Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required. To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? Learn more about Amazon Prime. Mabel, factory chicken, escapes to the Appalachian Mountains where she encounters talking plants and animals. With the help of these forest creatures, she survives from spring into fall, narrowly escaping death by the red fox. With winter upon her, Mabel is in a quandary over whether she should try to survive the bitter cold and risk death or join a family farm and risk losing her independence.
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Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. Mabel's Escape to Appalachia. Set up a giveaway. Feedback If you need help or have a question for Customer Service, contact us. Would you like to report poor quality or formatting in this book? Click here Would you like to report this content as inappropriate? Click here Do you believe that this item violates a copyright? But this boy is too young. His seed has not ripened for planting yet. Let him go to care for his sisters on the way to the west. Behind them, as they started on the long main road, they heard the sound of the shots. In what ways do the values of Tsali differ from those of the men who want his land?
Does Tsali fit your concept of a hero? The conflict between the white man and the Indian is an age-old one. What are some of the basic causes of this conflict as illustrated in the story of Tsali? The word seed is used symbolically at the end of this story. Is there evil in this story? Are they presented implicitly or explicitly? He grew up in Big Sandy Valley in Kentucky. Williams attended Cumberland College in Williamsburg, Kentucky. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Kentucky and his doctorate from New York University.
He taught at Appalachian State University where he became dean of the graduate school and where in he served as Acting Chancellor. His writings include scholarly works on the Southern mountaineer and Appalachian speech. The following was taken from a presentation he was invited to make describing the many characteristics of the dialect of the Southern Appalachian region.
Dialect and Speech Begin, began, begun, for the mountaineer is begin, begin, begin or once in a while begin, begun, begun. This is a fairly easy thing to remember: Also, he does not bother his head in any way with fine distinctions in the use of such verbs as sit, set; lie, lay; rise, raise. The mountaineer doesn't have that trouble; he is very economical. He says "set" every time. He never says "sit," a putting-on-the-dog kind of word. He wouldn't say "sat" at all. It's "set" every time. Tohim, "lie" means to bear false witness, and except for that, he uses "lay" every time. The sun will "rise," and one can have a "risin," a bealing or a boil, on him.
In other instances, one uses a form of "raise," as "He raised up. You can find vittles in a dictionary. It's a perfectly good word, and the mountaineer pronounces it correctly. It means food and is spelled victuals and pronounced vittles, the only pronunciation allowed for it. There's nothing wrong with the mountaineer's use of fetch, also a perfectly good word. And poke, of course, Chaucer used. Everybody knows the expression "pig in a poke," though most people that use it don't really know what it means. Poke is a Middle English word which means bag. If one has a polysyllabic word for a name, then, in the hill country he might have it reduced to one syllable or two.
We still say "sargent. In time he dropped the first syllable and said 'tarnal. Tarnation has to do with damnation, and is a 28 Oral Tradition mild curse word. It would be used only in a polite situation, for when the mountaineer is in the right situation and wants to curse he has a magnificent vocabulary.
He knows how to put things together. Scurillity, obscenity, and oaths he can weave together in an almost poetic discharge.
But he has to be in just the right mood and in a real rage to do that. In polite society he'd use such words as tarnation or tamacious. Double negatives are used for emphasis, as Shakespeare did, and the Bible does. Therefore, the more you want to make a thing positive the more negatives you use.
That's the way the mountaineers do it. That's the way it should have remained. The English teachers became bothered by negatives and started applying mathematics. They began talking about one negative's cancelling out another. I believe there are six negatives in a row in that sentence. I've already referred to the mountaineer's fondness for the Middle English preposition a-. He's fond of prepositions generally and the more of them he can put into a sentence the more accurately he believes he is saying what he means.
Prepositional clusters in mountain speech are magnificent. They are handled so skillfully that they sometimes sound like one word. Unless you are really listening you don't notice them. You have heard fur to for to. I wanted one of those pies but she told me, "No, these pies are for company. She had set the pies on the window ledge in the dining room to cool before putting them in the safe, a kind of cupboard, kept in the comer, which had metal doors and sides with perforations in the metal for ventilation.
But the holes were so small that insects couldn't get in. We had no refrigeration then. We had a big dining room table with an ornately flowered oil cloth cover that came almost to the floor all the way around. I was doing quite well with it when I heard my mother walk across the floor. All I could see were her shoes. She walked over to the window ledge.
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There was this very dramatic silence. I was holding my breath. My mother was not making a sound. In a moment, she lifted the comer of that tablecloth slowly, and peeked under it. I'll wear every bit of hide from off from upon your back. But a long time ago we were told that we don't need all of those prepositions. You have to listen for them.
