Domingo of Weitchpec
"Buzzard's Medicine" (June 3, 1907)
Writing system: default | hyphens | linguistic
Display style: paragraph | sentence | look-up
Text identifier: I4
Speaker: Domingo of Weitchpec
Primary documentation: A. L. Kroeber
Project transcription: Andrew Garrett, with the assistance of Susanne
Edition: , unpublished; selection edited and published by A. L. Kroeber, "The
Languages of California North of San Francisco", University of California
Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology, volume 9 (1911), pp.
Translation: A. L. Kroeber, Yurok Myths (1976), pp. 313-314 (myth
Manuscript source: A. L. Kroeber, Yurok field notebook 75, pp. 19-31; click here to view PDF
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Wishtu' so'n 'ekw. Kitkwo lego 'oolekwohl Lrgr'l.
This is exactly how it was. Buzzard was still a person.
Wishtu' ho so'n: numichyu, numichyu nep'.
This is what he did: he ate everything, everything.
Pulekuk 'w-rpkry ko ni mehl hopkecho'l. Tu' wishtu' me'womecho'l.
He began downriver from where the river starts. That's where he came
Tu' 'o numichyu hek'ws: leyolekws, hlmeyep'i'r, hlkrrwrs, hlkrrwrs,
He found everything: gartersnakes, rattlesnakes, salamanders, salamanders,
Toomenik k'i nu segonowoni tu' nep'.
He ate all the kinds of things that existed.
Nikichyu sook tu' nep', 'emsi k'i huuk hlkeyur.
He ate every kind of thing, even the slimy babies.
Tu' kolo ne'w wohpu 'i ni loolik k'i wr'rgryrwrni wenchokws
He could see them thrown in the water by pregnant young women.
'Imi skewoksi'm ki kolish 'u-komchumek' ku 'u-meyoomoyk'. Wit wohpuks 'o
loot' ni ku '-uuks kich ko'l so'n.
She did not want anyone to know she was pregnant. So she threw her child who
died in the water.
Pishtu' wishtu' 'o nep' kem. Numichyu nep'.
Then he ate it too. He ate everything.
Tu' noo laa'y, wek tu' noo laa'y so pech.
He kept going along, he kept going upriver.
Tu' noo laa'y, tu' pechkus 'o ho neskwechok'w ni sonini.
He kept going along, he arrived upriver doing so.
K'i mr'wrmry tu' ni sonini wishtu' so'n numichyu nep'.
Doing so where the river comes from he ate everything.
K'i chegi new 'we-segonowoni, k'i chegi new 'we-sook, k'i kwen cho' ni
newo'mish, tu' ni nep'.
Everything he saw of all descriptions, every kind of thing he saw, whatever
he saw, he ate it.
Pish, kwesi 'o loksi'hl, kwesi 'ishkuu 'i wishtu' so'n, kich tu' wishtu' ho
soo gego'l. 'Ishkuu ni slo'ehlko'.
Well, then it was a year, and slowly it was like this, since he had gone
around like that. Slowly he wasted away.
'Ishkuu ni slo'ehlkok'w k'i won 'we-loksihlek'.
Slowly he wasted away until a year was up.
Te nu hloyko'm wooneyik. K'i 'u-'wrhlkr' kich muuwolo' soninep'.
He tried to go uphill. His bones started to feel all burnt.
Kolo kich ni mok'w ho 'ekek'olehlkok'w. Ni sonin kich che'li'. Ni mok'w k'i
mehl sku'y soninep'.
It was as if he no longer had strong legs. He got dry. There was nothing
that made him feel better.
Te nu chyu sonini ye's k'i sku'y soninah, kem tu' nimi hlo'm k'i 'we-sku'y
He tried to do everything he thought of to make himself feel better, but he
didn't take what would make him feel better.
Pish, kwesi wishtu' 'o so'n kohchi, kich numi mok'ws 'we-neskwey.
Well, when he was like this once, he became very sick.
Kwesi wishtu 'o ho neskwechok'w Ho'owen. Ho'owens ho neskwechok'w. Prwr'k'uk
kit wo sooto' moki.
That is how he came to Ho'owen. He came to Ho'owen. He was going south
Pishtu' wit kich 'o numi mok'w 'we-neskweyowok', 'o numi mok'w
Then he became very sick, he was very sick.
Pish kwesi 'ishkuu ko'mo'y kolo ko'l 'o chwinkep'. Kesomehl negii'n so
Then he suddenly heard what seemed to be someone speaking to him. He looked
back on his left side.
