The Boy And The Beast

Pima (Arizona)

Once an old woman lived with her daughter and son-in-law and their

little boy. They were following the trail of the Apache Indians. Now

whenever a Pima Indian sees the trail of an Apache he draws a ring

around it; then he can catch him sooner. And these Pimas drew circles

around the trail of the Apaches they were following, but one night when

they were asleep, the Apaches came down upon them. They took the man and

younger woman by the hair and shook them out of their skins, just as one

would shake corn out of a sack. So the boy and the old woman were left


Now these two had to live on berries and anything they could find, and

they wandered from place to place. In one place a strange beast, big

enough to swallow people, camped in the bushes near them. The

grand-mother told the boy not to go near these bushes. But the boy took

some sharp stones in his hands, and went toward them. As he came near,

the great monster began to breathe. He began to suck in his breath and

he sucked the boy right into his stomach. But with his sharp stones the

boy began to cut the beast, so that he died. Then the boy made a hole

large enough to climb out of.

When his grandmother came to look for him, the boy met her and said, "I

have killed that monster."

The grandmother said, "Oh, no. Such a little boy as you are to kill such

a great monster!"

The boy said, "But I was inside of him. just look at the stones I cut

him with."

Then the grandmother went softly up to the bushes, and looked at the

monster. It was full of holes, just as the little boy had said.

Then they moved down among the berry bushes and had all they wanted to


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