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130               INDIAN GAMES AND DANCES
Harken! The Council gave consent;
Harken! And great Ti-ra'-wa, mightier than all!
Harken! To make their purpose known, Succor and aid freely to give, Heralds were called, called by the Winds. Then in the West uprose the Clouds Heavy and black, ladened with storm. Slowly they climbed, dark'ning the skies, While close on every side the Thunders marched On their dread way, till all were come To where the gods in stately council sat Waiting for them. Then bade them go Back to the earth, carrying aid To him whose prayer had reached their circle vast. This mandate given, the Thunders turned toward earth, Taking their course slantwise the sky.
Harken! Another followed hard
Lightning broke forth out of the cloud, Zigzag and dart, cleaving their way Slantwise to earth, their goal to reach.
Harken! For these two were not all
That hastened to proclaim the god's behest Swift on their wings Swallows in flocks Swept in advance, ranging the path, Black breasts and Red, Yellow and White, Flying about, clearing the way For those who bore the message of the gods Granting the man courage to dare, Strength to endure, power to stand Invincible, a bulwark 'gainst all foes.
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III