Friday, July 20, 2012

How the Moon Tricked the Sun and Won the Night ~ A Temuan Tale Retold

THE SUN AND THE MOON were colleagues and rivals in heaven. The Sun was excitable, showy and hotheaded while the Moon was cool and calm and fairly compassionate. They both had lots of children who cluttered the sky with a great clamor.
The Moon noticed that the Sun’s offspring were fiery and hotheaded like their father. They caused the Earth to be so hot and troubled that no crops would grow, and Manusia (humanity) was in serious danger of starvation. The Moon went into meditation and devised an ingenious plan: She hid all her children on her dark side and began to bulge visibly. The Sun came along and was amazed.
 “Hey, where’s your brood?” the Sun asked. “And how come you’re all alone?”
The Moon burped and answered with a broad grin: “I ate them and they were absolutely delicious!”
The Sun, not to be outdone, immediately followed suit and devoured his children, every last one of them, until he too shone alone in the sky. Whereupon the Moon laughed and brought her little ones out from hiding and sent them out to play all over the night sky, where they turned into Stars. 

The Sun was furious but it was too late. He was all alone now and incapable of burning up the Earth with his hot temper.

And every Night, the Earth would cool down enough for crops to grow and Manusia flourished from then on, thanks to the Moon’s cleverness and kindness.

[From Tanah Tujuh ~ Close Encounters with the Temuan Mythos, Silverfishbooks 2007]