Wednesday, December 12, 2018

C074. Cutta Cord-la

40. Cutta Cord-la. Text Source: Nights with Uncle Remus by Joel Chandler Harris. Online at Project Gutenberg. I have removed the frame material and standardized the spelling; click here for the original spelling plus all notes to the story. This is one of the stories that Daddy Jack tells in Gullah.


One time them vittles been get very scarce. The rice crop make nothing; the fish swim low; the bird fly high. Hard times been come there-there. He so hard, them critters do get hungry for true. Brer Rabbit and Brer Wolf they come put both he head together; they is make talk how hungry they is 'way down in the belly.

By and by, Brer Rabbit, he shut he eye, he say they must kill they grandmammy. Brer Wolf say he make he eye come watery for hear the talk like that. Brer Rabbit say, "Ki, Brer Wolf! The water come in your eye when you is been hungry. Me eye done been come watery so long time before I been talk with you 'bout we grandmammy."

Brer Wolf, he keep on crying; he wipe he eye upon he coat-sleave. 

Brer Rabbit, he been say, "If you is been take it so hard like this, Brer Wolf, he very good for kill your grandmammy first, so you is can come glad again."

Brer Wolf, he go dry he eye and kill he grandmammy, and they is been take him grandmammy off and sell him for vittles. When they is been eat this vittles day and night till he all done gone. When time come for Brer Rabbit for kill he grandmammy, Brer Wolf, he go visiting him. He say, "Brer Rabbit, I is been feel hungry through and through. Let's we kill your grandmammy."

Brer Rabbit lift up he head high; he laugh. He shake one ear, he shut one eye. He say, "Eh-eh, Brer Wolf, you think I gonna kill me grandmammy? Oh, no, Brer Wolf! Me no can do that."

This make Brer Wolf worse mad than he is been before. He fair tear the earth with he claw; he yowl seem like Indian mans. He say he going make Brer Rabbit kill he grandmammy nohow.

Brer Rabbit say he going see him 'bout this. He take he grandmammy by the hand; he lead him way off in the woods; he hide him in the top one big cocoanut tree: he tell him for stay there.

He hide he grandmammy in top cocoanut tree, and he give him little basket with cord tie on him. In the day-morning, Brer Rabbit, he is been go at the foot the tree. He make he voice fine; he holler, "Granny!—Granny!—O Granny! Jutta cord-la!"

When he granny hear this, he let basket down with the cord, and Brer Rabbit he fill him with vittles and something to eat. Every day they is been do this thing; every day Brer Rabbit is come for feed he granny. 

Brer Wolf he watch, he listen; he sneak up, he creep up, he do listen. By and by, he do hear Brer Rabbit call; he see the basket swing down, he see him go back. When Brer Rabbit been go 'way from there-there, Brer Wolf, he come by the root the tree. He holler; he do say, "Granny!—Granny!—O Granny! Shoot cord-la!"

The old Granny Rabbit listen; he been listen well. He say, "Ki! How come this? Me son is no talk like this. He no shoot the cord like that."

When Brer Rabbit come back the granny is been tell him 'bout something come holler shoot the cord-la, and Brer Rabbit, he laugh till he is can laugh no more. Brer Wolf, he hiding close; he heard Brer Rabbit cracking he joke; he is get very mad.

When Brer Rabbit is gone 'way, Brer Wolf been come back. He stand by the tree root; he holler, "Granny!—Granny!—O Granny! Jutta cord-la!"

Granny Rabbit hold he head upon one side; he listen good. He say, "I very sorry, me son, you been have so bad cold. Your voice been sound rough, me son."

Then Granny Rabbit is been peep down; he been say, "Hi! Brer Wolf! Go 'way from there-there. You no is been fool me like this. Go 'way, Brer Wolf!"

Brer Wolf, he come very mad; he grin till he tooth been shine. He go in the swamp; he scratch he head; he think. By and by, he go visiting one Blacksmith, and he ask him how can he do for make he voice come fine like Brer Rabbit voice. The Blacksmith, he say, "Come, Brer Wolf; I run this red-hot poker in your throat; he make you talk easy."

Brer Wolf say, 'Well, I like you for make me voice fine."

Then the Blacksmith run the red-hot poker in Brer Wolf throat, and he hurt him so bad, it is been long time before Brer Wolf can take the long walk by the cocoanut tree. By and by he get so he can come by, and when he get there-there, he holler, "Granny!—Granny!—O Granny! Jutta cord-la!"

The voice sound so nice and fine that Granny Rabbit is been think he Brer Rabbit voice, and he is been let the basket down. Brer Wolf, he shake the cord like he is put some vittles in the basket, and then he is been get in heself. Brer Wolf, he keep still. The Granny Rabbit pull on the cord; he do say, "Ki! He come heavy; he heavy for true. Me son, he love he Granny heap."

Brer Wolf, he do grin; he grin, and he keep still. The Granny Rabbit pull; he do pull hard. He pull till he is get Brer Wolf most by the top, and then he stop for rest. Brer Wolf look down, he head swim; he look up, he mouth water; he look down again, he see Brer Rabbit. He get scared, he jerk on the rope. Brer Rabbit, he do holler, "Granny!—Granny!—O Granny! Cutta cord-la!"

The Granny Rabbit cut the cord, and Brer Wolf is fall down and broke he neck.

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