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Carolyn Sherwin Bailey

Brother Wolf and the Rock

O NCE upon a time Brother Wolf dressed himself up very finely, just like an Indian. He put feathers on his head, and moccasins on his feet, and beads around his neck. Then he bought a mighty gay blanket, just like a chief's blanket. He wrapped it all around him, and then he started on a journey.

As he traveled, he came to a big Rock. Brother Wolf thought that he had never seen such a nice Rock, such a smooth, round, shining Rock. But Brother Wolf thought that the Rock looked cold. So he took off his mighty gay blanket and wrapped it around the Rock to keep the old Rock warm.

Then Brother Wolf started traveling again, but he had not gone very far when he heard a loud noise—that was the thunder; and he saw a bright light—that was the lightning—and he felt something wet on his nose—that was the rain. So Brother Wolf ran back in great haste to the Rock.

"Oh, Rock," cried Brother Wolf, "it is storming, and I shall be wet. Give me back my blanket to keep off the rain."

But, no, Rock would not. Old Rock said he would just keep Brother Wolf's blanket a little longer.

Then Brother Wolf hid under a tree, and, by and by, along came Brother Fox.

"Oh, Brother Fox," said Brother Wolf, "go to Rock and bring back my mighty gay blanket."

So Brother Fox went to old Rock and told him that Brother Wolf wanted back his mighty gay blanket to keep the rain off his nose. But, no, old Rock would not give up the blanket.

Then Brother Fox went back and told Brother Wolf, and Brother Wolf cried because he knew his feathers would be spoiled. They sat under a tree, and the rain poured and poured, the lightning flashed, and the thunder roared. Brother Wolf asked Brother Fox to please go again to old Rock and ask him for the mighty gay blanket, but Brother Fox said, "No."

After a while they heard a great noise, and a loud roaring. The stones in the road began to come skipping by. Brother Wolf peeped out from under the tree. There was old Rock rolling down the road. The rain had started him, and he was coming so hard that he tore great furrows of earth, and uprooted the trees. He came so fast that he could not stop himself.

Brother Fox scampered into a hole to hide, but he left the tip end of his tail sticking out. Old Rock just grazed it as he went by, and that is why the tip of Brother Fox's tail is white.

On and on went old Rock until he came to a river. Splash, in he went, and that was the last that anybody saw of Rock, for he went straight to the bottom.

When the rain was over, Brother Wolf and Brother Fox went down to the river bank to look for old Rock, but they could not find him anywhere. On the top of the water floated Brother Wolf's mighty gay blanket, so they waited until it came ashore, and they dried it in the sun.

Then Brother Wolf said, "Good-by," to Brother Fox, and put on his mighty gay blanket again, and traveled.