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#358: Haitian Folktalks: Author follows up


Dear John:

I am the author of When Night Falls, Kric! Krac!  Soon you will be able to 
view my work at netLibrary.com.  My publisher is in the process of 
contracting this distributor of electronic books.  The book is in English 
with a Creole flavor to the point that the editor did not want to change my 
Haitian accent in the stories.

>From Bouki and the calf
"Good morning, Uncle Bouki," said the calf as he passed by.  "Good morning, 
my nephew," said Bouki.  "Why don't you come and shake hands with your 
uncle?"  Bouki intended to grab the calf, s hoof, drag him inside the house, 
and cut him into pieces for the day's meals.  
"Oh no, my Uncle," said the calf.  "My mother sent me to the market.  She 
said I must come back in a hurry."
"You are always in a hurry," said Bouki.  "Why don't you tell me where you 
live?  One of this night, when you are not so busy, I will come to see you."  
Oh! the calf was frightened for a minute.  But he was a smart calf.  He lied 
to Bouki.  He said, "I live under the Mapou tree, where Malfini died of 
yellow fever."

>From Tonton Makout (The Bogeyman)
Long time ago, the bogeyman was an imaginary creature, used to scare children 
into good behavior.  In Haiti, the bogeyman is called tonton makout.  What is 
a tonton makout?  Tonton means uncle, and makout is a type of big bag.  So 
the name for bogeyman, tonton makout, is actually "uncle bag."  
In large cities, such as Port-au-Prince and Cap-Haitien, the sound of the 
train, ouf-ouf, or the siren of the cruise boat, serif-serif, are terrifying 
sounds for children.  When such sounds are heard, the grown-ups say, "That's 
the tonton makout."
Although the tonton makout is a myth, every child's mind has the power to 
create his or her own imaginary, scary creature.  And in every village, there 
is always someone who fits the description of a tonton makout.

There was in a village a very old man who slept under the bridge... 

In addition, many proverbs are used in the book and you can find a 
Kreyol-English glossary along with real Creole-Haitian recipes such as Griyo 
)Haitian Pork Dish, Marinad, Akra, soup joumou, Rice and Beans (Diri Kole ak 
Pwa: Literally, Rice stuck with Beans) Haitian Beignet (Benyen) Sweet Potato 
Pudding (pen Patat) and many more.

Hope that this information will help,


Liliane Nerette Louis