They almost come out as one word. I want now to tell the beginning of a folktale, "The Fox and the Bumblebee.
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He had to have him a quarterlampal, an' a plug o' chawin backer, and he 'lowed by gonnies he might buy 'im a can of sammons if the price uz right. And whilst he uz a-sankerin along, a-thankin about first one thang and then t'other, he seed one of these here big yaller striped y bellied bummel bees a-smoulin over a flare blossom 'at uz a-growin on a mornin glory vine on one of the postes thar by the side of the big road. So's'n he snuck up right easy like and rech out and snabbed him and popped him into a poke he had with'm, and then went on.
Ditn't git stung nary time. D'reckly, he come to this here house 'at as a-stan- din acrosst the branch. He walked right down feminst the door and hollerd "hello. I been a- aimin to reddin up this here old place fer mighten nigh a 30 Oral Tradition week, but a body can't never git around to a-doin nothin, don't 'pear like. Jist putt it down yan side of the farplace, if you can find room fer it.
Then, he looked at the womern right straight like, and says to her, says, "Now, don't you be a-openin that there poke whilst I'm gone. Well, agin he's out o' sight and sound of the house, the womern says, "Now, I jist wonder what's in that there poke? But, the dang thang got away. She tied the strang back, jist like it was, best she could ricollect, putt the poke back down, hooved it up a little in the middle so's'n lut'd look like hit hatn't been teched, and went on about her work.
Atter a while the fox comes back. He walks over and picks up the poke, onties the strang, onwrops it, but the bummel bee o' course is gone. He says, "Whur's my bummel bee? My old rooster jist happent to be a-standin there tuck out atter it, but the dang thang got away. You know the story, I suppose. It is one of those around- and-around stories. The fox goes from one house to another, repeating the same kind of deal. It's incorrect in America to add a t as in onest, but old fashioned Americans do.
Onest and twicet are not restricted to the mountains. One hears them in the Midwest also. Aye in "aye gonnies" means yes. Gonnies, a mild oath, might have something to do with what belongs to God, but is perhaps a dialectical pronunciation of "guineas," which were British gold pieces. I used to hear my father say that. According to records, many mountaineers continued to vote for Andrew Jackson for President for a generation after he died because they refused to vote for anybody else.
The go suggests God. Gollies might mean "God's laws. The outsider coming to the mountains will hear you'uns and our'n, and he'll go back home absolutely convinced that he heard them say we'uns, too, but I don't believe I have ever heard one say it. I always insist that they don't say it, but sometimes people will say to me, "Oh, you just haven't been listening.
I know some who say it. I've received no notes. I believe people just think they have heard it. One finds it in Chaucer's works. Third person present tense verbs are also syllabicated sometimes, as in "He boastes too much," or "She roastes chicken over a open far. That speech as delivered is spoken by perhaps not more than one million of the eight or nine million Appalachians still living in Appalachia. And that's to put the speech in the story in perspective so you won't think all mountain folks speak that way.
Younguns, right out of Anglosaxon, means children. It's an Anglosaxon word that means "young ones. I've never heard it used but let's assume it is. What does it mean? It means "we ones. It's an interloper, an intruder, from outside. Mountaineers are ashamed of theirs. You probably hear it more often here.
In the mountains it doesn't mean the same as salad. One might hear a mountain person talk about the salad and the sallet. He has two different things in mind. Sallet is greens he gathers in the garden and cooks. I remember my greatgrandfather, who died when I was He used very old fashioned English, and as far as I know he was completely illiterate, but he would say "s'l" and "s'e" and "sas'I," and "sas'e," meaning "says I" and "says he.
His speech went away back almost to the time of Daniel Boone, who would have used these expressions, too. Mountain folk use weak forms of some verbs that remain strong verbs in standard English. Seed is one of them. They will say see, seed, seed, or seen. They have retained the Anglosaxon concept of the verb learn. In Anglosaxon, learn meant "to learn" or "to teach" either.
So to the man who lives in the hills, "to teach" means simply to hold a school. He says teached instead of taught, but learn has to do with the act of learning. He teached the poorest school I can remember. He didn't learn the younguns a thing. Some of these Scotch-Irish moved to other places and they carried their speech with them. One could go into the Ozarks, for example, and hear the same kind of speech we have here. One could go into Southern Indiana, where communities have retained their Scotch-Irish descendants, and hear the same kind of speech, or Ohio, or Illinois, or Missouri, even upstate New York.
Wherever they went they carried their speech with them. That's the way it was in Middle English times. But he retained this and was not aware of it. It's interesting, too, that the mountain person seems to think again is two words, that gain is a noun and the object of the preposition a. He thinks this is a noun, I suspect, although he doesn't use the word as a noun.
