Long ago, it is said, there was a very beautiful mallard girl. Many men wanted to marry her, but all in vain. Raven, behaving in his usual manner, went to work. He made clothing of grass and plastered it well with mud. As he was nicely dressed, he appeared to be a big chief, and in his important chief's disguise, he went to the mallard girl's father, so they say. "I come from far away; I am a great chief, and having heard a great deal about your daughter, I have done this because I wish to marry her." The father didn't like it, but since the chief seemed so fine, he gave his daughter in marriage.
She started back with him, so they say. He had not paddled far when it began to rain. The mud became wet and dissolved. "It's nothing," he said, but through the grass his black feathers became visible here and there. She was sitting behind him and he didn't know what she was doing. She sewed his coat-tails to the canoe.
"Let me get out for a little bit," she said. "No," he said, but she insisted. After he had tied a fairly long rope to her, she got out of the boat and left him. She climbed up the bank out of sight. There was a spruce tree there, and she quickly tied the rope to it and set off running back home.
"Enough!" he said, but there was not a sound in answer to him, so he tugged on the rope, but without result. "What's doing on?" he suddenly thought. "Hurry up, I'm telling you!" he said, and shouted, but once more there was no answer. He became furious and jumped up in anger, but his coattails were sewn down and he fell abruptly back into the canoe on his rump. Since the canoe was quite frail, he broke a hole right through it with his rump.
With difficulty, he caulked the canoe with pitch and paddled back down river. When he landed, someone said to him, "What have you done to your canoe?" Without a sign of laughter, he said, "I was getting a little fish for my starving children when I did that, that's what happened."