunder, Annemeekee!A nd th e warriors an d the womenLaughed aloud at poor Ia goo;

"Kaw !" they said," what tales yo u tell us!"In it , said he , came a people,

In th e great canoe with pinions

Came , he said, a hundred warriors;

Painted white were all their faces,An d with hair their chins were covered!An d th e wat·riors an d the womenLaughed and shouted in derision,

Like the ravens on the tree-tops,

Like the crows upon th e hemlocks."Kaw !" they said, "what lies yo u tell us !

Do no t think that we believe them ! "Only Hiawatha lau ghed not,

Bu t he gravely spake and answeredTo their jeering an d their jesting:

"True is all Iagoo tells us ;I have seen it in a vision,Seen th e great canoe with pinions,

Seen th e people with white faces,

Seen th e coming of this bearded

People of th e wooden ve ssel

From th e regions of th e morning,

From th e shining land of W abun.

And the noble Hiawatha,With his hands aloft extended,

Held aloft in sign of welcome,Waited, full of exultation,

Till the birch canoe with paddles

Grated on the shining pebbles,

Stranded on the sandy margin,

Till th e Black-Robe chief, th e Pa le-face ,With th e cross upon his bosom,

Landed on th e sandy margin.

Th en th e jo you s Hiawatha

Cried aloud an d spake in this wise:"Beautiful is th e sun, 0 strangers ,W hen yo u come so fa r to se e us !All our town in peace awaits you;All our doors stand open for you ;Yo u shall enter all our wigwams,

F or the heart 's right hand we give yo u ."N eve r bloomed the earth so gaily,

Never shone the sun so brightly,

As today they shine and blossom

When yo u come so far to see us !Never was our lake so tranquil,

No r so free from rocks and sand-bars;

Fo r your birch canoe in passing

Ha s removed both rock an d sand-bar.

"Never before ha d ou r tobacco

Such a sweet and pleasant flavor,

Never th e broad leaves of ou r corn-fieldsWere so beautiful to lo ok on,

As they seem to us this morning,

When yo u come so fa r to see us ! "And the Black-Robe chief made answer .

Stammered in his speech a little,Speaking words ye t unfamiliar:

"Peace be with you, Hiawatha,

Peace be with yo u an d your people,Peace of prayer and peace of pardon,

Peace of Christ and jo y of Mary! "Then th e generous Hiawatha

Le d th e strangers to hi s wigwam,Seated them on skins of bison,

Seated them on skins of ermine,

An d th e careful ol d NokomisBrought them food in bowls of bass-wood.Water brought in birchen dippers,

An d th e calumet, th e Peace-pipe,

Filled and lighted for their smoking.

All the ol d me n of th e village,

Al l the warriors of th e nation,

All the Jossakeeds, th e prophets,

Th e magicians, th e W abenos,

A nd th e medicine-men, th e Medas,

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S CE N E IX Continued


Came to bid the strangers welcome;

" I t is well ," they said, "0 brothers,

That yo u come so far to see us !"

In a circle ' round the doorway,

With their pipes they sa t in silence,

Waiting to behold th e strangers,

Waiting to receive their message;Till th e Black-Robe chief, th e Pale-face,

From th e wigwam came to greet them,

Stammering in his speech a little,

Speaking words ye t unfamiliar ;

" I t is well ," they said, "0 brother,

That yo u come so far to see us !"

Then th e Black-Robe chief, th e prophet,

Told his message to th e people,

Told the purport of his mission,

Told them of the Virgin Mary,And her blessed Son, the Saviour;

H ow in distant lands an d ages

H e ha d lived on earth, as w e do ;

H ow he fasted, prayed and labored;

H ow th e J ews, the tribe accursed,

Mocked him, scourged him, crucified him;

H ow he rose from where they laid him,

Walked again with hi s disciples,

An d ascended into heaven.

An d th e chiefs made answer, saying:

"W e have listened to your message,

W e have heard your words of wisdom,

W e will think on what yo u tell us."

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From hi s place rose Hiawatha,Bade farewell to old Nokomis,Spake in whispers, spake in this wise,

Did no t wake th e guests that slumbered:

" I am going, 0 Nokomis,O n a long an d distant journey,To the portals of th e Sunset,

To the regions of th e home-wind,Of th e Northwest Wind, Keewaydin,Bu t these guests I leave behind me,

In your watch an d ward I lea ve them;Se e that never harm comes near them,

Se e that never fear molests them,Never danger no r suspicion,

Never want of food or shelter,In th e lodge of Hiawatha! "

Forth into th e village went he ,

Bade farewell to all the warriors,Bade farewell to all th e young men,

Spake persuading, spake in this wise:

" I am going, 0 m y people,

O n a long an d distant journey;Many moons and 1nany wintersWill have come and will have vanished,

Ere I come again to see you.Bu t m y guests I leave behind m e;Listen to their words of wisdom,

Listen to th e truth they t ell you,Fo r the Master of Life ha s sent themFrom th e land of light and morning ! "

On th e shore stood Hiawatha,Turned an d waved hi s hand at parting;

On th e clear and luminous waterLaunched hi s birch canoe fo r sailing

From th e pebbles of th e margin

Shoved it forth into the water;Whispered to it , "Westward! Westward ! "And with sp eed it darted forward.

And the people from the margin

Watched him floating, rising, sinking,

Till th e birch canoe seemed lifted

High into that se a of splendor,

Till it sank into th e vaporsLike the ne w moon slowly, slowlySinking in th e purple distance.

An d they said " Farewell forever! "Said, "Farewell, 0 Hiawatha ! "An d th e forests, dark an d lonely ,Moved through al l their depths of darkness,

Sighed, "Farewell, 0 Hiawatha ! "And the waves upon th e margin

Rising, rippling on th e pebbles,

Sobbed, " Farewell, 0 Hiawatha! "And the heron, th e Shuh-shuh-gah,

From he r haunts among th e fen-lands,

Screamed, "Farewell , 0 Hiawatha!"Thus departed Hiawatha,

Hiawatha th e Beloved,

In th e glo ry of th e sunset,

In th e purple mists of evening,

To th e 1·egions of th e ho me- wind,Of th e Northwest Wind, Keewaydin,

To the Islands of th e Blessed,

To the kingdom of Ponemah,

To the land of the Hereafter.

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Du o· ton e Reproduct ion by

Th e Dean-Hicks Company

Grand Rapids . Mich igan

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