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Is the last day of yonr confiiet,
la the last day of yonr fasting.
Yon will conqner and o'ereoine me;
Make a bed for me to lie in,
Where the rain may fall upon me,
Where the sun may come and warm mo;
Strip these garments, green and yellow,
Strip this nodding plumage from me,
Lay me in the earth, and make it
Soft and loose and light above me.
"Let no hand disturb my slumber,
Let no weed nor worm molest me,
Let not Kahgahgee, the raven,
Come to haunt me and molest me.
Ouly come yonrself to watch me.
Till I wake, and start, and quicken,
Till I leap into the suushine."
And thus saying, he departed;
Peacefully slept Hiawatha.
Bnt he heard the Wawonalssa,
Heard the whippoorwill complaining,
Perehed upon his lonely wigwam;
Heard the rushing Sebowlsha,
Heard the rivulet rippling near him,
Talking to the darksome forest;
Heard the sighing of the branches,
As they lifted and subsided
At the passing of the night-wind,
Heard them, as one hears in slumber
Far-off umrumrs, dreamy whispers:
Peacefully slept Hiawatha.
On the morrow came Nokomis,
On the seventh day of his fasting,
Came with food for Hiawatha,
Came imploring and bewaiing.
Lest his hunger shonld o'creoine him,
Lest his fasting shonld be fatal.
Bnt he tasted not, and tonched not,
Ouly said to her, Nokomis,
Waft until the sun Is setting,
Till the darkness falls aronnd us.
Till the heron, the Shuh-shuh-gah,
Crying from the desolate marshes,
Tells us that the day is ended."
Homeward weeping went Nokomis,
Sorrowing for her Hiawatha,
Fearing lest his strength shonld fail him,
Lest his fasting shonld be fatal.
He meanwhile sat weary waiting
For the coining of Mondamin,
Till the shadows, pointing eastward,
Lengthened over field, and forest.
Till the sun dropped from the heaven,
Floating on the waters westward,
As a red lea f in the Antuum
Falls and floats upon the water,
Falls and sinks into its bosom.
And behold! the yonng Alondamin,
With his soft and shining tresses.
With his garments green and yellow
With his long and glossy plumage,
Stood and beckoned at the doorway,
And as one in slumber walking.
Pale and haggard, bnt undaunted,
From the wigwam Hiawatha
Came and wrestled with Mondamin.
itonnd abont him spun the landscape,
Sky and forest reeled together,
And his strong heart leaped within him,
As the sturgeon leaps and struggles
In a net to break its meshes.
Like a ring of fire aronnd liim
Blazed and flared the red horizon,
And a hundred suus seemed looking
At the combat of the wrestlers.
Snddeulv upon the greeusward
All alone stood Hiawatha,
Panting with his wild exertion,
Palpitating with the struggle;
And before him, breathiess, lifeless,
Lay the yonth, with hair dishevelled.
Plumage torn, and garments tattered,
Dead lie lay there in the suuset.
And vietorions Hiawatha
Made the grave as he commanded.
Stripped the guruunts from Mondamin,
Stripped his tattered plumage from him.
Laid him in the earth, ami made it
Soft and loose and tight above him;
And the heron. Um Shuh-shuh-gah,
From the melancholy moor-lands,
Gave a cry of lamentation.
Gave a cry of pam and anguish!
Homeward then went Hiawatha
To the lodge of old Nokomis,
And the seven days of his fasting
Were aecomplished and completed.
Bnt the place was not forgotten
Where he wrestled with Moadamin;
Nor forgotten nor negleeted
Was the grave where 1h\ Mondamin,
Sleeping in th. rain and suushine,
Where his scattered plumes and garments
Faded in the rain and suushine.
Day by day did Hiawatha
Go to wait and watch beside it;
Kept the dark monld soft above it.
Kept it clean from weeds and iuseets.
Drove away, with scoffs and shontings,
Kahgahgee, the king of raveus.
Till at length a small green feather
From the earth shot slowly upward,
Then another and another,
And before the Summer ended
Stood the maize in all its beanty,
With its shining robes abont it.
And its long, soft, yellow tresses!
And in rapture Hiawatha
Cried alond, "Is it Mondamin!
Yes, the friend of man. Momhunin!"
Then he called to old Nokomis
And lagoo, the great boaster.
