6 THE STORY OF THE HERO MAKOMA
So terrible was the stroke that Chi-gwisa-miti shrivelled up as the other giants had done; and when he had got back his breath he begged Makoma to take him as his servant. ' For,' said he, 'it is honourable to serve a man so great as thou.'
Makoma, after placing him in his sack, proceeded upon his journey, and travelling for many days he at last reached a country so barren and rocky that not a single living thing grew upon it — everywhere reigned grim desolation. And in the midst of this dead region he found a man eating fire.
'What are you doing?' demanded Makoma.
'I am eating fire,' answered the man, laughing; 'and my name is Chi-idea-mdto, for I am the Same-spirit, and can waste and destroy what I like.'
'You are wrong,' said Makoma; 'for lam Makoma, who is "greater" than you — and you cannot destroy me!'
The fire-eater laughed again, and blew a flame at Makoma. But the hero sprang behind a rock — just in time, for the ground upon which he had been standing was turned to molten glass, like an overbaked pot, by the heat of the flame-spirit's breath.
Then the hero flung his iron hammer at Chi-idea-mdto, and, striking him, it knocked him helpless; so Mak6ma placed him in the sack, Woro-ndwu, with the other great men that he had overcome.
And now, truly, Makoma was a very great hero; for he had the strength to make hills, the industry to lead rivers over dry wastes, foresight and wisdom in planting trees, and the power of producing fire when he wished.
Wandering on he arrived one day at a great plain, well watered and full of game; and in the very middle of it, close to a large river, was a grassy spot, very pleasant to make a home upon.
Mak6ma was so delighted with the little meadow