February 17, 2003

Mother, we will never leave you


KEYWORDS: ojibewe legend ojibwa legends ojibway legend chippewa legend oral story oral tradition Indian story Indian myth children’s story poster posters art print art prints

AUTHOR: Ojibwe Oral Story

After the earth was made, there were only trees, grasses, and flowers upon it. There were no birds, no animals, no insects. On the whole earth there was only one living being- Spirit Woman.

For a long time Spirit Woman was content to live alone. She made mats and baskets and twines. She picked berries and fruits. She made clothes for herself. She was always very busy.

But after living alone for many years, Spirit Woman began to long for a friend. The more she thought about a friend, the lonelier she became. At last the Great Spirit, Kitche Manitu, sent her a husband to ease her loneliness. The two are very happy together.

Williamson Raven - Serenity


Williamson Raven

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It was not long until the Spirit Woman gave birth-first to a ruffed grouse. On the same day she gave birth, one by one, to all the birds that inhabit the earth and fly in the sky. But only the ruffled grouse stayed with her.

Soon after they were born, all the other birds flew away. Spirit Woman was sad when they left her. “I will never leave you, Mother” promised the ruffed grouse. “I will always be near you, no matter where you are.” Spirit Woman appreciated the loyalty of the ruffed grouse and was kind and gentle to the bird.

On another day, Spirit Woman gave birth for a second time – first to a rabbit and then one by one, the rest of the animals. This time only the rabbit stayed and comforted her mother. All the other creatures, the bear, the moose, the lynx, the mouse, and all the rest fled as soon as they could.

“I will never leave you mother” promised the rabbit. “I will always stay close to your side.”

Because the rabbit was so devoted, Spirit Woman gave the little creature a gentle nature. Because the rabbit was so loyal, Spirit Woman created a rock in the form of a rabbit in the place where she had given birth. In later years people called the rock “The Sitting Rabbit”.

Charles Bibbs - Mystic Holy Man

Mystic Holy Man

Charles Bibbs

16 in x 16 in

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| Mounted

Then Spirit Woman gave birth a third time, this time near the sea. One by one, Spirit Woman brought a forth all the water creatures, beginning with the whitefish. The whitefish was the only on that stayed to look after the Spirit Woman. All the other fish soon deserted their mother.

Even though the Spirit Woman had a reason to be sad when all the creatures left her, she found contentment with the ruffed grouse, the rabbit, and the white fish. They always stayed close to her.

Ojibwe / Chippewa Legends
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