He'll say, "Well, he done it, and I said something to him, and then he done it again. I didn't want no trouble with him, but then he done it another gain, and I let him have it right between the eyes. The mountaineer senses again as an adverbial conjunction, but it has long since ceased to be used as that in standard English. Did you notice in the story of the bumblebee that the teller of the story wanted to explain the obvious to you?
With all of his good qualities, he is also literal minded. The Bible means just exactly what it says, not one word more. The mountain preacher must preach exactly from that Bible. Anything he says away from the Bible is thought of as "not Godly. Politically, he tends to be just what his pappy was and he doesn't want to change.
General- 34 Oral Tradition ly, he has not learned how to be abstract. Since he works from facts only, he seems unable to engage in abstractions. He doesn't understand courts of law that deal with civil issues. In fact, he doesn't trust the courts at all. He thinks the courts are instruments that provide for the manipulation of his affairs by his enemies. Typically, he would rather solve his own problems. Dialect and Speech 1.
How is the mountaineer economical with verbs? Suggest examples of polysyllabic names that are shortened in the way Ebenezer and Cassandra are. What was the original purpose of double negatives? There she sang her way into the hearts of the settlement residents and met folklorists Alan Lomax and Burl Ives, who gave her opportunities to perform and record. These opportunities lead to her worldwide fame as a dulcimer player. In she received a Fulbright Scholarship to study folklore in the British Isles. She was one of the seven to make up the original board of directors of the Newport Folk Festival.
Since the publication of her book Singing Family of the Cumber- lands in , she has continued to write, perform, and record. In this excerpt from that book, she writes about her parents' meeting and marriage and the influence of singing and storytelling in the Ritchie family.
From Singing Family of the Cumberlands Oftentimes we would pester Dad to tell us about how he had met up with Mom, and how they had courted and so on. Children are so curious about such things. But he would never 36 Oral Tradition want to talk about that to us, and always told us to hush—it wasn't none of our business. He wouldn't get mad when we asked him, but just acted like it shamed him, and he would look sideways at Mom and give a little dry laugh and go out and study the weather. It was the evening of their golden wedding anniversary that we finally got all the facts out of Mom and Dad.
A soft June evening. The whole community had been in and out of our place that day, paying honor to them. We had cooked for weeks to be able to accommodate everybody with chicken and dumplings with all the trimmings, and it sure had been a big day. All the people brought presents, too. Dad had several gold tie-clasps and watch-chains. Mom had golden hair- combs, earrings, and all kinds of jewelry, and there were stacks of gold-trimmed trays, dishes, flower vases, and knickknacks, all over the place.
Best of all her presents Mom loved the one she got from Dad—a gold wedding band. After all these years! I'm really married,' she said. Finally toward evening everybody went home, and we were resting ourselves with hot tea around the table. Dad had gone off to take a nap after the hard day.
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The ring must have given Mom nerve, for after a while she went off into their room and came back with a letter. Handle it careful, it's old and crackly. Hard to read, too, yellow and fady, but you can tell what a pretty hand to write he was then. See how even the strokes of it, and the lovely curlicues!
He was alius the best scribe in the countryside about, anybody will tell you that. Unknown Friend, A friend of yours. Miss Sallie Hall, says that you said you wanted some pretty boy to write to you. You need not think I am good looking by me writing, for I am not. Some of the boys has told me you are a nice pretty girl and of course I would love to see you, for I think we could be friends, don't you? I will give you a brief description of myself so you may judge what I look like.
I am a young man 23 years of age, height 5 ft. If you axcept me as a correspondent I Think we could have some real good fun writing to each other, and very likely our correspondence would lead to something more serious. I have several correspondents who are strangers to me but we are interested in each others letters and if you answer this favorable I think I can interest you next time. If you should care to see my picture I will send you one with pleasure if you will send me yours.
After I send mine. Dad came stomping to complain that he couldn't sleep for the noise we were making, and, of course, he saw what it was we were all exclaiming over. But we wouldn't hush, and we asked them all manner of questions. Pretty soon they got to having such a good time recollecting that they well forgot we were there in the room.
Mom began musing out loud. Lor- die, Balis, do you remember when's the first time you laid eyes on me? It's a pure wonder you would have me after that, but I didn't take to you much neither that first sight we had of one another! It was nigh dinnertime, and we'uz a working hard to get our round hoed out when here come Betton, my baby sister, just a-cutting through the stalks.
She couldn't get good breath, she had run so fast. Pap grabbed at her, scared to death.
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He thought Mam was sick or something. Says he's a schoolteacher. From over in Knott he comes. Pap was a good man. At last he struck his hoe into the ground and started off down the hill. Guess maybe I ought to be seeing what he needs of us. He's come to spark Abbie. He says, 'Does Miss Abigail Hall live here?
