Pokoh The Old Man
Source: Myths And Legends Of California And The Old Southwest
Pai Ute (near Kern River, Cal.)
Pokoh, Old Man, they say, created the world. Pokoh had many thoughts. He
had many blankets in which he carried around gifts for men. He created
every tribe out of the soil where they used to live. That is why an
Indian wants to live and die in his native place. He was made of the
same soil. Pokoh did not wish men to wander and travel, but to remain in
Long ago, Sun was a man, and was bad. Moon was good. Sun had a quiver
full of arrows, and they are deadly. Sun wishes to kill all things.
Sun has two daughters (Venus and Mercury) and twenty men kill them; but
after fifty days, they return to life again.
Rainbow is the sister of Pokoh, and her breast is covered with flowers.
Lightning strikes the ground and fills the flint with fire. That is the
origin of fire. Some say the beaver brought fire from the east, hauling
it on his broad, flat tail. That is why the beaver's tail has no hair on
it, even to this day. It was burned off.
There are many worlds. Some have passed and some are still to come. In
one world the Indians all creep; in another they all walk; in another
they all fly. Perhaps in a world to come, Indians may walk on four legs;
or they may crawl like snakes; or they may swim in the water like fish.
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