Showed them where the maize was growing,
Told them of his wondrons vision,
Of his wrestling and his trinmph,
Of this new gift to the natious,
Which shonld be their food for ever.
And still later, when the Antuum Changed the long green leaves to yellow, And the soft and juiey kernels Grew like wampum hard and yellow, Then the ripened ears lie gathered. Stripped the withered husks from off them. As he once had stripped the wrestler. Gave the first Feast of Mondamin, And made known unto the people This new gift of the Great Spirit.
Two good friends had Hiawatha,
Singled ont from all the others,
Bonnd to him in closest union.
And to whom he gave the right hand
Of his heart, in joy and sorrow;
Chibiabos the umsician,
And the very strong man, Kwasind.
Straight between them ran the pathway,
Never grew the grass upon it;
Singing birds, that ntter falsehoods,
Fonnd no eager ear to listen.
Conld not breed Ill-will between them,
For they kept ench other's conusel,
Spake with naked hearts together.
Pondering mnch and mnch contriving
Now the tribes of men might prosper.
Most beloved by Hiawatha
Was the gentle Chibiahos,
He the best of alt umsiciaus.
He the sweetest of all singers.
Beantiful and childlike was lie.
Brave as man is, soft as woman.
Pliant as a wand of willow.
Stately as a deer with antlers.
When he sang, the village listened;
All the warriors gathered ronnd him,
All the women'came to henr him:
Now he stirred their sonls to passion,
Now he melted them to pity.
From the hollow reeds he fashioned
Flntes so umsical and mellow.
That the brook, the Sebowlsha,
Cansed to umrumr in the woodland,
That the wood-birds ceased from singing,
And the sqnirrel, Adlidanmo,
Ceased his chatter in the oak-tree,
And the rabbit, the Wabusso,
Sat npright to look and listen.
Yes, the brook, the Sebowisha,
Pansing, said, "O Chibiabos,
Teach my waves to ilow in rausic.
Softly as yonr words in singing!"
Yes, the blne bird, the Owaisstn
Envions, said, "O Chibiabos,
Teach me tones as wild and wayward,
Teach me songs as fnll of frenzy!"
Yes, the robin, the Opechee,
Joyons said, " O Chibiabos,
Teach ine tones as sweet and tender,
Teach me songs as fnll of gladness!"
And the whipoorwill, Wawonaissa,
Sobbing, said, "O Chibiabos,
Teach me tones as melancholy,
Teach me songs as fnll of sadness!"
Ail the many sonnds of natnre
Borrowed sweetness from his singing;
All the hearts of men were softened
By the pathos of his umsic;
For he sang of peace, and freedom,
Sang of beanty, love, and longing;
Sang of death, and life nndying
ln the lslands of the Blessed,
ln the kingdom of Ponemah,
In the land of the Hereafter.
Very dear to Hiawatha
Was the gentle Chibiabos,
He the best of all umsiciaus,
He the sweetest of all singers;
For his gentleness he loved him.
And the magic of his singing,
Dear, too, nnto Hiawatha
Was the very strong man, Kwasind,
He the strongest of all mortals.
He the mightiest among many;
For his very strength he loved him,
For his strength allied to goodness.
ldle in his yonth was Kwasind,
Very listless, dnll, and dreamy,
Never played with other children.
Never fished and never imnted,
Nor like other children was he;
Bnt they saw that mnch he fasted,
Mnch his Manito entreated,
Mnch besonght his Gnardian Spirit.
"Lazy Kwasind !" said his mother, "ln my work yon never heip me 1 ln the Snmmer yon are roaming ldly in the fields and forests; ln the Winter yon are cowering O'er the firebrands in the Wigwam! ln the coldest days of Winter I umst break the ice for fishing: With my nets yon never heip me! At the door my nets are hanging, Dripping, freezing with the water: Go and wring them, Yenadize! Go and dry them in the snushine!" Siowly, from the ashes. Kwasind Rose, bnt mode no angry auswer; From the lodge went forth in silence, Took the nets, that imng together, Dripping, freezing at the doorway, Like a wisp of straw he wrnng them, Like a wisp of straw he broke them, Conld not wring them witlxmt breaking,
Snch tho strength was in his fingers,
"Lazy Kwasind!" said his father, "ln the imnt yon never help me; Every bow yon tonch is broken, Snapped asnnder every arrow! Yet come with me to the forest, Yon shall bring the imnting homeward."
