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“Dismantling of Baapúxtahachkash”

Graphite, Ink, inkjet, crayon on 1897 MT Ledger Paper




The small birds dispersed pieces of the defeated water monsters to every corner of the earth. The warrior who had vanquished the beasts summoned his four medicine arrows and removed the hot stones from the monsters' mouths. The Baapúxtahachkash were dead, and their corpses fed all the birds of the land. With the monsters gone, the Thunderbird fledglings could grow to maturity without fear of molestation.

As a reward for his bravery, the Thunderbirds transformed the warrior into a bald eagle at his request, adorning his wing feathers with arrowhead shapes as a reminder of his past. After many years and many more aquatic monsters defeated, the man sat by the banks of the Elk(Yellowstone)River in Montana, grooming his feathers. As he picked through the insects with his beak, he remembered his life as a human and felt a sense of nostalgia. Eventually, a group of powerful water beings captured the eagle man and built him a sweat lodge. They subjected him to intense heat until he revealed his proper form.

"We do not wish to kill you, only to make you suffer, for you have already killed too many of our kind. You are a person of the land; go home, return to your people and become human again."

Thus, the powerful beings released him. Exiting the sweat lodge, he once again became human. His tribe was nearby, and he returned to them.

“Dismantling of Baapúxtahachkash”

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