The Cracked Pot


The Cracked Pot

An Indian Folktale

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A water-bearer fills two large clay pots with water from the river many times every day to bring water to the house of his master.  The pots hang by a rope from either side of a wooden yoke across his shoulders.  The pot on one side of the yoke has a crack in it that […]

The Lion and the Beetle

As retold by S.E. Schlosser

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Lion was very proud and very vain.  He loved to stomp around the savannah, roaring and growling whenever he saw his animal subjects – Giraffe or Hyena or Elephant or Gazelle or Ape – to show what a mighty Lion he was. “I am a Very Mighty King!” he roared.  And his subjects all bowed low […]

Guyo’s Feast

An Indonesian folk tale as retold by Sydney Solis

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Once there was a man named Guyo who lived in a little wooden hut by a river. One day he heard that a rich neighbor was having a big feast and had invited everyone in the countryside to attend. Guyo dressed himself in his finest clothing. Then he set out in his canoe and began […]

The Enchanted Camel

as told by Syrian refugee Mahmoud Fares, 30 years old, from Khan el Sheikh Camp 7 who currently resides in Sidon, Lebanon

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Once upon a time there was a woodcutter who made a living from cutting wood in the forest. One day he went there to collect wood and found a big log too heavy for him to carry on his own. He looked to the right and then to the left and saw a camel who […]

The Toy Maker – A December Tale for Tandem Telling

Written by Grandbear of Jeffco Spellbinders

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PEARL: Grandbear, will you tell me another story? GB: Sure, How about one from the Winter Solstice celebrations of the animals that live around my cousin’s ranch in Montana? The deer, for example, like to tell stories for eight nights in a row. One story is about their distant cousins, the reindeer, who lived way […]

The Origin of the Night Sky

a tale from the Cochiti Pueblo in northern New Mexico

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A long time ago, after the great flood, the people emerged from the Underworld. The woman who was called Our Mother gathered the people together and instructed them on where they should go to make their new home. This woman was called Our Mother because no one knew of anyone who was older than her. […]

The Carp and the Painter

A tale from Japan

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— It is unknown how much of this tale is true.  What is known to be true is that during the years 1750 to 1760 there lived in Kyoto a great painter named Okyo-Maruyama Okyo. His paintings were such as to fetch high prices even in those days. Okyo had not only many admirers in […]

The Brahmin, the Tiger and the Six Judges

A Tale from India

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Once upon a time, a Brahmin, who was walking along the road, came upon an iron cage, in which a great Tiger had been shut up by the villagers who caught him. As the Brahmin passed by, the Tiger called out and said to him, “Brother Brahmin, brother Brahmin, have pity on me, and let […]

The Ogre Who Played Pick-up Sticks

Mary Ann Janson

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Enjoy listening to this great audio recording by Mesa County Spellbinders storyteller Mary Ann Janson.

The Frog Princess

Unknown Author

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Once long ago there was a peasant woman who had three sons. Though they were peasants they were well off, for the soil on which they lived was fruitful, and yielded rich crops. One day the sons told their mother they wished to get married. “Do as you like”, said their mother, “but see that […]

The Three Laughs

Jewish (Hasidic - Poland)

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When the Baal Shem Tov laughs three times during the Sabbath meal, his disciples ask him to explain. He was inspired by an elderly bookbinder who sang and danced on the Sabbath in celebration of his many years of marriage. The man is recognized for celebrating his true love for his wife, even if on […]

Martha and the Meadowlark

Lev Ropes

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The Legend of the Dipper

if you have information about the origin of this tale, please let us know

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There was once a little girl who had a dear mother, and they lived, quite alone, in a little house in the woods. They were always very happy, but one day the mother grew so ill that it seemed as if she could never be strong and well again. “I must have a drink of […]

Why Dogs Chase Cats

A Virginia Folktale as retold by S.E. Schlosser on

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Once long ago, Dog was married to Cat. They were happy together, but every night when Dog came home from work, Cat said she was too sick to make him dinner. Dog was patient with this talk for a while, but he soon got mighty tired of fixing dinner for them both after a hard […]

The Leprechaun’s Gold

This classic Irish tale goes by many names including The Leprechaun and the Red Scarf

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A story for St. Patrick’s Day as retold by Dale Pepin ‘TWAS a fine sunny day at harvest time when young Seamus O’Donnell, walking along the road, heard a tapping sound.  Peering over the hedge, he saw a tiny man in a little leather apron, mending a little shoe. “Well, well, well!” said Seamus to […]

Rich Woman, Poor Woman

A Tale from Flanders

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On a cold winter night, long ago, Mars took a walk along with his favorite bird on earth. Towards nightfall he let the bird knocked at a rich peasant’s door. The farmer’s wife was busy making pancakes in her cozy kitchen. Her little chubby baby was watching her as she poured the batter into the […]

The Ghost Who Was Afraid of Being Bagged

A humorous ghost story from Bengal

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Once on a time there lived a barber who had a wife. They did not live happily together, as the wife always complained that she had not enough to eat. Many were the curtain lectures which were inflicted upon the poor barber. The wife used often to say to her mate, “If you had not […]

The Aged Mother

A Japanese folk tale

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Long, long ago there lived at the foot of the mountain a poor farmer and his aged, widowed mother. They owned a bit of land which supplied them with food. They were humble, peaceful and happy. Shinano was governed by a despotic leader who, though a warrior, had a great and cowardly shrinking from anything suggestive […]

The Magic Paint Brush

A Chinese folk tale

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Once upon a time, there was a young man called Ma Liang. He was poor and kind and liked drawing so much that he drew pictures everywhere. One night, he dreamed that an old man gave him a magic paintbrush and asked him to use it to help poor people. When he woke up, he […]

Hab el Loz

as told by Syrian refugee Samir Amer, aged 47 from Soueidaa, Sweimry, currently residing in Al Maslakh

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A woman had two daughters who were not particularly good looking, and one day as she was sitting on the front porch breaking almond shells she prayed to God, “If you bless me with a third daughter please make her beautiful and I promise to call her Hab el Loz, like these wonderful almonds.” After […]

Conquering Fear

A folk tale found in many parts of the world

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Once upon a time, there lived a boy who was so shy and fearful of the world around him that his family called him Miobe, frightened one. “Why do you call me that?” the boy asked his grandfather. The old man laughed. “Because you are afraid,” he answered. The boy’s grandmother, his mother, his father […]

An African American Folktale as Retold by S.E. Schlosser One fine morning, Brer Fox decided to plant him a patch of goober peas. He set to with a will and before you know it, he had raked and hoed out a beautiful patch of ground and he put in a fine planting of peas. It […]

Mink and the Sun

An eclipse legend of the Kwakiutl of the Pacific Northwest as retold by Eldrbarry

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The name of the Mink in the Kwakiutl language means “Made-Like-The-Sun”. Mink’s mother, Sea Lion, as a young maiden, liked to sit in a rock in the sea, basking in the warm sun. When she found out she was going to have a baby, her parents questioned her about it. They asked her who the […]

Great Joy

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A Buddhist Tale from India Once, long ago, a poor brahmin was given an ox calf in repayment for a debt. The calf was the Buddha in an earlier birth. The brahmin delighted in the tiny creature and cared for it well. And the ox, with the man’s care, grew and grew. When fully grown […]

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