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#358: Haitian Folktalks: Author follows up
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
>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