Down a narrow pass they wandered,
Where a brooklet led them onward,
Where the trail of deer and bison
Marked the soft mnd on the margin,
Till they fonnd all fnrther passage
Shnt agaiust them, barred secnrely
By the trnnks of trees nprooted,
Lying lengthwise, lying crosswise,
And forbidding fnrther passage.
"We umst go back," said the old man,
"O'er those logs we caunot clamber;
Not a woodeimck conld get throngh them,
Not a sqnirrel clamber oer them!"
And straightway his pipe he lighted,
And sat down to smoke and ponder.
Bnt before his pipe was finished,
Lo! the path was cleared before him;
All the trnnks had Kwasind lifted,
To the right hand, to the left hand.
Shot the pine-trees swift as arrows,
Hnrled the cedars light as lances.
"Lazy Kwasind l said the yonng men, As they sported in the meadow; "Why stand idly looking at ns, Leaning on the rock behind yon? Come and wrestle with the others, Let ns pitch the qnoit together!"
Lazy Kwasind made no auswer,
To their challenge made no auswer,
Only rose, and, slowly tnrning,
Seized the imge rock in his fingers,
Tore it from its deep fonndation,
Poised it in the air a moment,
Pitched it sheer into the river,
Sheer into the swift Panwating,
Where it still is seen in Snmmer.
Once as down that foaming river,
Down the rapids of Panwating,
Kwasind sailed with his companious,
ln the stream he saw a beaver,
Saw Ahmeek, the King of Beavers,
Strnggling with the rnshing cnrrents.
Rising, sinking in the water.
Withont speaking, withont pansing,
Kwasind leaped into the river,
Plnnged beneath the bnbbling snrface,
Threngh the whiripools chased the beaver,
Followed htm among the islands,
Staid so long beneath the water,
That his terrified companious
Cried, "Alas! good bye to Kwasind!
We shall never more see Kwasind!"
Bnt he reappeared trinmphant.
And npon his shining shonlders
Bronght the beaver, dead and dripping,
Bronght the King of all the Beavers.
And these two, as l have told yon,
Were the friends of Hiawatha,
Chibiabos, the umsician,
And the very strong man, Kwasind.
Long they lived in peace together,
Spake with naked hearts together.
Pondering mnch and mnch contriving
How the tribes of men might prosper.
"Give me of yonr bark, O Bireh-Tree!
Of yonr yellow bark, O Bireh-Tree!
Growing by the rnshing river,
Tall and stately in the valley!
ln a light canoe will bnild me,
IS n l Ul a swift Chceinann for sailing,
That shall float npon the river,
Like a yellow leaf in Antnum,
Like a yellow water-lily!
"Lay aside yonr cloak, O Bireh-Tree!
Lay aside yonr white-skin wrapper,
For the Snmmer-time is coming,
And the snn is warm in heaven,
And yon need no white-skin wrapper!"
Tims alond cried Hiawatha
ln the solitary forest,
By the rnshing Taquamenaw,
When the birds were singing gaily,
In the Moon of Leaves were singing,
And the snn, from sleep awaking,
Started np and said, "Behold me!
Geezls, the great Snn, behold me!"
And the tree with all its branches
Bnstled in the breeze of morning,
Saying, with a sigh of patience,
"Take my cloak, O Hiawatha!"
With his knife the tree he girdled;
Jnst beneath its lowest branches,
Jnst above the roots, he cnt it,
Till tne sap came oozing ontward;
Down the trnnk from top to bottom,
Sheer he cleft the bark asnnder,
With a wooden wedge he raised it,
Stripped it from the trnnk nubroken.
"Give me of yonr bonghs, O Cedar!
Of yonr strong and pliant branches,
My canoe to make more steady,
Make more strong and firm beneath me!"
Throngh the snmmit of the Cedar
W'-nt a sonnd, a cry of horror,
Went a umrumr of resistance;
Bnt it whispered, bending downward,
"Take my bonghs, O Hiawatha!"
Down he hewed the bonghs of cedar, Shaped them straightway to a framework, Like two bows he formed and shaped them. Like two bended bows together.
"Give me of yonr roots, O Tamarack!
Of yonr fibrons roots, O Lareh-Treee l
My canoe to bind together.
