This story is the Cherokee tribe's account of how the Sun came into being. The Cherokee are an American Indian tribe located mainly in the states of Tennessee and North Carolina.
In the beginning there was complete darkness and people were forced to feel their way around, bumping into each other quite often. The mighty Fox said that the people on the other side of the world had light and lots of it but were just too greedy to share it. The animals got together and decided to send Possum to get a piece of the light.
Possum went to steal a little piece of the light. He found the Sun upon a branch of a tree just as bright as fox had said. He took a tiny piece of the Sun and tried to hide it under the fur of his tail but the heat of the Sun burned all the fur off of his tail. From that point on possums have had bald tails.
The animals sent Buzzard next. Buzzard tried to hide a piece of Sun in his head feathers but the Sun burnt them to a crisp so that from then on buzzards have had bald heads.
Grandmother Spider tried next. She however was smarter and learned from the mistakes of the other two animals. She fashioned a clay bowl and then spun a web across the sky reaching to the other side of the world. From there she snatched up the entire Sun and hung it in her web for all to use. The Cherokee say that the web Grandmother Spider spun is the Milky Way.
©Copyright 1998 Elizabeth
Beckett, Holly Bernitt, and Vishwa Chandra.