The Story of the Bat

The birds challenged the four-footed animals to play them in a ball game. Each group agreed that all creatures that had teeth should play on the side of the animals, and all those that had feathers should play on the side of the birds.

They chose a suitable day, cleared a playing field, erected poles, and obtained balls from the medicine men.

When the players gathered, all that had teeth went on one side and those that had feathers went on the other. When the Bat came, he joined the animals that had teeth.

"No," the animals said to Bat. "You have wings. You must play with the birds."

Bat went over to the side of the birds, but they said: "No, you have teeth. You must play with the animals." They drove him away, saying: "You are so small, you could do us no good anyway.

And so Bat went back to the animals, begging them to let him play with them. At last they agreed: "You are too small to help us, but as you have teeth we will let you remain on our side."

The game began, and the birds quickly took the lead because they could catch the ball in the air where the four-footed animals could not reach it. The Crane was the best player, and he caught the ball so often that it looked as if the birds were going to win the game. As none of the animals could fly, they were in despair.

The little bat now entered the game, flying into the air and catching the ball while the Crane was flapping slowly along. Again and again Bat caught the ball, and he won the game for the four-footed animals.

They agreed that even though Bat was very small and had Wings he should always be classed with the animals having teeth.

Indigenous Peoples' Literature Return to Indigenous Peoples' Literature

Compiled by: Glenn Welker

Copyright @ 1993-2016

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