Bunyip (page 2)
There are several traditional and legendary tales concerning Bunyips and their powers. According to one of them, these water creatures were involved in the great deluge. The story goes that a group of men apparently caught and imprisoned a small Bunyip, making its mother so angry she flooded the land until it covered everything. The humans that managed to escape were turned into black swans.
Another such tale tells of a man belonging to the Frog tribe (so called because of their frog hunting lifestyle) who went fishing with his wife. As night approached, she warned him to come back to the bank, concerned that a Bunyip might be near by. Sure enough, as the man reached the bank and threw the catch to his wife, he saw the long arm and claws of the Bunyip tighten around the woman's arm and drag her into the swamp.
Exhausted, the Frog-man courageously tried to track them, but to no avail as the Bunyip leaves no trail. Knowing that the Bunyip had a taste for frogs, the man then tied several of these amphibians to his spear, in the hope the beast would hear their racket and come for them. Not surprisingly, the Bunyip showed up with the Frog-man's wife tagging along, although with empty glazed eyes, just like a zombie. She was under the Bunyip's spell. Desperate, the man spears the beast deep in its belly, which then retreats with the woman along, still under its influence. The Frogman follows close behind into the swamp, back to the Bunyip's lair, a large hollow tree on an island. But as the Frog-man comes near and reaches out to his wife, he finds himself as well under the Bunyip's power, and cannot move.
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Days, weeks, months and seasons went by while the couple remained transfixed. Finally, one day the rains came and a violent storm broke the Bunyip's power, and the two were able to escape. Upon returning to their tribe, the man tells the others how he used frogs to find his wife, and the whole tribe never hunts or hurts frogs again.
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Sources: (1) Rose, Carol, Giants, Monsters, and Dragons: An Encyclopedia of Folklore, Legend, and Myth, W. W. Norton & Company; (2) Smith, Malcolm, Bunyips & Bigfoots: In Search of Australia's Mystery Animals, Millennium Books; (3) Carol and Dinah, Mack, A Field Guide to Demons, Fairies, Fallen Angels, and Other Subversive Spirits, Arcade Publishing.
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