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INDIAN GAMES AND DANCES
pastime a reflection both of the environment and of the vocations of the people who used it. The drama or theme of the play is the search for a particular reed, which for the purpose of the game is marked in a special way.
Properties. — A mat or blanket and about fifty reeds; the reeds should be similar in thickness and about a foot long.
Directions. — The number of points which shall con­stitute winning the game should first be agreed upon; if ten be the number, then twenty reeds should be set aside as counters and the rest used as game-reeds. All of these latter must be alike save one, and that reed must have a black band about an inch or so wide painted around the middle, that is, midway between the two ends of the reed. It is this particular reed that must be detected or its location guessed.
The mat or blanket should be laid east and west. The two players sit opposite each other, one near the northern edge of the mat, the other near the southern edge. The counters are divided in half, one-half put at the eastern end of the mat, the other half at the western. The counters at the east belong to the player sitting at the north, those at the west to the player at the south. Two singers stand back of each player. The spectators are grouped about the mat, but must not be too near the players. Lots are drawn to decide which player shall "hold the reeds." The player who loses the chance to "hold the reeds" becomes the one who is to be the guesser.
All the game-reeds, including the reed with the black
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III