You don't have to holler so loud and act so crazy. Wait'll I catch up with you, little feisty-britches! I was the messiest, dirtiest, poorest-looking critter you ever did see. Barefooted, old brown calico dress all tore and faded, old, black, dirty man's hat with holes in it big enough to throw a cat through. Sweat a-streaming down to my toes, and cornfield dust all over me. And the other girls and Philip 'uz all a-teasing the life out of me cler down the hill, having them a big time. Musta blowed it ten or fifteen times fore she run out of breath.
Any other time we'd a-thought the house was afire or something, but today I knew it was just her way of teasing me, too. Thinks I, I'll just slip in the back room and change my clothes, put on some shoes, and make Betton bring me the washpan back there. Sailed around the comer of the house, and there he was a- drying his hands on the towel, and a-grinning like he knew I'd come thataway. Mammy Sally had set him up in the back room to wash and get ready for dinner. Boys, I wisht then I could sink plum through the earth. I wheeled and tuck back around the house.
I was so hot and sunburnt and mad that I couldn't see straight. I thought I never would get over it, him a-catch- ing me like that, and him so proper.
I stomped into the kitchen, and I just felt like laying them all out east and west. Mary-Ann or Rhodie can have him for all I care too. I think he's the ugliest thing I ever saw in my life and I'm not going to pay any attention to him. Come to the table barefooted and in my ragged dress. Couldn't think of a solitary thing to say to that feller.
He kept looking at me and grinning, and I kept on looking at the vittles on my plate. Mammy Sally and Pap and t'others seemed like they had a good time talking to him and listening to him tell, but I couldn't open my mouth to save me. It's a pure wonder he ever looked at me again. Kept right on till we got so we could talk to one another, and somewhere in during that year we got to talking about marrying. I was sixteen and him twenty-three. That winter he had to study 40 Oral Tradition for his teaching certificate, and couldn't come over much, and then, too, it was a long trip through the mountains from Knott County in the winter weather.
In wintertime at home we generally had school for a few months, and I went steady that year. He seemed so much smarter than me! I'd set with my eyes on the snowy hills and dream about my wedding day. What it would be like, how long off and how close up it seemed, and what kind of cloth Pap would bring me for my dress. To this day I can't work sums and fractions because my mind just wasn't on the lessons that year. After that I sung it around the house so much that Mammy Sally threatened to whup me if I didn't hush. Somebody's fond and true.
Somebody's hair is very black and Somebody's eyes are, too. I love somebody fondly, I love somebody true, I love somebody with all of my heart And somebody loves me too. Somebody came to see me. Somebody came last night; Somebody ask me to be his bride Of course I said all right. I am somebody's darling, I am somebody's pride. And the day is not far distance When I'll be somebody's bride. Somebody's tall and handsome. Somebody's hair is very dark. Somebody's eyes are, too. I remember it well, mighty well,' said Dad.
Mom looked flustered at that, and dropped her eyes to her lap. You could hardly hear what she said when she spoke. She was all smiling. But I changed it a little,' she said. We all stayed quiet and by and by she remembered some more. Seems like it always did grow the tallest and bloom the biggest whitest blossoms right there. I had got a notion to carry flowers 42 Oral Tradition at my wedding, and I had been spying on the rhododendron for several days.
I gathered my arms full of them and waded back over and started to getting ready. I had to iron my dress, taking care not to scorch it, it was so white. Dad got the goods at the store. It was thin white goods with little ribs in it—now I forget what we called it—and I made the dress myself, in the pattern they made dresses then, with long puff sleeves and a high neck and full gathered skirt. Uncle Ira Combs married us—I asked for him special. They combed my hair and fastened it with combs, and carrying the flowers made me feel pretty and fine.
That's thirty mile easy. See if you catch folks today setting out to ride thirty mile one day's trip on a nag! Only way we had though, and it was a high good day we had for going. The sun was shining and it was right warm and windy. My traveling dress was black sateen with white collar and cuffs, and I wore that and rode side-saddle.
That was a funny time that trip. Doe Ritchie they call him now, Sam his name is, he took a notion to go along with us to the infare, and he's alius a right jokey kind of feller. Going across the Duane Mountain he got to showing off what a good rider he was, turned himself around right backards on the old mare and went whooping and hollering, making that nag just gallop along. Come to a bunch of cattle lying in the road, and he says, "Watch me ride right through them cows and not touch a one! Hit the horse in the belly and she reared and Sam went flying off on his head.