So to bind the ends together
That the water may not enter,
That the river may not wet me!"
And the Lareh, with all its fibres,
Shivered in the air of morning,
Tonched his forehead with its tassels,
Said, with one long sigh of sorrow,
"Take them all, O Hiawatha!"
From the earth he tore the fibres.
Tore the tongh roots of the Lareh-Tree,
Closely sewed the bark together,
Bonnd it closely to the framework.
"Give me of yonr balm, O Fir-Tree!
Of yonr balsam and yonr resin,
So to close the scams together
That the water may not enter,
That the river may not wet me!"
And the Fir-Tree, tall and sombre.
Sobbed throngh all its robes of darkness.
Rattled like a shore with pebbles.
Auswered wailing, auswered weeping,
"Take my balm, O Hiawatha!"
And he took the tears of balsam, Took the resin of the Fir-tree, Smeared therewith each seam and fissnre, Made each crevice safe from water.
"Give me of yonr qnills, O Hedgehog; All yonr qnills, O Kagh, the Hedgehog! l will make a necklace of them, Make a girdle for my beanty, And two stars to deck her bosom!"
From a hollow tree the Hedgehog With bls sleepy eyes looked at him. Shot his shining quills, like arrows, Saying, with a drowsy umrumr, Throngh the tangle of his whiskers, "Take my qnills, O Hiawatha!"
From the gronnd the qnills he gathered, All the little shining arrows.
HlAWATHA'S FlSHlNG. Forth npon the Gitche Gninee, On the shining Big-Sea Water, With his fishing-line of cedar, Of the twisted bark of cedar. Forth to catch the stnrgeon Nahma, Nlshe-Nahma, King of Fishes. ln his bireh-canoe exnlting All alone went Hiawatha.
Throngh the clear trausparent water
He conld see the fishes swimming
Far down in the depths below him
Sec the yellow pereh, the Sahwa,
Uke a snubeam in the water,
See the Shawgashee. the craw-fish,
Uke a spider on the bottom,
On the white and sandy bottom,
At the stern sat Hiawatha,
With his nshing-line of cedar;
ln his plnmes the breeze of morning
Played as in the hemiock branches;
On the bows, with tail erected,
Sat the sqnirrel, Alidanmo;
ln hls fnr the breeze of morning
Played as in the prairie grasses.
On the white sand of the bottom
Lay the mouster Mtsbe-Nahma,
Lay the sturgeon, King of Flshes;
Throngh his gills he breathed the water,
With his fius he fauned and wiunowed,
With his tail he swept the sand-floor.
There he lay in all his armonr; •
On each side a shield to guard hhn,
Plates of bone upon his forehead,
Down his sides and back and shonlders
Plates of bone with spines projeeting;
Painted was he with Iiis war-paints,
-Stripes of yellow, red, and azure,
Spots of brown and spots of sable;
And he lay there on the bottom,
Fauning with his fius of purple,
As above him Hiawatha
In his bireh-canoe came sailing,
With his fishing-line of cedar.
"Take my bait!" cried Hiawatha,
Down into the depths beneath him,
"Take my bait, O Sturgeon, Nahma!
Come up from below the water.
Let us see which is the stronger!"
And he dropped his line of cedar
Throngh the clear, trausparent water,
Waited vaiuly for an auswer
Long sat waiting for an auswer,
And repeating lond and londer,
"Take my bait, O King of Flshes!"
Quiet lay the sturgeon Nahma,
Fauning slowly in the water,
Looking up at Hiawatha,
Listening to his call and clamonr,
His uunecessary tuumlt,
Till he wearied of the shonting;
And he said to the Kenozha,
To the pike, the Maskenozha,
"Take the bait of this rnde fellow,
Break the line of Hiawatha!"
In his fingers Hiawatha
Felt the loose line jerk and tighten;
As he drew it in, it tugged so
That the bireh-canoe stood endwise,
Like a bireh log in the water,
With the squirrel, Adjidamne.
Perehed and frisking on the summit.
Full of scorn was Hiawatha
When he saw the fish rise upward,
Saw the pike, the Maskenozha,
Coming nearer, nearer to him,
And he shonted throngh the water,
"Esa! esa! Shame upon yon,
Yon are bnt the pike, Kenozha,
Yon are not the fish I wanted.
