Eel Gambles His Bones Away


The first Native American Folklore story I ever heard, was told to my Kindergarten class at Margaret Keating School. It was a simple tale of caution and morality.

It was read to us by Jon Larson’s mother, Juanita, who had jus’ written and illustrated a book on Yurok, Kurok and Hupa myths and Legends.  I was hooked from thereon.

“Eel and Salmon liked to gamble. The wager was their bones.  Eel began to lose — but he believed he could win, so he kept betting until he lost everything. That’s why Eel has so few bones and Salmon has so many.”

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