Anansi and the Old Lady's Field

An old lady had a field guarded by a watchman, and she put a curse on the field: if the watchman ate the crop, he died.
Anansi invited the watchman to breakfast, and he sent his son Tacoomah to steal the lady's crops to feed to him.
The watchman was suspicious and refused to eat.
"Then play your fiddle!" said Anansi. He knew the lady would dance while the fiddle played.
The watchman played.
"More!" shouted Anansi. "More! More!"
While the watchman played the lady danced, and she fell down dead from all the dancing, so Anansi got the field.

Inspired byJamaican Song and Story by Walter Jekyll
Notes: This is story 16 in the book. The different pieces of this story are not fully motivated; the watchman is an old-witch, and it's not clear whether he knows the effect his music has on the lady. There is a much more detailed and clear version in Berry's book: Anancy and the Hide-Away Garden. In this version, guard belongs to the Old Witch. In Berry's version, the gardener eats the food from the garden and he dies, and the playing is done by birds who are Anansi's partners in the plot; they know how to imitate the gardener's flute-playing.

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