The Scent of the Skunk A Native American Folk Tale Retold By: Bernice Insley Presented by: Julie Clausen, Cassandra King, Josh Carda, and Jennifer Munger
<ul><li>The skunk was once a larger animal than he is now-he was as large as a hill. But he became smaller and smaller and this caused him to worry. </li></ul>
<ul><li>“If I grow smaller and smaller,” he said, “I will lose my strength. Then how can I hunt, and kill my game, and make my living?” And so he thought and thought. </li></ul>
“ I know,” he said. “I will make a strong hunting medicine which will give be skill even when I am not so large as now.” He hunted and hunted to find all the plants he could grasp in his hand, he took them home.
<ul><li>He ground them up very, very fine, like a powder. Then, when this medicine was all prepared, he placed it in a little pouch that he carried with him wherever he went. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Then he said, “I will test my medicine against the biggest, strongest thing I can find.” He looked around, and there he saw a large oak tree; nothing could be bigger or stronger than this tree, and decided to test his medicine against it. </li></ul>
He took some powder out of his pouch -only a pinch of the powder was needed- and put it in some water, and drank it. Then, to make still more powerful medicine, he sang, “Who is going out hunting, for I go out to hunt?”
<ul><li>Then the skunk shot at the oak tree - not with an arrow, but with this medicine, a foul-smelling liquid- and the tree shrank away and died, and looked as if it were burned. Nothing was left but a pile of ashes. </li></ul>
The hunting medicine made by that skunk was the same as that the skunk carries today.
Source: <ul><li>Skunk and Opossum Folk Tales, Myths, Fables, and Legends. Retold by Bernice Insley. <http://elvis.neep.wisc.edu/~firmiss </li></ul><ul><li>/mephitis-didelphis/tales </li></ul><ul><li>/skunk-scent-s.html> </li></ul>