Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Jamaica: Spider Marries Monkey's Daughter

For another story about rivalry between Anansi and Lizard in getting a wife by guessing her name, see this story in the West African unit: Why the Lizard Moves His Head up and Down.

[Notes by LKG]

This story is part of the Jamaican Stories unit. Story source: Jamaica Anansi Stories by Martha Warren Beckwith (1924).


Spider Marries Monkey's Daughter

Bredder Monkey had a daughter whom Bredder Spider wanted to marry. Monkey didn't want Bredder Spider to marry his daughter as he thought Bredder Spider was too fast and beneath him; he only kept Bredder Spider company as he thought him useful to him.

So he jump to Bredder Green-lizard and said, "Bredder Green-lizard, what you think of such cheek? Fancy! Bredder Spider want to marry me daughter! I don't want to hurt his feelings as he is useful to us, so help me to get out of it."


So Bredder Green-Lizard say, "I tell you a way, man. Call her 'Miss Nennan-kennan-wid-a-turn-down-gown' and whoever guess her name marry her, for Bredder Spider never can guess that!"

So Bredder Lizard went direc' an' tell Bredder Spider, "When dey call you all up to ax Bredder Monkey daughter name, you fe say, 'Miss Nennen-kennen-wid-a-turn-down-gown'."

So Bredder Monkey send out word to all the gentlemen who want to marry his daughter to come and guess her name.

Not one could tell her name till when he catch to Bredder Spider, Bredder Spider say, "Miss Nennen-kennen-wid-a-turn-down-gown." So Bredder Spider got Bredder Monkey daughter an' marry her.

So when Bredder Spider wife had a baby, she left Bredder Spider put the pickney to bed while she go to pond. When Bredder Spider think wife gone, him start to sing,

Hush, me pickney, hush me baby,
A me cunnie mak me get yo' mama!

Spider wife turn back an' say, "A what a dat you sing?"

Spider say, 'Me only sing,

Hush, me pickney! hush, me baby!
It's a good t'ing marry yo' mama?'

Bredder Monkey been a come see him an' hear what Bredder Spider singing.

Bredder Monkey say, "Wa' so you get me daughter!" an' grab away the baby an' kill Spider. And as him kill Spider, the pickney drop out his hand dead.

So never kill a Spider, as whatever you have in hand will be sure to break.


(300 words)






No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments for Google accounts; you can also contact me at laura-gibbs@ou.edu.