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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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TALE ABOUT A GIRL WHO CRIED PEARLS

ONCE UPON A TIME, THERE LIVED A HAPPY FAMILY. THEY LIVED NEAR
THE FOREST. THERE WERE TWO CHILDREN, A MOTHER, AND A FATHER. THE
CHILDREN WERE A BOY AND A GIRL. ONE DAY THEIR MOTHER BECAME ILL AND
DIED.
A YEAR LATER, THEIR FATHER REMARRIED A WIDOW THAT HAD A GIRL.
FOR A TIME, THEY WERE ALL HAPPY.
THE BOY'S SISTER WAS QUITE BEAUTIFUL COMPARED TO HIS
STEP-SISTER, AND BECAUSE OF THIS THEIR STEP-MOTHER WAS VERY JEALOUS
OF THE GIRL.
TIME WENT BY. THE BOY GREW TO BE A FINE MAN AND WAS DRAFTED INTO
THE ARMY. AT THAT TIME, THE STEP-MOTHER TALKED THE FATHER INTO
TAKING HIS DAUGHTER TO THE FOREST TO PICK BERRIES. HE TOLD THE GIRL
HE WOULD BE BACK TO GET HER.
THE GIRL STARTED TO CRY. IT WAS GETTING DARK SLOWLY. A SHORT
DISTANCE FROM HER SHE SAW THREE BOYS. THEY ASKED HER WHY SHE WAS
CRYING. SHE TOLD THEM ABOUT HER FATHER LEAVING HER IN THE FOREST AN
NOT PICKING HER UP.
ONE OF THE BOYS SAID, "WHAT KIND OF A PRESENT SHOULD WE GIVE
HER?" ONE SAID THAT HE WOULD GIVE HER A SWEET FRAGRANCE WHEN SHE
WOULD SMILE. ANOTHER SAID THAT HE WOULD MAKE PEARLS DROP FROM HER
EYES WHEN SHE WOULD CRY. THE LAST ONE SAID THAT SHE WOULD HAVE
BEAUTIFUL GOLDFISH SWIMMING IN THE WATER BASIN WHEN SHE WOULD GO TO
WASH HER FACE. THEY WERE ANGELS. THEY THEN SHOWED HER THE WAY HOME
SHE ARRIVED HOME VERY LATE AND KNOCKED AT THE DOOR. THE
STEP-MOTHER ACTED SURPRISED AND MADE SOME EXCUSE WHY THE FATHER HAD
LEFT HER IN THE FOREST. SHE SPANKED HER AND THE GIRL STARTED TO CRY
PEARLS CAME FROM HER EYES. WHEN HER FATHER CAME HOME, SHE SMILED AN
A BEAUTIFUL AROMA CAME FORTH. LATER WHEN SHE WENT TO WASH HER FACE,
BEAUTIFUL GOLDFISH WERE SWIMMING IN THE WASHBOWL. THE STEP-MOTHER
WAS UPSET ABOUT IT AND ASKED HER TO TELL HER HOW THESE THINGS
HAPPENED.
AFTER THE GIRL HAD TOLD HER THE STORY ABOUT THE THREE BOYS, THE
STEP-MOTHER DECIDED TO SEND HER DAUGHTER TO THE FOREST ALSO. SHE
INSTRUCTED HER DAUGHTER TO ACT THE SAME WAY AS HER STEP-DAUGHTER.
PERHAPS THEY WOULD ALSO GIVE HER GIFTS. INSTEAD THE DAUGHTER
RECEIVED THREE DIFFERENT GIFTS. ONE WAS THAT WHEN SHE WOULD SMILE,
SHE WOULD HAVE AN AWFUL SMELL AROUND HER. ANOTHER WAS THAT WHEN SHE
WOULD CRY, ROCKS WOULD FALL FROM HER EYES, AND LAST OF ALL, SHE WOUL
HAVE UGLY LIZARDS SWIMMING IN THE WASHBASIN WHEN SHE WOULD WASH HER
FACE.
WHEN ALL THESE THINGS HAPPENED, THE STEP-MOTHER BECAME UPSET AND
