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Women’s Words Part Flesh and Blood

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  1. Women’s Words Part Flesh and Blood
  2. The Three Rhymsters
  3. How Greed for a Trifling Thing Led a Man to Lose a Great One
  4. Who Was the Sinner?
  5. The Magic Cask
  6. The Favorite of Fortune and the Child of Ill Luck
  7. The Bird with Nine Heads
  8. The Cave of the Beasts
  9. The Panther
  10. The Great Flood
  11. The Fox and the Tiger
  12. The Tiger’s Decoy
  13. The Fox and the Raven
  14. Why Dog and Cat are Enemies
  15. How the Five Ancients Became Men
  16. The Herd Boy and the Weaving Maiden
  17. Yang Oerlang
  18. Notscha
  19. The Lady of the Moon
  20. The Morning and the Evening Star
  21. The Silkworm Goddess
  22. The Queen of Heaven
  23. The Fire God
  24. The Three Ruling Gods
  25. A Legend of Confucius
  26. The God of War
  27. The Halos of the Saints
  28. Laotsze
  29. The Ancient Man
  30. The Eight Immortals I
  31. The Eight Immortals II
  32. The Two Scholars
  33. The Miserly Farmer
  34. Sky O’Dawn
  35. King Mu of Dschou
  36. The King of Huai Nan
  37. Old Dschang
  38. The Kindly Magician
  39. The Flower-Elves
  40. The Spirit of the Wu-Lian Mountain
  41. The King of the Ants
  42. The Little Hunting Dog
  43. The Dragon After His Winter Sleep
  44. The Spirits of the Yellow River
  45. The Dragon Princess
  46. Help In Need
  47. The Disowned Princess
  48. Fox-Fire
  49. The Talking Silver Foxes
  50. The Constable
  51. The Dangerous Reward
  52. Retribution
  53. The Ghost Who Was Foiled
  54. The Punishment of Greed
  55. The Night on the Battlefield
  56. The Kingdom of the Ogres
  57. The Maiden Who Was Stolen Away
  58. The Flying Ogre
  59. Black Arts
  60. The Sorcerer of the White Lotus Lodge
  61. The Three Evils
  62. Three Heroes Came By Their Deaths
  63. How the River God’s Wedding Was Broken Off
  64. Dschang Liang
  65. Old Dragonbeard
  66. How Molo Stole the Lovely Rose-Red
  67. The Golden Canister
  68. Yang Gui Fe
  69. The Monk of the Yangtze-Kiang
  70. The Heartless Husband
  71. Giauna the Beautiful
  72. The Frog Princess
  73. Rose of Evening
  74. The Ape Sun Wu Kung

Once upon a time there were two brothers, who lived in the same house. And the big brother listened to his wife’s words, and because of them fell out with the little one. Summer had begun, and the time for sowing the high-growing millet had come. The little brother had no grain, and asked the big one to loan him some, and the big one ordered his wife to give it to him. But she took the grain, put it in a large pot and cooked it until it was done. Then she gave it to the little fellow. He knew nothing about it, and went and sowed his field with it. Yet, since the grain had been cooked, it did not sprout. Only a single grain of seed had not been cooked; so only a single sprout shot up. The little brother was hard-working and industrious by nature, and hence he watered and hoed the sprout all day long. And the sprout grew mightily, like a tree, and an ear of millet sprang up out of it like a canopy, large enough to shade half an acre of ground. In the fall the ear was ripe. Then the little brother took his ax and chopped it down. But no sooner had the ear fallen to the ground, than an enormous Roc came rushing down, took the ear in his beak and flew away. The little brother ran after him as far as the shore of the sea.

Then the bird turned and spoke to him like a human being, as follows: “You should not seek to harm me! What is this one ear worth to you? East of the sea is the isle of gold and silver. I will carry you across. There you may take whatever you want, and become very rich.”


The little brother was satisfied, and climbed on the bird’s back, and the latter told him to close his eyes. So he only heard the air whistling past his ears, as though he were driving through a strong wind, and beneath him the roar and surge of flood and waves. Suddenly the bird settled on a rock: “Here we are!” he said.

Then the little brother opened his eyes and looked about him: and on all sides he saw nothing but the radiance and shimmer of all sorts of white and yellow objects. He took about a dozen of the little things and hid them in his breast.

“Have you enough?” asked the Roc.

“Yes, I have enough,” he replied.

“That is well,” answered the bird. “Moderation protects one from harm.”

Then he once more took him up, and carried him back again.

When the little brother reached home, he bought himself a good piece of ground in the course of time, and became quite well to do.

But his brother was jealous of him, and said to him, harshly: “Where did you manage to steal the money?”

So the little one told him the whole truth of the matter. Then the big brother went home and took counsel with his wife.

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“Nothing easier,” said his wife. “I will just cook grain again and keep back one seedling so that it is not done. Then you shall sow it, and we will see what happens.”

No sooner said than done. And sure enough, a single sprout shot up, and sure enough, the sprout bore a single ear of millet, and when harvest time came around, the Roc again appeared and carried it off in his beak. The big brother was pleased, and ran after him, and the Roc said the same thing he had said before, and carried the big brother to the island. There the big brother saw the gold and silver heaped up everywhere. The largest pieces were like hills, the small ones were like bricks, and the real tiny ones were like grains of sand. They blinded his eyes. He only regretted that he knew of no way by which he could move mountains. So he bent down and picked up as many pieces as possible.

The Roc said: “Now you have enough. You will overtax your strength.”

“Have patience but a little while longer,” said the big brother. “Do not be in such a hurry! I must get a few more pieces!”

And thus time passed.

The Roc again urged him to make haste: “The sun will appear in a moment,” said he, “and the sun is so hot it burns human beings up.”

“Wait just a little while longer,” said the big brother. But that very moment a red disk broke through the clouds with tremendous power. The Roc flew into the sea, stretched out both his wings, and beat the water with them in order to escape the heat. But the big brother was shrivelled up by the sun.

Note: This fairy-tale is traditionally narrated. The Roc is called pong in Chinese, and the treasures on the island are spoken of as “all sorts of yellow and white objects” because the little fellow does not know that they are gold and silver.

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