Posts Tagged ‘Folklore’

Country Folklore Revisited


Back when I was a city girl, I met a woman that cemented pieces of country folklore in my mind.  She was raised in a hilly, woodsy area, along the edge of the Missouri Ozarks.   Many times over she told me the story of how she was “raised up” with woods full of rattle snakes.  She often tried to teach me the truth in sayings that were passed down from her “folk people.”

In her own words:  

Drop rusty nails into the cooking pot to tenderize tough rooster meat.  

When you kill a goat you must sneak up on it.  If the goat becomes surprised, the meat will be too tough to eat.

Do not allow hay droppings to sit in a bucket of water overnight.  The hay will turn into snakes.

Do not can green beans while menstruating.  Doing so will cause the beans to go bad.

Always keep a dog as a pet.  A dog will take illnesses away from its owner. 

More from others:

If you kill a frog, either accidentally or on purpose, the milk in your cow will dry up.

If a bird flies into your house, it means a death will occur.

A pregnant woman should never look at a snake, it will “mark” the baby.

When you comb your hair, you must not let a bird steal a strand for its nest or you will have headaches all summer.

True or false, and I think the word folklore says it all, these sayings are passed down from generation to generation.  Interestingly enough, many are believed and followed.

I find myself knocking on wood.  I am not superstitious in any way, but if I say something that I think will “jinx” me (ex:  “I haven’t had that happen in a very long time”), I knock on wood! Do I REALLY think knocking on wood is going to save me from something going wrong? No!

Oh, and breaking a mirror.  The last time I broke a mirror was the day I moved into this house.  I could have cried.  I felt the hand of doom for a moment.  Absolute silliness!

How about you? Do you toss the folklore out the window, or do you hang on to certain sayings like treasured gold?

Oh, by the way, with 20 water buckets on my farm, I do believe I would be living in a snake nightmare by now if all of those pieces of hay really did turn into snakes overnight! Yikes!!!

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