WENT TO SEE WHAT SHE COULD DO TO REVERSE THE GIFTS. SHE WENT TO A
WITCH AND ASKED FOR HELP. THE WITCH SAID THAT HE COULD NOT REVERSE
THE GIFTS, BUT HE COULD TURN HER STEP-DAUGHTER INTO A DUCK. AND SO
HE DID.
THE DUCK ALWAYS STAYED NEAR THEIR PROPERTY. AFTER A TIME, THE
FATHER DIED. THE BROTHER WAS CALLED HOME FROM THE ARMY FOR THE
FUNERAL. WHEN HE ARRIVED HOME, HE ASKED ABOUT HIS SISTER. NO ONE
KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT HER WHEREABOUTS. HE CAME HOME WITH A FRIEND OF
HIS FOR THE FUNERAL AND TO VIEW HIS FATHER'S BODY.
THE COFFIN WAS LAYING IN THE CHURCH IN THE EVENING BECAUSE THE
FUNERAL WAS PLANNED FOR THE NEXT DAY. THE BROTHER AND HIS FRIEND
WENT TO THE CHURCH AND FOUND PEARLS ALL AROUND THE COFFIN. THEY
DECIDED TO HIDE IN THE CHURCH AND SEE IF THEY COULD FIND OUT WHY
THERE WERE PEARLS LAYING ON THE FLOOR. HE ASKED THAT THE FUNERAL BE
DELAYED.
THEY HID IN THE CHOIR LOFT AND WHEN THEY HEARD A MOVEMENT,
LOOKED DOWN TO SEE A DUCK FLY INTO THE CHURCH. AFTER THE DUCK SHOOK
ITS WINGS, THE SISTER CAME OUT OF THE DUCK'S BODY AND WAS CRYING FOR
THE FATHER AS THE PEARLS FELL FROM HER EYES.
THE SISTER WAS TALKING TO THE DEAD FATHER AND SAID THAT THE STEP-
MOTHER HAD TURNED HER INTO A DUCK. THE TWO YOUNG MEN CREPT QUIETLY
OUT OF THE CHOIR LOFT AND TOOK A MATCH AND BURNED THE BODY OF THE
DUCK. THIS SAVED THE GIRL FROM EVER RETURNING BACK INTO THE FORM OF
THE DUCK. SHE WAS SO HAPPY THAT SHE MARRIED HER BROTHER'S FRIEND
AND LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT LEARNED THIS STORY AT AN EVENING OF FAMILY STORY TELLING A
A YOUNG BOY IN LUKOWA, POLAND. WHEN DESCRIBING THE GIFTS OF THE
BEAUTIFUL GIRL, HIS VOICE WAS VERY SOFT AND EVEN EXPRESSED PITY WITH
HER SITUATION.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTRAST ; WIZARD

Subject headings: Favorites

Date learned: 02-12-1980 ; 00-00-1934

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SPIRIT

ON AN AUGUST DAY WHEN THE SUN IS HIGHEST IN THE SKY AT 12
NOON, STAND WITH THREE FRIENDS IN A WOODED, DESERTED AREA. AT
EXACTLY 12 NOON HAVE EVERYONE STARE AT EACH OTHER; THE SUN COMING
THROUGH THE TREES SHOULD FORM A HALO OVER THE PERSON OR PERSONS
WHO HAVE ANY POWERS OF WITCHCRAFT OR WIZARDRY IN THEIR BLOOD.

Data entry tech comment:

SPELLING CORRECTED BY KEY PUNCHER

Updated by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Halo ; NATURE ; SIGN ; SPIRIT ; SYMBOL ; Witchcraft ; WIZARD

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Witch Shaman

Date learned: 02-13-1972

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