top of page

A Tale of Seven Sisters

The important thing to know about stories is their proper use and purpose. The proper purpose of our star stories is to tell us something about time; either about an event that occurred at a particular time, or an annual event to be mindful of. The tale that follows is not a cultural myth of any particular nation - or even one continent - but an amalgamation of many stories regarding the constellation known as the Pleiades, and how the time of their departure (April 15) is significant to living with the land here in Oklahoma. I should also point out that this is a bottle gourd story, and it is best told while preparing dried gourds for use as containers. I use a set of seven seashells for this, as they become characters in the story, as well.

Now once upon a time, long before I was a young person (which is a very long time indeed!) There were Seven sisters, who lived in the sky, and they were always together, Where one sister went, the others were bound to go. There was also a great giant who lived in the sky, and he kept a flock of beautiful white birds. Once, the sisters snuck into the giant's lair, and took the white feathers to make cloaks for themselves. The giant found out about the theft, and quickly began to chase after the girls. You can still see six of those Seven sisters in the sky today, wearing their white cloaks, and following behind them, there is the giant. What happened to the Seventh sister is one of the oldest stories I know. It involves a young human man named Ihiya, after the river cane that grows by his home.

Of course, one can't run all of the time. When the sisters grew tired of running for a while, they would come down to the ground, and dance across the ponds, lakes, rivers and streams, freezing them solid (it is very cold high up in the sky, and that is why the sisters make everything freeze. They are made of ice). Sometimes, the sisters dancing will stir up the waters, and make great clouds across the sky .. so that they can rest without the giant seeing them. On these occasions they rest all across the landscape, on ponds and lakes, on rocks, on trees, and even on the roofs of our homes!

On one evening the sky had cleared early despite the maidens' efforts, and the moon was shining brightly overhead. A young man ventured out to have a look at all of the brilliant whiteness reflecting the moonlight .. and that is when he saw her. Now I know that some of you reading, or hearing this story might not believe such a thing can happen yet, but In time, I'm sur