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Yup'ik RavenMarshall Cultural Atlas

This collection of student work is from Frank Keim's classes. He has wanted to share these works for others to use as an example of Culturally-based curriculum and documentation. These documents have been OCR-scanned. These are available for educational use only.






Raven Lost His Eyes

Raven Lost His Eyes

Here is a story of Raven and what he did. Raven sat on the edge of a bank. He looked up and down the river but he did not see anyone. His eyes were getting tired so he took his eyes

He went back to bed, and after a long time later, his eyes to tell him again that someone was coming down the river. This time he thought to himself, 'It's lying to me again.'

The eyes said that someone was coming closer. After a while, his eyes did not say anything any more. Raven was blind so he felt his way back out. He felt for his eyes where he bought he left them hanging. He kept searching for his eyes. He really lost the place and he felt the ground and found a deep trail. Up there a little ways, there was a ridge coming down from a mountain. He knew of this place where there were no trees. He though, "Maybe if I put a berry in my eye, I will see again.' So he started for that place. He had a hard time. He even crawled. When he got there, he found a blueberry which he put in place of his eyes. When he put the berries in, he could not see with them. They were too dark. He knew there was another ridge coming down the mountains and a trail going across there so he crawled across there. He found something like cranberries and tried those for his eyes. But when he put them in, everything looked red to him. They did not fit either. They kept falling out because they were too small. He did not know what to do, so he kept climbing and found another berry, it was the Canadian Jay's eyes. He could see with this berry, but his eyes were red. He looked like a man, but a person from some other place. He came back down to his house, and he though to himself, "Maybe I should paddle up river to see where they put my eyes." He had a canoe and started up river. He was paddling when he heard up there among the big trees what sounded like a lot of people laughing. He wanted to find out what all the noise was about.

He stopped on the bank and pulled his canoe up, and started to walk back there into the woods. But when he walked back there, it was a portage, and there was nobody there. The noise was still heard in the woods, however. When he went down to the river, he found a house. Before he came to the house, he put a bunch of spruce boughs in a pile. He spread them out, and then he defecated on it. When he did that it became clothes. He put these fancy clothes on. The mukluks were the prettiest. Then he put on another pile of spruce boughs and defecated again. Again there were clothes there. He came down to a house by the river. There was a young girl there who did not go with the others. She was a single girl waiting for the right man to come along. She told him she was asked a lot of times by men to marry her but she did not. When Raven showed her the clothes that he had in the bag, she decided to marry him. The girl told him, "I will marry you."

By this time, the people that were in the woods came back down. They saw Raven. They thought he was and odd stranger. The girl told them that she wanted to marry this person. They told her to go ahead and marry him so they got married.

In the day time, the people went back into the woods to have fun, but the couple never went there. One day, he(Raven) asked his wife, "What are those people doing back there?" His wife told him, "I don't know. But they are playing with something that someone said was Raven's eyes which someone brought back. They sewed something over them so they do not look like Raven's eyes." So Raven found out that they were playing with his eyes.

The people came back in the evening, but in the morning, they went back up and started to play with the ball. "Let's go up and see what they are doing," he told his wife. "I want to know what they really do." So they started up the trail.

As they were walking, they saw what looked like a big sandbar. It was a big area where there were no trees. That was where they were playing. He sat by the edge to see the game of ball they were playing. As he was sitting there, he watched the ball. There were two of them. Sometimes the eyes fell far apart. He wanted to get them but there was no way. He really wanted to get his eyes back. He sat there wishing they would both fall where they were sitting. As he wished, the eyes fell where they were sitting. He grabbed them and took them back. As the players reached for him, he put his eyes back on himself. And he flew off saying those were his eyes.

He landed on top of a big tree. The players were really mad at him. They were telling him how bad he was and told him, "Maybe we should hit you with an arrow."

He sat there for a while then took off. As he was going up, his wife who was still standing there, her clothes became Raven's droppings. They were all white with it. The clothes that she was wearing were very pretty before all this happened. Everyone was mad at Raven. He flew back to his canoe and became a man again. Now that he had his real eyes back, he threw away all those berries that he used for his eyes, and he came back to his home.

Miska Deaphon, Nikolai Nwch'ihwzoya'

Dotson' Sa, Great Raven Makes The World

Raven Steals The Light

When Raven Was Killed

How Raven Killed The Whale

Raven and Mink

Raven Lost His Eyes

- Miska Deaphon, Nikolai Nwch'ihwzoya'

Raven and Goose-Wife

Student Encounters
Original Student Folktales
from our community
S.E. Alaska


Christmastime Tales
Stories real and imaginary about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 1996
Christmastime Tales II
Stories about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 1998
Christmastime Tales III
Stories about Christmas, Slavik, and the New Year
Winter, 2000
Summer Time Tails 1992 Summertime Tails II 1993 Summertime Tails III
Summertime Tails IV Fall, 1995 Summertime Tails V Fall, 1996 Summertime Tails VI Fall, 1997
Summertime Tails VII Fall, 1999 Signs of the Times November 1996 Creative Stories From Creative Imaginations
Mustang Mind Manglers - Stories of the Far Out, the Frightening and the Fantastic 1993 Yupik Gourmet - A Book of Recipes  
M&M Monthly    
Happy Moose Hunting! September Edition 1997 Happy Easter! March/April 1998 Merry Christmas December Edition 1997
Happy Valentine’s Day! February Edition 1998 Happy Easter! March/April Edition 2000 Happy Thanksgiving Nov. Edition, 1997
Happy Halloween October 1997 Edition Edible and Useful Plants of Scammon Bay Edible Plants of Hooper Bay 1981
The Flowers of Scammon Bay Alaska Poems of Hooper Bay Scammon Bay (Upward Bound Students)
Family Trees and the Buzzy Lord It takes a Village - A guide for parents May 1997 People in Our Community
Buildings and Personalities of Marshall Marshall Village PROFILE Qigeckalleq Pellullermeng ‘A Glimpse of the Past’
Raven’s Stories Spring 1995 Bird Stories from Scammon Bay The Sea Around Us
Ellamyua - The Great Weather - Stories about the Weather Spring 1996 Moose Fire - Stories and Poems about Moose November, 1998 Bears Bees and Bald Eagles Winter 1992-1993
Fish Fire and Water - Stories about fish, global warming and the future November, 1997 Wolf Fire - Stories and Poems about Wolves Bear Fire - Stories and Poems about Bears Spring, 1992



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Last modified August 23, 2006