Ibonia is Tested

Now Ibonia went to Great Echo's house. When he got there, Great Echo was warming himself in the sun. Great Echo said, "Now, what man is burning me?
     Is it Male-Cat-with-Big-Nape?
     Is in Princess Like-a-Man?
     Is it Big Chameleon? --
          the one who butchers what he will not cook
          and cuts what is not eaten?
     Is it the Prince-Who-Does-Not-Mix-with-Others?"
     But Ibonia did not speak.
                         Great Echo said,
     "Here is Prince Beau-Regard,
          that thin and peaceable man
               who needs war to fatten him.
     If he made war today,
          he would be like a clod of earth,
     but if he does not fight,
          he is like a hair-dressing comb.
     He becomes plump when he swells with pride,
          he becomes thin when he bends."
And Ibonia said, "So much for Living Lady!" (80)
     "Where are you going now, Ibonia?" said Great Echo.
                         And Ibonia said,
     "No misfortune has struck me, Great Echo,
          but here is what makes me discontent: my marriage.
     For my wife has been stolen by calamity, by disaster.
          I will go to bring her back from Stone Man.
     I became betrothed when just conceived,
          I was married as a baby.
     If Joy-Giving Girl dies,
          I will not leave her in the earth;
     if she lives,
          I give her to no man." (81)
Then Great Echo answered in prophecies as usual. (82)     More Info
     "Go to that forest in the east,
          leading a pure red ox.
     Go into the forest.
          If swine bar your way, do not go on,
               but if sparrow hawks bar your way, then go on.
     All the trees in the forest will speak. They all will say,
           'I am Single Trunk,
               and Enough-to-Fill-the-Earth,
                    and Leafless Red.' But you answer them,
           'No, you are not. You are an impostor.'
When you and the ox are there, among the charms,
     a waterspout will come out of the water,
          but it will not speak. So you speak, and say,
If you are Single Trunk,
     and Enough-to-Fill-the-Earth,
          and Leafless Red,
then stop the wind,
     and overturn this ox with no rope,
          and light the fire to roast the ox.
     Then stretch out and fall on me,
               if you are of any use.'
When that is done," said Great Echo,
"and when all you have ordered is accomplished,
     then, Ibonia, go to the water's edge.
     As the sun is setting,
          dive into the water with your talismans.
     If till daylight you can stay under water without coming up, (83)
          then, Ibonia, you will have your wife.
     But if you cannot pass this test, then do no go,
          for you will not get her,
               and you will be killed by Stone Man."
     Then Ibonia set out, leading the ox with a pure red coat.
When he reached the entrance to the forest, he said,
     "If what I plan to do will not be good for me,
          let a hog rush upon me,
     but if it be only good for me,
          let a kestrel rush upon me."
               And just then a kestrel came in his way.
     When he entered the forest, the trees spoke.
     Some said, "I am Leafless Red,"
          and some said, "I am Enough-to-Fill-the-Earth,"
          and some said, "I am Single Trunk." (84)
                         And Ibonia said,
               "No, you are not. You are an impostor."
     And when Ibonia reached Leafless Red,
                    wind began to blow,
                    trees began to twist. Ibonia spoke, saying,
     "If you are Single Trunk,
          and Enough-to-Fill-the-Earth,
               and Leafless Red,
     then stop the wind,
          and overturn this ox with no rope,
               and light the fire to roast the ox.
     Then stretch out and fall on me,
     And if you are benign and auspicious for me,
          then I order you to stuff the ox
     with the leaves left over from your stretching."
And the leaves left over from the stretching filled the ox's belly.
                              He also said,
     "If you are benign and auspicious for me,
          may the leaves return where they were."
     And the charms accomplished everything Ibonia ordered. (85)
As the sun was going down, he too went down into the water, with his talismans. He managed to stay there until daybreak before he came up. Then he went back to Long-Standing.

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