From the Navaho Age of Gods

In the Age of Gods: First Man said upon coming home one day: "Over to the east, at the foot of the mesa, there are two different kinds of grass. Their ripening seeds are plentiful." So First Woman and the girl went down to gather the seeds. But when they got there they began to think of the monsters who roamed about the country and became frightened. Looking about them carefully they hurriedly gathered only one kind of seed before they ran back to their home. When they reached their hogan the girl said: "Mother, I want. to go back and collect the seeds from the other grass." First Woman said: "No, daughter, you can not go there alone. Some monster might catch you." But the girl insisted. She promised to be careful and to look out for herself.

note. Two kinds of grasses with edible seeds. These are mountain grasses, tlo'tso and tlo'tsosi, tlo'dahikhali and ndid lidi. Tlo dei is Chenopodium, seeds-falling grass. This is what is called hard seed grass, also pigweed.

After the request was made four times the old woman let her go, warning her to have great care.

The maiden went down the mesa as fast as she could and was soon busy gathering seeds from the grass. All of a sudden she heard something behind her. Looking around she saw a great white horse with black eyes. He, had a long white mane, and he pranced above the ground not on the earth itself. She saw that the bridle was white too, and that the saddle was white. And there was a young man sitting on the horse. The young man's moccasins and leggings and clothing were all white. All was as for a bride.

The holy rider spoke: "You lay towards me each morning until noon. I am he whom you faced. When I am half over the center of the earth you go to the spring. Your wish could not have two meanings." He continued:

Go home and tell your father to build a brush hogan to the south of your home. Make ready a meal out of the seeds of the grasses that you have gathered. Put this meal into a white bead basket. Have the pollen from a pair of blue birds (pollen which has been sprinkled over them), and use this pollen to draw a line from east to west across the basket on top of the meal. Turn the hand and make a line from north to south, and a line must be drawn around the outer edge of the basket. Set the basket inside the brush hogan. You and your father must sit there late into the night. He will then go home to his wife and you must stay there alone.

When the White Bead Girl returned home she told her mother of all that she had seen and all that she had heard. That night when First Man came home his wife, told him what the girl had related. First Man said: "I do not believe this thing. We are very poor. Why should we be visited by a Holy Being? I cannot believe what you tell me."

Now when the girl told her mother about her experience First Woman asked if she had acted according to this Holy One's directions each day. The maiden had said: "Yes." So the woman told her husband that indeed it was all true, and that he must go and prepare the brush shelter and not argue. When all was ready First Man took the white bead basket filled with the meal, and he and his foster-daughter went into the brush shelter and sat there.

They sat there late into the night, then First Man went home to his wife and left the maiden there alone. The White Bead Girl returned early in the morning, and First Man asked her at once: "Who came last night"? The girl said: "No one came." First Man turned to his wife, "Did I not tell you that it is all a lie," he said. But the girl said: "Wait, I thought that I heard someone, and this morning I found just one track, and some of the meal, that towards the east, had been taken." So First Man went with his daughter to the brush hogan and he saw the one track, and also, that the meal towards the east in the basket was gone.

That night they prepared another basket of meal, and again First Man took his daughter to the brush shelter, and again they sat there late into the night. He left the maiden there alone. In the morning the girl returned to the home and said: "There are two tracks of a man there now. The meal in the south of the basket is gone."

On the third night the same thing happened. In the morning when the maiden returned First Man asked: "Who came?" And the girl said: "No one came." Then First Man became angry. "I told you that this thing is all a lie," he said. But the maiden answered: "But Father, there are three tracks, and the meal towards the west is gone. And I thought that someone touched me last night."

The fourth night they went to the brush shelter as before taking with them fresh meal in the basket. They sat late into the night, then First Man returned to his wife. When the girl entered the home in the early morning her father asked: "Who came?" And the girl answered: "No one." First Man was very angry and insisted that it was all a lie. "But father," said the White Bead Maiden, "The meal towards the north is gone, and there are four tracks. I thought that I was moved by someone, and I was all wet when I awakened."

Now after the maiden was visited the fourth time by the Holy Being she lived with her foster parents for 4 days as they had always lived. But at the end of the fourth day the young woman said: "Mother, something moves within me." First Woman answered: "Daughter, that must be your baby moving." (And it is at the end of the fourth month that a woman feels life.) After 5 more days had passed twin boys were born to the White Bead Woman. (It is so that a woman bears a child in the ninth month.)

Later, much later, First Man and First Woman were sent farther east, farther towards the east than where the Sun dwells.