The Forked Roads
The spirit walked along the Milky Way. At last he came to a point where the trail forked. There sat an old man. He was dressed in a buffalo robe, with the hair on the outside. He pointed to each ghost the road he was to take. One was short and led to the land of good ghosts. The other was very long; along it the ghosts went wailing.
The spirits of suicides cannot travel either road. They must hover over their graves. For them there is no future life.
A murderer is never happy after he dies. Ghosts surround him and keep up a constant whistling. He is always hungry, though he eat much food. He is never allowed to go where he pleases, lest high winds arise and sweep down upon the others.
When these ghosts visit the sick, they are driven away by smoke from the sacred cedar, or else cedar is laid outside the lodge. When a person hears a ghost whistling he goes outside the lodge and makes a loud noise. If a ghost calls to a loved one and he answers, then he is sure to die soon.
If a ghost meets a man who is alone, he will catch hold of him and pull his mouth and eyes until they are crooked. Indeed, a ghost did this to a person who only dreamed about one.
A Ghost Story
“Keep quiet. Push the ashes over that fire. Seize your bow in silence!” said their leader. All took their bows. And they departed to surround him. They made the circle smaller and smaller, and commenced at once to come together. And still he stood singing; he did not stir at all.
At length they went very near to the tree. And when they drew very near to it, the singer ceased his song. When they had reached the tree, bones lay there in a pile. Human bones were piled there at the foot of the tree.
Next: Two Teton Ghost Stories