Didn't have a thing to catch onto, the way he was sitting. Swear we liked to have died laughing at him, soon as we found out he wasn't hurt much. I reckon all of Clear Creek was there to see us ride in, and to take our infare with us. The dinner was sitting on the table ready. We all sat down to eat and we didn't get up from that table until near dark, and then as I recollect it we wound up with dancing and gaming and singing all night till clear daybreak.
Wasn't that a time! Lordie mercy, seemed like they'uz a hundred people come in on us, but we got to naming them after that and it was just ten or fifteen boys and girls around on the Creek. But they were a-meaning business and I guess they'd shore have rid me on a rail, hadn't been for Mam getting so vexed and getting ahead of them. Granny Ratty's, until we could move out to ourselves. Abbie and Katty had just finished washing the supper dishes.
We had been somewheres that day, and had a right late supper. Katty was complaining because it was so dark and she had to bum up so much coal- oil to light our supper and their kitchen work afterwards. As I recall, it was one of the black dark nights when you couldn't see hand fore your face, no moon, and clouds kivering the stars up solid. I sot on the porch awhile until I heard them come out of the kitchen and I got up to go in where they were at, and when my eyes hit that light I commenced batting my eyelids, couldn't see a mortal thing.
Little old oil lamp didn't give off much light, you know, but that thick night had really settled in my eyes and even that much light fixed me up so I couldn't see for a minute. I thought it was Balis a-humming to himself but yander he stands on the doorsill. We come to get you! They're a-coming in now for to shivaree you young uns. You'd think they'd be dacent enough to wait a week, anyways.
I'll tell them rascals you'uns went to Hindman this morning early. By that time my eyes had give it up; I might just as well been stone blind.
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We couldn't see a natural blessed thing, but we finally barked our shins on a log I knew to be close to the road. Behind that log, betwixt it and the palings, was a sort of a sink place with bresh and trees growing round it. We hid in thar and boys, that was a master hiding place. Not too fur away from the house but that we could hear them talk, and with the lamp shining out the doors we could see them all wandering around, all in a puzzlement as to where we had got to.
One said he knew we were thar, said he heard Abbie talking to Katty in the kitchen. Her dry, deep voice sounded out plain as day. She let out to give them a piece of her mind then, and all the time me and Abbie was killing ourselves laughing out there in the dark. Call them out now. Tell them we won't bother them, just run a set or two, play Boston and Charlie around a little and then go home.
What do you say now? I'll make you wish you hadn't. Long as you agree to be civil, though, I reckon you're welcome to stay and pop your heels together some. But only for as long as you stay civil. They all just whooped and hollered when we come in, and they giggled and joshed us around, made sly remarks to one another for a while. Katty and Abbie flew around setting out candles and lamps and carrying the chairs out into the kitchen. We scrooched the beds back against the wall and in no time atall we were all a-stepping Charlie. Folks passing by in the road heard that good music, and they'd come by in to see why there was dancing at Katty Ritchie's and they not told about it.
The ones that came in after the play got sot in its numbers stood around the wall and watched and holp us clap and sing the words. Charlie's neat, and Charlie's sweet And Charlie he's a dandy, Charlie he's the very lad That stole my striped candy. My pretty little pink, I once did think I never could do without you. Since I lost all hopes of you I care very little about you. Over the river to feed my sheep And over the river Charlie, Over the river to feed my sheep And to measure up my barley.
Don't want your wheat, don't want your cheat. And neither do I want your barley. But I'll take a little of the best you got To bake a cake for Charlie. Over the river to feed my sheep And over the river, Charlie, Over the river to feed my sheep And to measure up my barley.
And Granny Katty, she begun to get into the sperrit of things—she alius did love merriment—and she fotch out her gingerbread stackcake that she had baked for Sunday. After I begged her awhile, she even let us drink a little bit of the elderberry wine that I had holpen her make, and she got to feeling better and better.
Now, if there was anything your Granny Katty was hard against, it was making a fool out of yourself over likker, so she was keeping a lookout wherever a knot of boys gathered up to see that no com was circulating. Granny knew by the way they acted that they were up to something, so she strained her ears and she heard them a-making it up to "git Balis out and fix him up proper.
She was a-letting fly with her tongue, too, and wasn't nobody alive could do that betterin her. Ain't got the sense you'uz born with! Git from here and don't go showing your face-and-eyes on my place another time this night, any one of you! They y ipped and beUered and lit out in all directions, knocking the firecoals out of their hair. Thar were fellers a-leaping the palings all around the house thar for a few minutes. They all got the p'int that Katty meant no foolery, though.
She made it plain that she had something worse to do to the next bunch that got to sneaking out under pear trees and scheming meanness. Les all go to Boston! Abbie and me they made be the head couple, and there were so many people scrouged into the circle that it got midnight on us fore we finished up with Boston. Saddle up girls and les go with them. Ear-lye in the morning. Out of the way, you'll get run over. Rights and lefts will make it better.
