Words And Places native literature from the american southwest

Running on the Edge of the Rainbow: Laguna Stories and Poems
Leslie Marmon Silko


Laughing and Laughing About Something That Happened at Mesita

But down at Mesita
they always remember
the night at Laguna
when a man was walking up the hill
to the toilet
and he heard
funny sounds
coming from
one of those
old barns
across from the parish hall.

He thought
he better check up on things
just in case
some animal was trapped in there
or something like that.

So he opened the door
shined his flashlight in there
and here was this man
really respected in the community
always working hard
and never even drunk.
Well there he was
with this big fat woman
she was married too
and had twelve kids.

And there they were in
the middle of winter with
no clothes on.

This poor man who found them
he didn't know what to say
so he closed the door again
and he went back home.

He even forgot
he had to go to the toilet.

down at Mesita
they laugh too,
and they always have to say
that guy
sure was taking a chance
messing around
with a woman as big as her.
All she'd have to do
is roll over on him
And that
would be
the end.

I was always given to feel, and it was by people like anthros, to feel that , that to be a worthy human being, if you were coming from a pueblo, that you should have, you should know the stories just us they are in the BAE. I won't do that. I won't go to those things and do what they did. And the reason, now the more I think about it, that, you know, I don't have to is because, actually, I guess I really did in a funny kind of way through all those years, I guess from the time I was as little as Caz all the way up, hear quite a few stories. Somewhere along the line, I heard in what would be passed off now as rumor or gossip, I could hear through all of that, I could hear something too, that there was a kind of continuum or continuation, despite the fact that in 1930 Elsie Clews Parsons wrote off Laguna as being a lost cause, and said it had no kiva or something. And the same went, going for the "oral tradition." I guess somewhere along the line, I always loved those kinds of stories so much that the things in the BAE sort of looked dead and alien. And I figured, I don't know, I couldn't do anything with them anyway, even though theoretically they're supposed to have come from here.

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Running on the Edge of the Rainbow: Laguna Stories and Poems

By This Song I Walk: Navajo Songs | Seyewailo: The Flower World Yaqui Deer Songs | The Origin of the Crown Dance: An Apache Narrative and Ba'ts'oosee: An Apache Trickster Cycle | Iisaw: Hopi Coyote Stories & Hopi Songs | Natwaniwa: A Hopi Philosophical Statement | Running on the Edge of the Rainbow: Laguna Stories and Poems | Songs of My Hunter Heart: Laguna Songs and Poems | A Conversation with Vine Deloria, Jr. | Home