The Creation of the Sea

Long ago, when the earth was young and dry, there was a village at the top of a high cliff. Before this cliff there was a long, wide valley, thrice as deep as the cliff was tall. There was a man in this village of which all other men were jealous, for this man was handsome as any of the gods, and girls from other villages came seeking to be his.

For years the man turned down the eager women for he realized they only loved his looks.

One night the lonely man walked through his village out toward the cliff. He saw a beautiful maiden sitting at the peak, singing. He quieted his footsteps so as to listen to the words she sang.

While he listened the moon rose higher and higher in the sky, and he fell more and more in love; this woman sang about him, not for his face, but who he was. They had grown up in the village together and had come to know each other as friends, but nothing more, or so he had thought.

He stepped into moonlight, and called her name. At that moment two things happened. She spun around, gasping.

"You heard?"

"Of course, but why did you not tell me how you felt?"

While this was going on the Moon was scheming, for when the man had stepped into her light, she also had fallen in love with him. Kind as she was, the Moon was willing to do anything to get him. Her thoughts grew colder and more despicable as the man led the woman back into the village. She heard them planning a wedding for tomorrow.

'No!' she thought, 'He must be mine!'

While the man slept, the Moon appeared to him in a dream as a beautiful maiden with long, white hair and beautiful features to match his own. She whispered secret words in his ear and his heart split in two; half for this maid with white hair, half for the woman who loved who he was. In the morning the man rejected his dream and went to his love. They breakfasted together and announced their betrothal to the village. That afternoon, while the Moon watched, helpless in the day, the man and woman preformed the marriage celebration. The Moon closed her eyes as they each tied an ancestor's bone around the others neck with a small red cord, symbolizing the joining of the families. The feast lasted until after dark.

The next two nights were confusing for the man as; again, he was visited by the Moon in his dreams. On the third night the Moon called the man out to the cliff and he rose from his bed, still asleep, and walked out to the precipice. Without the warmth of her husband the woman awoke and searched around for him. She neared the edge of the village and stopped, a horrible scene taking place before her eyes; her man was embracing a beautiful white haired woman! In outrage the woman grabbed a spear leaning on the tent next to her and ran to the figures on the cliff.

The Moon smiled to herself; she had the man all to herself, but her smile faded for at that moment a long cry echoed over into the valley. As she turned, a spear pierced through the man.

The Moon could never really leave the heavens and so the figure beside the man on cliff did not really exist.

When both women saw that the spear had pierced the man and not the beautiful woman beside him, they both let out twin cries of anguish. The man finally awoke just to topple over the cliff, the spear jutting out of his chest. The Moon and the woman cried long and hard, so long and hard that the valley filled to the cliff with salt water.

The body of the man is preserved at the bottom of this wide expanse of salt water and each night the Moon is forced to look at the lovely man she killed with her own greed. The Moon's deep breaths, for she is still mourning the man, cause the waters to ebb and flow, and her constant tears keep the valley filled.