Tuesday, December 18, 2018

C136. The Face of the Moon

17: Why the Moon's Face Is Smutty. Text Source: Uncle Remus and His Friends by Joel Chandler Harris. Online at Hathi Trust. I have removed the frame material and standardized the spelling; click here for notes to the story.

In them days, way back yonder, the Moon use to come down and get behind a big poplar log, when she want to make a change. She ain't want nobody to see 'er. She'd rise later and later every night, just like she do now, and then towards the last she'd drop down on the far end of the land, over that away, and slip behind the poplar log and change all she want to.

But one time there was a man going along through the woods toting a bag of charcoal, what he been burning. He been watching the coal kiln since midnight the night before, and he was so tired out and broke down that instead of singing or whistling, like folks does when they go through the woods, he was just going about his business without making any fuss. He was asking hisself if there'd be any hot ashcake waiting for 'im, and whether the old woman'd save 'im any pot-liquor from dinner. 

He was going 'long this away, when the first news he know, he come right upon the Moon whiles she was changing. Man, sir! There was the biggest flutterment then and there that there's ever been before or since. Folks 'way off thought they could hear thunder, though there weren't nothing in the roun' world but the Moon trying for to get out the way of the man. 

The man, he dropped the bag of charcoal and run like old Scratch was after 'im. He just tored through the woods like a hurricane was blowing 'im along. He was going one way and the Moon another, but the Moon she tripped and fell right on top of the bag of charcoal, and you can see the signs of it down to this day. Look at 'er when you will, and you'll see that she look like she been hit 'cross the face with a soot-bag. Don't take my word for it. Just look for yourself! There it is! Ever since that day the Moon done got so she do her changing up in the elements.

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