A traditional story closely based on the text in the book referred to below. My intention is to try to contact the publisher to see if I am breaking their copyright.
There was no rain. Day after day, month after month. The land was dying, the animals were dying, the people were dying.
The land is dying!
What have we done?
What must we do?
For many days the dancers danced but no rain came.
She Who is All Alone was a girl. Her mother and father, brothers and sisters and grand parents had all died. She was alone. So the people called her, She Who Is All Alone.
She Who is All Alone had a doll. She loved the doll. Her father and her mother had made the doll for her. The eyes were painted with the juice of berries, the trousers were decorated with beads, the doll’s hair was filled with the bright blue feathers of the bird who cries, Jay! Jay! Jay!
She Who is All Alone carried the doll everywhere and she often thought of her father and mother, her brothers and sisters and grandparents, now all shadows.
The shaman went to the top of the hill. He asked the Great Spirit what the people must do.
The shaman returned. “The Great Spirit says the people have been selfish! They have taken from the Earth and not given back to the Earth! The people must now give to the Earth their most precious possessions, burning them and giving the ashes to the four corners of the winds, North, South, East and West!
The people sang:
Not my new bow!
Not my new blanket!
Not my shining knife!
Not my new cooking pot!
Not my silent moccasins!
Not my beaded blouse!
She Who is All Alone knew that the Great Spirit wanted her doll. She waited until it was dark, took a burning stick from the fire and climbed to the top of the hill.
O Great Spirit!
Here is my doll!
It is all I have!
She Who is All Alone thought of her family and set fire to her doll. She felt the pain of the twisting heat and the sting of the smoke. At last the flames died. She waited silently beneath the sky of stars until the ashes were cold. Then she threw the ashes towards the homes of the four winds, to the North, the South, the East and the West.
She lay down and fell asleep.
In the morning, on waking, she found herself lying on blue flowers, as blue as the bird who sings, Jay! Jay! Jay!
The people saw the bright blue flowers on the hill and came to see them and found She Who is All Alone. And it began to rain and the people sang and danced. And the grass and leaves grew and the animals returned. The land lived again.
Now they call her, The One Who Loves Her People.
A relevant story for the situation we now have on this planet.
A few activities
1 Descriptive sentences as names: write one for yourself and for your friend.
2 Write a new chant listing the things you do not want to sacrifice.
3 Describe your most precious object. Would you be willing to sacrifice it?
4 Discuss different ways of sacrificing ie not only by fire. For example, you can sacrifice your time and energy by doing things for other people without reward.
This story is based on an old Indian legend from Texas. My source was: Legend of the Blue Bonnet, Tomie dePaola, Putman ISBN 0 399 20937-9
In my adaptation, I have tried to write in a style which I imagine is like the chanting and singing of stories in days gone by.