THE PET RABBIT
A little girl owned a pet rabbit which she loved dearly. She
carried it on her back like a babe, made for it a little pair of
moccasins, and at night shared with it her own robe.
Now the little girl had a cousin who loved her very dearly and
wished to do her honor; so her cousin said to herself:
"I love my little cousin well and will ask her to let me carry her
pet rabbit around;" (for thus do Indian women when they wish to
honor a friend; they ask permission to carry about the friend's
She then went to the little girl and said:
"Cousin, let me carry your pet rabbit about on my back. Thus shall
I show you how I love you."
Her mother, too, said to her: "Oh no, do not let our little
grandchild go away from our tepee."
But the cousin answered: "Oh, do let me carry it. I do so want to
show my cousin honor." At last they let her go away with the pet
rabbit on her back.
When the little girl's cousin came home to her tepee, some rough
boys who were playing about began to make sport of her. To tease
the little girl they threw stones and sticks at the pet rabbit. At
last a stick struck the little rabbit upon the head and
When her pet was brought home dead, the little rabbit's adopted
mother wept bitterly. She cut off her hair for mourning and all
her little girl friends wailed with her. Her mother, too, mourned
"Alas!" they cried, "alas, for the little rabbit. He was always
kind and gentle. Now your child is dead and you will be lonesome."
The little girl's mother called in her little friends and made a
great mourning feast for the little rabbit. As he lay in the tepee
his adopted mother's little friends brought many precious things
and covered his body. At the feast were given away robes and
kettles and blankets and knives and great wealth in honor of the
little rabbit. Him they wrapped in a robe with his little
moccasins on and buried him in a high place upon a scaffold.