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Main > Canada folktales > Fairy tale "How Glooskap Made the Birds"

How Glooskap Made the Birds

Once upon a time long before the white men came to Canada there lived a wicked giant who caused great trouble and sorrow wherever he went. Men called him Wolf-Wind. Where he was born no man knows, but his home was in the Cave of the Winds, far in the north country in the Night-Night Land, and there men knew he was hiding on calm days when the sun was hot and the sea was still, and on quiet nights when not a leaf or a flower or a blade of grass was stirring. But whenever he appeared, the great trees cracked in fear and the little trees trembled and the flowers bent their heads close to the earth, trying to hide from his presence. Often he came upon them without warning and with little sign of his coming. And then the corn fell flat never to rise again, and tall trees crashed in the forest, and the flowers dropped dead because of their terror; and often the great waters grew white and moaned or screamed loudly or dashed themselves against the rocks trying to escape from Wolf-Wind. And in the darkness of the night when Wolf-Wind howled, there was great fear upon all the earth.

It happened once in those old times that Wolf-Wind was in a great rage, and he went forth to kill and devour all who dared to come in his path. It chanced in that time that many Indian families were living near the sea. The men and women were fishing far off the coast. They were catching fish to make food for the winter. They went very far away in small canoes, for the sea had long been still and they thought there was no danger. The little children were alone on shore. Suddenly as the sun went down, without a sign of his coming, out of the north came Wolf-Wind in his great rage looking for prey, and roaring loudly as he came. "I am Wolf-Wind, the giant," he howled, "cross not my path, for I will kill all the people I meet, and eat them all up." His anger only grew as he stalked along, and he splashed and tossed the waters aside in his fury as he came down upon the fishermen and fisher-women far out to sea.

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