Won't we look pretty in the ballroom? Won't we look pretty in the ballroom Ear-lye in the morning? You know how at plays they'll all drap down on the floor when they're given out with games, and begin to sing, one after another? Well, when they asked John S. Combs to sing, he sung one that had for a long time been a favorite of mine, and I learnt it all from him, after that. Fore he started his song, he said he aimed to sing a pretty love song, since he reckoned that would be most to mine and Abbie's liking right now.
That made everybody laugh and all the girls turn rosy in the face. You know what song it is I'm talking about; that one that starts out, "I've been a foreign lander, full seven long years or more. I've conquered all my enemies, both all on land and sea; It is my dearest duel, your beauty has conquered me. That ship would burst asunder if I prove false to thee. If ever I prove false my love, the elements will turn. The fire will freeze to ice, my love, the sea will rage and bum. Don't you remember Queen Ellen, all in her flowery reign.
Her beauty and behavior, none with her could compare. But you my dearest darling, are more divinely fair. I'd sing so clear in the morning in the beautiful month of June. I wish I was ten thousand mile, all on some lonesome shore. Or among the rocky mountains, where the wild beasts howl and roar. The lark, the lilly owl, the eagle, and the little swallow too, I would give them all, my dearest love, if I was married to you.
I hain't thought of that shivaree night in many a long year now, and still and all it's like it just now happened. Fifty year ago, fifty year, little doney-gal. What do you think of that? Granny Katty said one more song, or game, whichever we would choose. Well, you know a game can alius outlast a song, don't matter how many verses a song has.
We'uz all feeling lovey anyhow after all the sweet singing, so we played a kissing game, and Granny she j'ined in. Fact of the matter I believe she was the one that led off "Maria. Guess she's gone where I can't go. Yonder she comes and howdy-do! Take a sweet kiss and pass on through! Did you think that night—thirteen young uns raised up grown! Reckon we done our share for this old world, Abbie.
Reckon we ought to be thankful to the good Lord that we're still alive after fifty years to tell the tale! What was the occasion that prompted the children to find out about Mom and Dad's courtship? Describe Abbie's first meeting with Balis. When Abbie and Balis were married, they were given an infare and a shivaree. An infare is a wedding supper, and a shivaree is a mock serenade with kettles, pots, and horns.
What marriage customs do we have today that may have evolved from these two customs? According to Cratis Williams' essay on mountain speech in Chapter 1, mountaineers have their own dialect just as New Englanders, Southerners, and many others have. Find dialectical expressions in this story which vary from standard English. Here are Sara's words about that day. Oh, she's going dressed so fine; Married girl, married girl, she wears just any kind.
Oh, she wears just any kind. Single girl, single girl, she goes to the store and buys. Oh, she goes to the store and buys; Married girl, married girl, she rocks the cradle and cries. Oh, she rocks the cradle and cries. Single girl, single girl, she's going where she please; Oh, she's going where she please; 56 Oral Tradition Married girl, married girl, baby on her knee. Oh, baby on her knee. Single Girl, Married Girl 1. Do you agree with the message of this song? Could the song apply to boys as well as girls?
Why or why not? What advantages do married girls have that the song fails to point out? It tells of the legendary steel-driving man who died with a hammer in his hand. John Henry went upon the mountain His hammer was striking fire. But the mountain was too tall, John Henry was too small So he laid down his hammer and he died.
Lord, Lord, Laid down his hammer and he died. John Henry went into the tunnel Had his captain by his side. The last words that John Henry said: Bring me a cool drink of water 'fore I die. Lord, Lord, Cool drink of water 'fore I die. Lord, Lord, Polly drove steel like a man. There never was bom in the United States Never such a steel-driving man. Lord, Lord, Never such a steel-driving man. Lord, Lord, John Henry told his captain: I want to go to bed. Lord, fix me a pallet, I want to lay down. Got a mighty roaring in my head. Lord, Lord, Mighty roaring in my head.
They took John Henry to the graveyard And they buried him under the sand. Now every locomotive comes a-roaring by Says: Yonder lies a steel-driving man. Lord, Lord, Yonder lies a steel-driving man. John Henry is referred to as a steel-driving man. What does this mean? What was John Henry's job? When he went upon the mountain, what did he do with his hammer?
What does this song say about dedication? Is this the main idea of the song? Be able to defend your answer with proof from the song. Then he became captain of the first regularly-scheduled steamboat out of Knoxville while he also advertised himself as "a craftsman in the metals generally. In , Harris published his Sut Lovingood's Yarns, narrated by an unpolished but good-natured Tennessee mountaineer. But Harris was more than a comedy writer. His stories poke fun at society's most respected institutions—marriage, the church, and the government. Sut Lovingood is not above exposing human nature's dark or weak side with his antics.