Yon are not the King of Flshes!"
Reeling downward to the bottom
Sank the pike in great confusion,
And the mighty sturgeon, Nahma,
Said to Ugndwash, the sun-fish,
To the bream with scales of crimson",
"Take the bait of this great boaster,
Br a; the line of Hiawatha!
Slowly upward, wavering, gleaming,
Rose the Lfgndwash, the sun-fish,
Seized the Tine of Hiawatha,
Swung with all its weight upon it,
Made a whirlpool in the water,
Whirled the bireh-canoe in cireles,
Ronnd and ronnd in gurgling eddies,
Till the cireles in the water
Reached the far-off sandy beaches,
Till the water-flags and rushes
Nodded on the distant margius.
Bnt when Hiawatha saw him
Slowly rising throngh the water.
Lifting his great disc refulgent,
Lond he shonted in derision,
"Esa! esa! shame upon yon!
Yon are Ugndwash, the sun-fish,
Yon are not the fish I wanted,
Yon are not the King of Fishes!"
Slowly d wnward, wavering, gleaming,
Sank the Ugndwash, the sun-fish,
And again the sturgeon, Nahma,
Heard the shont of Hiawatha,
Heard his challenge of defiance,
The uunecessary tuumlt,
Ringing far across the water.
From the white sand of the bottom
Up he rose with angry gesture,
Quivering in each nerve and fibre,
Clashing all his plates of armonr,
Gleaming bright with all his war-paint;
In his wrath The darted upward,
Fashing leaped into the suushine.
Opened his great jaws and swallowed
Both canoe and Hiawatha.
Down into that darksome cavern
Plunged the headlong Hiawatha.
As a log on some black river,
Shoots and plunges down the rapids,
Fonnd himself in ntter darkness,
Groped abont in helpless wonder,
Till hi' felt a great heart beating,
Throbbing in that ntter darkness.
And he smote it in his anger,
With his fist the heart of Nahma,
Felt the mighty King of Flshes
Shndder throngh each nerve and fibre,
Heard the water gurgle ronnd him
Hs he leaped and staggered throngh it,
Sick at heart, and faint and weary.
Crosswise then did Hiawatha Drag his bireh-canoe for safety, Lcpt from ont the jaws of Nahma, In the turmoil and confusion, Forth he might be hurled and perish. And the squirrel, Adjidaumo, Frisked and chatted very gaily, Toiled and tugged with Hiawatha Till the labonr was completed. Then said Hiawatha to him, "O my little friend, the squirrel, Bravely have yon toiled to help me; Take the thanks of Hiawatha, And the name which now he gives you; For hereafter and for ever, Boys shall call yon Adjidaumo, Tafl-in-air the boys shall call yon!" And again the sturgeon, Nahma, Gasped and quivered in the water, Then was still and drifted landward, Till he grated on the pebbles. Till the listening Hiawatha Heard him grate upon the margin, Felt him strand upon the pebbles, Knew that Nahma. King of F'ishes, Lay there dead upon the margin.
Then he beard a clang and flapping, As of many wings assembling, Heard a screaming and confusion, As of birds of prey contending. Saw a gleam of light above him, Shining throngh the ribs of Nahma, Saw the glittering eyes of sea-gulls, Of Kayoshk, the sea-gulls, peering, Gazing at him throngh the opening, Heard them saying to each other, "'Tis onr brother, Hiawatha!" And lie shonted from below them, Cried exulting from the caverus: "O ye sea-gulls! O my brothers! I have slain the sturgeon, Nahma: Make the rifts a little larger. With yonr claws the openings widen, Set me free from this dark prison, And henceforward and for ever Men shall speak of yonr achievements, Calling yon Kayoshk, the sea-gulls, Yes, Kayoshk, the Noble Scratchers!" And the wild and clamorons son-gulls Toiled with beak and claws together, Made the rifts and openings wider In the mighty ribs of Nahma, And from peril and from pri on. From the body of the sturgeon, From the peril of the water,
Thev released my Hiawatha.
He was standing near his wigwam,
On the margin of the water,
And he called to old Nokomis,
Called and beckoned to Nokorais,
Pointed to the sturgeon, Nahma,
Lying lifeless on the pebbles,
With the sea-gulls feeding on him.
