Wednesday, December 12, 2018

C068. Brer Rabbit's Love-Charm

34. Brother Rabbit's Love-Charm. Text Source: Nights with Uncle Remus by Joel Chandler Harris. Online at Project Gutenberg. This is one of Daddy Jack's stories, told in Gullah. I have removed the frame material and standardized the spelling; click here for the original spelling plus all notes to the story.


One time, Brer Rabbit is been love one young lady. He is been love very nice young lady. He love him hard, he love him long, and he is gonna try for make them young lady marry with him. Young lady seem like he no look upon Brer Rabbit, and this is been make Brer Rabbit feel very bad all the day long. He move 'way off by heself; he lose he fat, and he hair is been come out. By and by, he see one old Africky mans what is been hunt in the field for root and herb for make he medicine truck. He see him, and he go to him. Africky mans open he eye big; he astonished. He say, "Ki, Brer Rabbit! Your health is been gone; he been gone and left you. What make you is look so puny like this? Who is been hurt your feeling?"

Brer Rabbit laugh with dry grins. He say, "Shoo! I been got well. If you is see me when I sick for true, it will make you hair stand up, I scare you so."

Africky mans, he make Brer Rabbit stick out he tongue; he is count Brer Rabbit pulse. He shake he head; he do say, "Hi, Brer Rabbit! What all this? You is been catch the gal-fever, and he strike in upon your gizzard."

Then Brer Rabbit, he is tell the Africky mans about them young lady what no look to him, and the Africky mans, he do say he been know gal same like that, he is been shun before. He say he can fix all them young lady like that. Brer Rabbit, he is feel so good, he jump up high; he is been crack he heel; he shake the Africky mans by the hand.

Africky mans, he say Brer Rabbit no can get the gal 'cept he is make him one charm-bag. He say he must get one elephant tusk, and he must get one gator tooth, and he must get one rice-bird bill. Brer Rabbit very glad about this, and he hop way from there-there.

He hop, he run, he jump all next day night, and by and by he see one great big elephant come breaking he way through the woods. Brer Rabbit, he say, "Ki! You big for true! I been hear talk about this in me own country. You big for true; too big for be strong."

Elephant say, "See this!"

He take pine tree in he snout; he pull him by the roots; he toss him way off. 

Brer Rabbit say, "Hi! them tree come 'cause you been high; he no come 'cause you been strong."

Elephant say, "See this!"

He rush through the woods; he fair tear him down. 

Brer Rabbit say, "Hoo! Them is been sapling what you destroy. See the big pine? You no can destroy them."

Elephant say, "See this!"

He run upon the big pine; the big pine is been too tough. elephant tusk stick in there for true; the big pine hold him fast. Brer Rabbit get them tooth; he fetch him where the Africky mans live. Africky mans say elephant is been too big for be smart. He say he must have one gator tooth for go with elephant tusk.

Brer Rabbit, he do crack he heel; he do fair fly from there-there. He go 'long, he go 'long. By and by he come upon gator. The sun shine hot; the gator do enjoy heself. Brer Rabbit say, "This road, he very bad; let's we make good one by the creekside."

Gator like that. He wake heself up from he head to he tail. They start for clean the road. Gator, he do tear the bush with he tooth; he sweep the trash way with he tail. Brer Rabbit, he do beat the bush down with he cane. He hit left, he hit right; he hit up, he hit down; he hit all 'round. He hit and he hit, till by and by he hit gator in he mouth and knock the tooth out. He grab him up; he gone from there-there. 

He fetch the gator tooth where the Africky mans live. Africky mans say, "Gator is been got sharp tooth for true. Go fetch me one rice-bird bill."

Brer Rabbit gone! He go 'long, he go 'long, till he see rice-bird swinging on bush. He ask him can he fly.

Rice-bird say, "See this!"

He whistle, he sing, he shake he wing; he fly all 'round and 'round.

Brer Rabbit say rice-bird can fly where the wind is been blow, but he no can fly where no wind blow.

Rice-bird say, "Ain't I!"

He wait for wing stop blowing; he wait, and he fly all 'round and 'round.

Brer Rabbit say rice-bird ain't can fly in house where there no wind.

Rice-bird say, "Ain't I!"

He fly in house, he fly all 'round and 'round. Brer Rabbit pull the door shut; he look at them rice-bird; he say, "Ain't you!"

He catch them rice-bird; he do get him bill, he fetch him where the Africky mans live. Africky mans says them rice-bird bill slick for true. He take the elephant tusk, he take the gator tooth, he take the rice-bird bill, he put him in little bag; he swing them bag upon Brer Rabbit neck. Then Brer Rabbit can marry them young gal. Ain't he!

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