By making us laugh at ourselves and our society, Harris attempts to instruct as well as entertain. Old Skissim's Middle Boy When I war a littil over half grown, hed sprouted my tail feathers, an' wer beginnin tu crow, thar wer a livin in the neigh- 60 Oral Tradition borhood a dredful fat, mean, lazy boy, 'bout my age.
He wer the middil son ove a ole lark, name Skissim. He tinkered ontu ole clocks, an' spinin wheels, et lye hominy, an' exhortid at meetin fur a livin, while this middil boy ove hisen, did the sleepin fur the hole famurly. He cud beat a hog an' a hungry dorg eatin, an' then beat his eatin wif his sleepin, es bad es his eatin beat the eatin ove a rat, arter bein shut in a church, ur a snake in a jug wif no mouf tu hit. They waked him tu eat, an' then hed tu wake him agin tu make him quit eatin; waked him tu go tu the spring, an' waked him tu start back agin; waked him tu say his prayers, an' waked him tu stop sayin 'em.
In fac they wer allers a-wakin him, an' he wer allers a-goin tu sleep agin. His mam waked him wif the tea-kittil an' scaldin warter. Bof the buck-shot cracker an' the warter los tar vartu et las, an' they jis' gin him over tu onaindin sleepin, an' onmitigated hardness ove hed. Charley Dickins's son, the fat boy, mout been es ni kin tu him es a secund cuzzin, ef his mam wer a pow'ful wakeful 'oman.
I hedn't foun' out then, sartinly, that I wer a natrT bom dumd fool. I sorter suspishioned hit, but still hed hopes. So I wer fool enuf tu think I wer smart enuff tu break him frum snoozin all the time, so I lay wake ove nites fur a week, fixin the way tu du hit; an' that minds me tu tell yu what I thinks ove plannin an' studdyin: All pends, et las' on what yu dus an' how 3 m kerries yursef at the moment ove ackshun. Sarcumstances turn about pow'ful fas', an' all yu kin du is tu think jis' es fas es they kin turn, an' jis' es they turn, an' ef yu du this.
I'm dumed ef yu don't git out sumhow. Long studyin am like preparin a supply ove warter intu a wum hole barril, tu put out fire: But es I wer a-tellin yu, I studied out at las' a plan what I thort wud wake the devil; an' I sot in tu kerrin hit out. I'se alters heam that hit tuck a mons'us wise brat to know hits daddy, an' I thinks hit takes a wiser daddy tu know his own brats. Dad never wud speak sartin bout eny ove our famerly but me, an' he counted fur that by sayin I wer by a long shot tu cussed a fool tu belong tu enybody else, so I am a Lovingood.
My long laigs sumtimes sorter bothers me, but then mam tuck a pow'ful skeer et a san- hill crane a-sittin on a peel'd well-pole, an she out-run her shad- der thuty yards in cumin half a mile. I speck I owes my laigs an' speed tu that sarcumstance an' not tu eny fraud on mam's part. Well, they went tu nite meetin an' lef him in the kitchin fas' asleep, belevin tu fine him right thar when they cum back: They lef him sittin ontu a split-bottom cheer, plum asleep all over, even tu his ole hat. I tuck about thuty foot ove clothes line, an' tied him tu the cheer by his neck, body, an' arms, levin his laigs loose.
He looked sorter like the Lion in the spellin- book, when the rat wer a-cuttin a fish net off ove him. That wem't a sheer'd rat, wer he? I hed him safe now tu practize on, an' I sot in tu duin hit, sorter this way: I painted his face the culler ove a nigger coalbumer, scept a white ring roun his eyes; an' frum the comers ove his mouf, sorter downards, slouch- wise, I lef a white strip. Hit make his mouf look sorter like ontu a hoss track an' ni ontu es big. He wer a fine picter tu study, ef your mind wer fond ove skeery things.
He look't savidge es a sot steel trap, baited wif asnick, an wer jis' fit fur tresun, strater- jim, an' tu spile things. Tu this day, when I dreams ove the devil, dad, Passun Bullin, an' uther orful oppressive things, that infunel boy, es he look't that nite, am dumd intermitly mix't wif the hole ove em. I speck he's dead 'is the reason ove hit. I screw'd ontu each ove his years a par ove iron hanvices.
