Nänabushu and the Dancing Bullrushes
Ningoding babimosed, “Aaniin?” Gii-inendam.
O’ow idash gii-inendam: “Gonige gaawin ninga-gashkitoosiin!”
Ningoding igo babimosed, ogii-waabamaa i’iw ininiwa’ Gisji-oSaamiininit wii-niimi’idwa’
O’ow idash ogii-igoon iniw bezhig: “Aaniin gaye giin ina, Nenaboozhoo, Giga-niim?” ogii-goon.
“Aye´, nishiime sa ninga-niim gaye niin,” ogii-inaan.
Gakina bingwaashaagidiwa’, mii dash gakina ezhi’onid i’iw babikwaangenaa batakibine’onid.
“Gaye giin ina giwii-niim?” Gii-inaa a´aw Nenaboozhoo.
“Mii na go iw iidog zhigwa wii-wiidookaazoyan?
Gi-noondam ina minik i’iw isa minik waa-niimi’iding?
Mii dash gaye wiin gaa-izhi’od, gii-batakibinwe’od.
Mii dash apii maajitaanid, naawaya’ii gaa-izhooshigaabawid gaye qiin gii-niimid.
Mii dash apii gii-maajitaanid, aaniish mii sa gaye wiin i’imaa gaa-indashiiweshimot; baabnaginange inakamigiziwa’.
Geget sa gichi-niimi’idiwa i’imaa.
Mii dash i’imaa endazhiweshimod, niiyogon gaa-niimid.
Aaniish i’imaa wiijiiwaad i’iw isa gaa-niiyogonagadanig.
Mii dash apii gii-inind: “Ambe sa noo ayaagwaamizin,” gii-inaa aw Nenaboozhoo.
Mii dash apii zhigwa gii-ozhi’onid; gaa-izhi-miskwaakwiyowenid, aaniish mii go gaye wiin gaa-izhi’od a’aw Nenaboozhoo.
Gii-naaniimid mii imaa, aanish gaawiin aanawi mashi ayekozisii.
Mii dash geget enigok niiminid.
Abaapish gaa ningodwaasogonagadinig, mii dash apii e-ni-waabaninig zhigwa gikendang ayekozid.
Mii go iw ezhi-ziigisenig oshkiinzhigoon.
Geget sa nanoondendam jibwaa-waabininig.
Gegapii igo gichi-mawi i’iw epiichi-dibikadinig.
Mii dash i’iw ji-ishkwaa-niimi’idinig ani-waabaninig.
Mii sa agaawaa ogashkidoon aano-niimid, aaniish ayekozi.
Zhayiigwa aanawi bi-yaabanini, mii sa zhayiigwa nanaawajimonid.
Mii dash aanawi biidaabi-waabaninig, aanish mii go iw ezhi-nasine mawid, epiichi-ayekozit.
Ningoding igo, e-shkwaa-webinigenid, gii-niibawi megwe-zhaashaaganashkokaa, aaniish gaa-izhinaagoskang iniw zhaazhaaganashkaan miinangwona iniw gaa-izhinang.
Mii dash geget naanoondendam jibwaa-waabaninig, mii dash ezhi-mawid, epiichi-ayekozid.
Ningoding igo i’iw akawaabandang ji-bi-waabaninig, zhigwa gegedo waabandaan bi-waabaninig.
Mii dash gaa-inendang: “Ambegish ge-izhitine gibimi-baagaakaabang!”
Mii dash geget zhigwa dibishkoojaya’ii bimi-akwaabanini.
Aaniish mii go iw mookwishimod.
Mii dash inaabid; geget i’imaa, niibawid, goniginiin megwe zhaashaaganagashkokaa gii-niibawi.
Mii sa ndawaa ezhi-naadagaame ayaad.
Mii dash nangwana i’iniw gaa-izhinang zhaashaaganashkoon anishinaabeng gaa-izhinang.
Mii nangwana iw apii ko i´iw gii-ani-dagwaagig mii nangwana i´iw gii-gichi-naanooding.
Mii nangwana i’iniw gaa-gii-izhinang iniw zhaashganashkoon.
NAA mii dash inangwana i’imaa wawiyazh gii-izhiwebizid.
While he was once walking along, “What (is it)?” he thought.
“Wonder (what it can be)?”
Now, this he thought: “I wonder if I am unable to do it!”
And as he was once walking along, he saw some men fathered in a throng to dance together.
And this he was asked by one of them: “You too, Nanabushu, are you going to dance?” he was asked.
“Yes, my little brother, I too am going to dance,” he said to him.
They were all naked; and the only dress they all had was a feather, with all but the top stripped from the shaft, standing perched upon their heads.
“And do you also wish to dance?” they said to Nanabushu.
“Without doubt it must be your wish to participate?
Have you heard how many days they will be dancing?
Eight days will they be dancing.”
Thereupon he himself dressed in the same costume, he had a feather standing upon his head.
Now, when they began, in their midst was where he stood and also danced.
Now, when the others began (dancing), thereupon then and there did he dance; a rousing time did they have.
Of a truth, a great dance they had together there.
And now, there where he was dancing, four days did he dance.
So there he helped them for a space of four days.
And that was when they said to him: “We beg of you, display your zeal,” they said to Nanabushu.
“Don’t let up before the affair is over.”
Now, that was when they began to paint themselves; after they were painted red, then the same to himself did Nanabushu.
He kept right on dancing there at the place, for not even yet was he weary.
And so truly qirh muxh fervor he danced.
By the time the sixth day was up, and when the light of orning was coming on, he began to realize that he was growing tired.
Thereupon the tears streamed from his eyes.
In good earnest was he anxious for the morning to come.
Then at last he wept aloud for that the night was yet far from spent.
And now the dance would be over during the coming-on of the orning.
And so hardly was he able to dance, for he was tired.
By and by, nevertheless, the dawn began to break, whereupon the others then began whooping.
In spite of the breaking of the dawn, he was nevertheless weeping all the while, so very tired was he.
Now presently, after the others had ceased with their music, there he was standing in amongst the bulrushes, for what he had met with was the bulrushes, which he had supposed (to be people dancing).
It was true that he had grown restless before it was morning, and so he was weeping, he was so tired.
But of a sudden, while waiting for the morrow, he then truly saw the coming of the morning.
And this is what he thought: “would that at once the full light of day might appear!”
Whereupon truly now straight overhead had come the line of the morning light.
Now, by that time he was tired out by reason of the dance.
And so he looked; truly, there where he was standing, to his surprise, was in among the bulrushes.
On recognizing (what he had been dancing with), he made his way close to the shore.
Thereupon it became a fact that he had taken the bullrushes for people.
It had happened to be in the autumn, during the season when there was always a strong wind blowing.
It was true that such was the way he had seen the bullrushes.
Therefore that was a time when he had a joke played on him.