Stonework is published by Houghton College, a Christian liberal arts college located in New York’s rural Genesee Valley. Stonework seeks a diverse mix of mature and emerging voices in fellowship with the evangelical tradition. Published twice a year, the journal reflects the arts community at Houghton College where excellence in music, writing, and the visual arts has long been a distinctive.

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  • Issue 6
    Poetry by Paul Willis and Thom Satterlee. Fiction and interview with Lori Huth. Essay by James Wardwell, and student poets from Christian campuses.
  • Issue 5
    Poetry by Susanna Childress and Debra Rienstra. Fiction excerpt by Emilie Griffin. Art from Houghton's 2007 presidential inauguration and a forum on women writing.
  • Issue 4
    Matthew Roth--new poems. Diane Glancy--from One of Us and an interview. John Tatter-on gardens and poetry. The Landscapes of John Rhett. Stephen Woolsey--on the poetry of Jack Clemo. James Wardwell--on Herrick.
  • Issue 3
    Poetry by Julia Kasdorf, Robert Siegel and Sandra Duguid. Fiction by Tom Noyes. The portraits of Alieen Ortlip Shea. An anthology of Australian Poets
  • Issue 2
    Thom Satterlee - Poems from Burning Wycliff with an appreciation by David Perkins. Alison Gresik - new fiction and an interview. James Zoller - Poems from Living on the Floodplain.
  • Issue 1
    Luci Shaw — new poems with an appreciation by Eugene H. Peterson & Hugh Cook — new fiction and an interview

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Hare Defeats the Elephant

Once long ago a certain elephant went hunting in the forest. There in the forest her foot was pierced by a thorn. So she limped along until finally she arrived at the compound of the hare. When she arrived, she said to the hare, “Come help me, my child. Take out the thorn which prevents me from walking home.”
The hare replied, “Good. Wait while I get another thorn to take out the first one.”
She ran into the house and whispered to her children to put the cooking pot on the fire. Then she sharpened the knife and brought it out together with a fish spear. As she cut the meat from the foot of the elephant, she said to the children, “Take this and throw it away in the forest. It stinks very much.”
To the elephant she said, “Why did this thorn pierce you in such a bad way?”
The children ran with this meat and put it in the cooking pot and they kept on doing this until the pot was completely full of meat. Then the hare said to the elephant, “It is finished my sister. The thorn is out.”
The elephant limped on until she arrived at home. The whole leg was infected and swollen up. When the other elephants asked about it, she said it had been pierced by a thorn and the hare had only made it worse. After a while the elephant died.
After she died, the other elephants blamed the death of their woman on the hare. So they gathered together to go to avenge the elephant and kill the hare. While they were preparing, another person ran and came and told the hare, “You are still here? The elephants say you killed their woman. Now they are gathering to come to kill you.”
When the hare heard this, she went to the animals that were her friends and asked for their help, but they all refused completely. So the hare said, “Death is only once. Let them come.” Then she went out and brought back three gourds. In the first gourd she put tsetse flies. In the second she put bees, and in the last she put fleas.
In a little while she saw the elephants coming with many spears. She let them come and while they were still far away, she sent out the tsetse flies. The tsetse flies stung the elephants over and over, but were finally defeated. The hare let the elephants come until they were a little closer and then sent out the bees. The bees stung the elephants over and over, but eventually they stopped stinging and the elephants kept coming.
When the elephants were nearing the compound, the hare released the fleas. The fleas immediately attacked the elephants. The fleas entered the eyes and ears of the elephants. The elephants started crying and calling to each other. “Help me. Help me with the one in my trunk. Help me with the one in my anus.” The fleas kept on attacking them until finally the elephants ran away. The hare won the battle.
The Murle people say that is why elephants do not like fleas up until the present day.


Reprinted with permission of the translator, Jonathan E. Arensen from Mice Are Men (International Museum of Cultures, 1992) copyright by The summer Insstitute of Linguistics, Inc., 1992