I learnt this fac' frum the cheer risin frum the flure, an' fallin agin jis' tu rise imejuntly a littil higher, an' sum souns, a mixtry ove snort, snore, grunt, an' groan, which he wer beginin tu isoo tolabil fas, an' gettin louder every bounce ove the cheer, an' becumin more like ontu a howl every pop. In the beginin ove his oneasines he dream'd ove wagin whip, nex' he dream'd ove a tea-kittil es big es a still, an lots ove bilin warter, an' nex he drempt ove bof ove 'em; an' now he wer a dreamin that the tea-kittil wer a steam ingine, a drivin the wag- gin whip, an' a cottin gin wif red hot saws fifteen hundred licks a minit, an' that he wer in the cottin hopper.
An' I did hit. The fust handful ur so gwine off help'd, wif the industry ove that energetic ole rat, the sarchin ove the red pepper, an' the permiskus scratchin roun ove the bugs, tu begin tu wake him sorter gradually, a littil faster nor light bread rises, an' a littil slower then a yeathquake wakes weazels. He fit by the light ove ten million sparks; he wer es active as a smut-mercheen in full blast, an' every grain ove wheat a spark. An' he wer a hol- lerin everything anybody ever did holler in dredful tribulashun ove spirit, even tu, "Now I lay me down tu sleep," an' "Gloree.
Now his big idear onder nise an' varigated hurtin wer tu fite, an' keep on a-fitin, ontil peace ove mine cum. I never seed sich keryins on in all my bom'd days. He made more fuss, hit more licks at more things, wer in more places, an' in more shapes, in a shorter time, then eny mortal auctioneer cud tell ef he hed es meny tungs es a baskit full ove buckils.
Every now an' then he'd gin his head a vishus, vigrus shake, an' the han-vices wud hit him fore an' arter, till his skull rattiled like ontu a ole gourd. The ole Skissim an' his tribe cum home frum meetin, an' hearin the onyeathly riot, thort sumbody hed opened a dorggery in thar kitchen an' that a neighborhood fite were gwine on, an' every feller's dorg along. They rushed in tu drive out the crowd, an' capter the whisky, an' a dumder more mis- fortinit mistake never wer make by a man, 'oman, an' a string ove fifteen brats, since ole Bill Shivers went fur a runnin threshin-meesheen tu smash hit, thinkin hit wer a big musick- box.
The ole hoss hisse'f imejuntly cum in contack wif a holesum knock down, what calm'd him intu sumthin mons'us like sleep, fur about a minit. Now a heap ove things ken happen in a minit, purtickerly ef that's sumbody who hes sot his hole soul tu the bisiness ove makinem happen. Hit wer so in that kitchen. Agin the ole feller cum tu, the ole 'oman wer knocked hed fust intu the meal-barril, whar she wer breathin more meal nur air, an' she wer snortin hit up over the aidges ove the barril like hit wer 64 Oral Tradition a fountin playin com meal.
The ol'est gal wer stum fus' in a soap-kittil, an' she wor a-makin suds outen sum ove hit. The nex' wun wer laingthwise belly down in the pot comer. The biggest boy wer whar the back-log orter been, ontu his all fours a-scratchin up all the embers an' ashes, a-tryin tu cum out frum thar. A littil gal, doll baby an' all, wer on the top shelf ove cup-board, amung the delf, a-screamin like a little steam whis- til.
The neighbors wer a-getherin in roun the nise an' rumpus, an' not a dum'd wun hed the least idear ove what wer wrong, sceptin ove me. I onderstood hit all, dum'd fool es I is. Tu 'scape frum bein 'spishioned, I sot in tu cuttin the cheer loose es I got chances, an' a-keepin outen the range ove that flyin fire shovil, fur hit wer still spreadin hurtin an' mischief on a per- petul moshun plan. Everybody hit totch fell, an' everything hit cum agin got grief. The tin buckits look'd like dmnk men's hats. Pails hed lef thar hoops, an' the delf war was in scrimpshuns.
He got wus, an' did his work faster an' better; he wer as crazy as a bed-bug, an' as savidge as a mad- dorg. I seed a-cummin, a ole widder, what wer a pow'ful pius turn'd pusson, in the same church wif ole Skissim, an' she wer the news-kerrier gineral ove the neighborhood. Folks sed that they hed a religus feelin fur each uther, what led tu meny love- feas, wif nobody at em but tharsefe, an' wer bof doin mouns' ous well, considerin the thorn in the flesh.
Sez she— "Oh, my soul! Du tell me what hes happened! Sez I, "I'll tell yu, es I knows yu won't speak ove it; fur ef hit gits out, hit mout make the pepil sorter think hard ove Mister Skissim. He cum home frum meetin plum crazy, talkin about the seventh cumandment, an' he's sot intu murderin hes folks wif a crowbar. He hes dun got his wife an' six ove the brats: Now I know by that he's turn'd dumed fool.