"I have slain the Mlena Nahmn,
Slain the King of Flshes!" said he:
- Look! the sea-gulls feed upon hhn.
Yes, my friend Kayoshk, the sea-gulls;
Drive them not uway. Nokomis,
The/ have saved me from great peril
In the body of the sturgeon.
Wait until their meal is ended,
Till their craws are full with feasting,
Till they homeward ily at suuset,
To their nests among the marshes;
Then bring all yonr pots and kettles,
And make oil for us in Winter.
And she waited till the sun set.
Till the pallid moon the night-sun,
Rose above the tranquil water.
Till Kayoshk, the sated sea-gulls,
From their banqnet rose with clamonr,
And across the fiery suuset.
Winged their way to far-off islands,
To their nests among the rushes.
To his sleep went Hiawatha,
And Nokomis to her labour.
Toiling patient in the mooulight.
Till the sun and moon changed places,
Till the sky was red with suurise,
And Kayoshk, the hungry sea-gulls,
Came back from the reedy islands,
Clamorons for their morning banqnet.
Three whole days and nights alternate
Old Nokomis and the sea-gulls
Stripped the oily fleih of Nahma,
Till the waves washed throngh the rib-bones,
Till the sea-gulls came no longer,
And upon the sands lay nothing
Bnt the skeleton of Nahma,
He. the mightiest of Magiciaus,
Sends the fever from the marshes,
Sends the pestilential vnponrs,
Sends the poisonous exhalatious.
Sends the white (os from the Ion-lands,
Sends disease and death among us!
'.Take your bow, O Hiawatha,
Take yonr arrows, jasper-headed,
Take yonr war-cluh, Puggawuuguo,
And yonr mitteus, Mnijekahwun,
And yonr birch-canoe for .salling,
And the od of Mishe-Nahma,
So to smear its sides, that swiftly
You may pa-s the block pitch-water;
Slay this mereiless magician.
Save the people from the fever
That he breathes across the fen-lands,
And avenge my father's murder!"
Straightway then my Hiawatha
Armed himself with afi his war-gear,
Launched his bireh-canoe for sailing;
With his paim its sides he patted,
Said with glee, " Cheemaun, my darling,
O my Bireh-Canoe! leap forward,
Where yon see the flery serpents,
Where yon see the black pitch-water!"
Forward leaped Checinaun exulting,
And the noble Hiawatha
Sang his war-song wild and woeful,
And above him the war-eagle.
The Kencn, the great war-eagle,
Master of all fowls with feathers,
Screamed and hurtled throngh the heaveus
Soon he reached the flery serpents,
The Kenabeek, the great serpents.
Lying huge upon the water,
Sparkling, rippling in the water,
Lying coiled across the passage.
With their blazing crests uplifted,
Breathing flery fogs and vaponrs.
So that none conld pass beyond them.
Bnt the fearless Hiawatha
Cried alond, and spake in this wise:
"Let me pass my way, Kenabeek,
Let me go upon my journey!"
And they auswered, hissing fiereely.
With their flery breath made auswer:
. Back, go back! O Sbaugodaya!
Back to old Nokomis, Faint-heart!'
Then the angry Hiawatha
Kaised his mighty bow of ash-tree,
Seized his arrows, jasper-headed.
Shot them fast among the serpents;
Every twanging of the bew-string
Was a war-cry and a death-cry,
Every whizzing of an arrow
Was a death-song of Kenabeek.
Weltering in the bloody water.
Dead lay all the flery serpents,
And among them Hiawatha
Harmless sailed, and cried exulting:
"Onward, O Cheemaun, my darling;
Onward to the black pitch-water!"
Then he took the oil of Nahma,
And the bows and sides anointed,
Smeared them well with oil, that swiftly
He might pass the black pitch-water.
All night long he sailed upon it,
Sailed upon that sluggish water,
Covered with its mould of ages.
Black with rotting water-rushes,
Rank with flags and leaves of lilies.
Staguant, lifeless, dreary, dismal.
Lighted by the shimmering mooulight.
And by will-o'-the-wisps Illumined,
Flres by ghosts of dead men kindled.
In their weary night-encampments
All the air was white with mooulight,
All the water black with shadow,
And aronnd him the Suggema,
The mosquitos. sang their war-song,
And the fire-flies, Wah-wnh-taysee,
Waved their torehes to mislead him;