the Sun Follows the Moon
The Legend of the Rock House
Maidu Indian Tale - As Told By Cat
ago there was no light and all the people and
all the animals lived in darkness. There was no
light because Mother Moon and Father Sun lived
inside a rock house from which no light escaped.
One day while Coyote was sitting around being
bored, an idea for a wonderful prank came to him.
"Wouldn't it be fun to dump fleas into the rock
house and all over Father Sun and Mother Moon?"
thought Coyote with a smile. Chuckling to himself,
he began to gather fleas and put them in bags.
When he had collected enough fleas, he picked
up the bags and started off to Rock House. On
his way he met Rabbit. Unable to contain himself,
Coyote began to brag about his bags of fleas.
Rabbit laughed and said that he didn't believe
him, and this started an argument. Coyote was
holding a bag of fleas when Rabbit tried to take
it away from him and this started a tug of war.
"I got it!" cried Rabbit as he snatched the bag
from Coyote. But when rabbit yanked the bag it
opened up and showered them both with fleas. To
this day, Rabbit and Coyote are always covered
with fleas. Now Rabbit and Coyote were sitting
there scratching when Rabbit said, "Where are
you taking all these fleas?" So Coyote told him
of his plan to take the fleas to Rock House. Rabbit
agreed that it was a good prank and offered to
help. Together they carried the bags of fleas
up to the peak of Rock House. "How will we get
the fleas inside?" asked Rabbit. They sat and
thought about it.
While they were sitting there, Coyote noticed
Gopher digging a hole down the path. After a short
discussion they acceded to let Gopher in on the
trick. "It's a good trick" agreed Gopher "I can
dig a hole through the ground to rock house and
you can dump the fleas in!" So Gopher began to
dig very quietly so Father Sun and Mother Moon
would not be alarmed. When Gopher backed out of
the hole Coyote and Rabbit dumped the bags of
fleas down the opening. Then they plugged up the
hole and ran off laughing.
Inside the Rock House it was no laughing matter!
Mother Moon and Father Sun were soon covered with
fleas. Finally, Mother Moon could stand it no
longer, she flew up and out of Rock House followed
by Father Sun. Around and around the earth flew
trying to get rid of the fleas!
This is why the sun always follows the moon!
the Sun Follows the Moon - The Legend of the Rock
A Maidu Indian Tale retold by Cat