'O negii'no'w so hinoo. 'Oko, ti'ni' 'we-chwinkepek'? 'O
ne'w kaap'olihl yo' 'o pegahchew.
He looked back. Hey, who spoke to me? He saw a plant there
To' wi' 'o tek ku kaap' 'o pegah. 'O chwinkep' ku kaap', kwesi 'o le'm,
The plant was growing there and moving around. The plant was talking, and it
To' kwel kome neskweyowo'm, kiti ko'l sonowo'm. Komchume'm hes kiti
ko'l mehl sonowo'm?
You are very sick, you are about to die. Don't you know that you are
about to die?
'O le'm, Paa! Kwelekw nimi komchumek'.
He said, No! I don't know it.
'O le'm, Kwelekw nek ki nepaane'm, ko 'o lewoloche'm. Kwelekw wit
kich mehl sonowo'm.
It said, You will eat me and you will get well. This is why you have
become like this.
K'i numichyu sook k'e-negepek', k'i 'oohl ko'l wi' sonowoo'm tu'
You eat every kind of thing, you even eat people who are
K'i chegi nu 'wo-sook hlmeyep'i'r tu' nepe'm. Tu' wit kich
You eat every kind of thing, even rattlesnakes. That is what you have
become sick from.
Tu' neki' ki nah.
[He said,] I will.
'O le'm, Nek ki nepaane'm. Hehl, cho' sku'y sonini wik 'i
It said, You will eat me. So, prepare (me) well there.
Keyomohl cho' ket'ohpine'm. Cho' s'eme'm, tu' wit ko 'o so
Cook (me) in a basket dipper. Pound me up, then you will talk to
Kwelekw wit ki mehl hewoloche'm, mo wi'iit tu' mehl slo'ehlkoo'm,
kich mehl mok'w k'e-tewon. Wek hehl nii'nes k'e-'wes!
You will get well from that, for you are thin, you no longer have
flesh. Look at yourself!
'O nii'no'w 'u-'wes. Nish! Tu' kome neskweyowok'.
He looked at himself. Alas! He was sick.
K'i ni 'rgrkrhl chpi wi' ko ni 'rgrkrhl, 'u-'wrhlkr' chpi kome ro'oh ho
Only his joints, his joints [?], on his bones alone he stood on the
So'n 'ekw, kich nimok'w 'we-tewon, 'ohlkumi wishtu' kich 'u
That is just how he was, he now had no flesh, because he had become sick
Pish, 'o le'm, Witu' ki sonowok'.
Well, it said, I will do so.
Witu' ki mehl wiigenoyek' 'o 'wes'onew, kyekwen ki soo hogoole'moni
k'i 'oohl; kwelekw woyn kiti yoole'm k'i 'oohl.
For that I will always be called in the world, as long as people will
live thus; for there will be another people.
Wit ki niigemu'. Wishtu' ki negep' 'o'loolekwish'ol k'i
People will always carry it. Human beings will always eat us.
'O le's, Chuu', to' wi' ki sonowok'. Kwesi 'o nep' kyew 'o
pyewolu' 'emsi rekwoh.
He thought, OK, I will do so. Then he ate and chewed there
and also drank.
Pishtu' wi'iitu wishtu mehl me so'n. 'O le'm: Kwelekw nek wit ni
That is what he did with it. He said: Well, that is how I am.
To' 'u-markweni nep' 'o'loolekwish'ol, ki to' 'u-markweni
A human being eats everything, he will eat everything.
Tu' wishtu' ko 'o nep', wishtu' ko 'o lohku'.
He will eat, and then they will make it.
Pishtu' wit ki sonowoo'm 'o'loolekwish'ol. Wishtu' ko 'o sonini
wishtu' sonowohl 'o'loolekwish.
Human beings will do so. Human beings will act like this.
Nekah ki sonowoo'm. Wit 'wes'onah 'o knegon.
We will do so. I am leaving it like that in the world.
'Wes'onah wishtu' ko 'o mehl hegok' kolo 'o'loolekwish'ol.
People will be in the world as if I were around.
Wishtu' ki segonoksi': Wishtu' ki yegohku' mocho kich slo'ehlko'
This is what he thought: This is how they will make it if a person
Wish ki nep', wishtu' ku 'o lohku'm 'u-meskwoh, mo witu' nek soo
He will eat this, and he will make his medicine, because that is how
I got better.
Pishtu witu' chpin so'n.
Well, that's just how it was.