HOW ANANSI BECAME THE STORY TELLER
Note: I took the basic story and rewrote it – Pauline Gallagher
I have a new ebook coming out called “Ranger Jabari and the African Animals.” Jabari and his two ranger friends are travelling the Serengeti Plains to look for sick animals and to prevent poaching.
During rest breaks and around the nightly campfire, Ranger Jabari is asked to tell African folk tales. Here is one called “How Anansi Became the Story Teller.” This ebook should be on the shelves before or just after Christmas, 201
Once there were NO stories in the world. The Sky-Go, Nyame, owned them all.
The trickster spider, Anansi, knew that he would have great power if he owned the stories. He could tell the stories and humans would give me food, money and precious gems.
“How much money do you want for the stories?” asked Anansi, trying not to be too interested. “I don’t have much money?”
“Ha! Ha!” thundered the Sky-God, Nyame. “I don’t want money. What would I do with it up here in the sky? I want to send you on challenging adventures. I want to see you fight and sweat and struggle.”
“What would you have me do? O, great one. O, magnificent one!”
“Don’t try to flatter me, Anansi. I know you are the trickster!”
Anansi hid his face to show that he was sorry, but he wasn’t sorry at all.
He wanted to trick the Sky-God and anyone he met.
Nyame watched Anansi and decided to put great challenges his way. Nyame hoped that the trickster would fail and he would still keep the stories.
“Here is a list, Anansi. Bring back Onini the Python, Osebo the Leopard, and the Mboro Hornet.”
Anansi was worried and said to himself, “I will either be strangled, eaten or strung to death.”
Anansi listened to the Sky-God as he laughed and laughed until the laughter turned to thunder and it rained.
Anansi went under a big leaf to avoid the rain. He began to think of the stories and it gave him courage. He was the trickster and there were only three challenges. He would win!
Anansi went to where the Python lived.
He spoke out loud, “Creatures of the forest, I do nto think Python is as long as a palm tree. I will cut one down and we can measure him.”
Slowly, one by one birds, creatures and insects came out. Then, slithering up to Anansi came Python’s wife, Aso.”
She looked Anansi in the eye. “My husband is longer than any palm tree.”
The Python appeared, he was really, really long.
He agreed to lie along the fallen palm tree. Anansi shook his head. “Python you cannot make yourself completely straight, so it is hard for me to measure you. Let me straighten you out by tying you to the palm tree.”
Python agreed and the Python was easily captured. The villagers watching were scared of Anansi’s magic tricks and so they carried off the Python on the tree to where the Sky-God would appear.
“One down – two to go!” Anansi said to himself.
Anansi heard the sound of the leopard. He dug a deep hole and the leopard fell in. Anansi made himself larger than the leopard. He offered his web to lift leopard out of the hole. Leopard was now stuck in Anansi’s webs and the trickster brought him to where the villagers had put the Python on the pole.
“Two down – one to go!” laughed Anansi.
To catch the hornets, Anansi had to trick them into thinking that it was raining. He filled a big calabash with water.
“It’s raining, “ Anansi shouted as he held a banana leaf over his head and poured water. Nothing happened. Anansi then poured water over the hornet’s nest and yelled, “It’s raining, it’s raining!” The hornet came crawling out of their flooded nest. They shook the water off themselves and looked stunned.
“Hornets, come and crawl into the empty calabash. I can give you this as a gift. This can be your dry new home.”
When the last hornet was in the calabash, Anansi sealed the opening.
“Three done – none to go!” cheered Anansi.
When Nyame, the Sky-God awoke early the next morning. He heard Anansi calling. Nyame pushed the clouds apart and looked at the captured Python, Leopard and Hornets.
Before giving Anansi all the stories, the Sky-God warned him, “Anansi be careful of the words you use in the stories. They can bring love or hate and war or peace.”
Look at for my coming ebook called “Jabari and the African Animals.”