|Bukusu Folktales (Kenya Literature Bureau, 1986, 134 p.)|
A long time ago an old woman asked her sons to slaughter a large he-goat for her meal so that she could fetch them bridewealth cattle. Knowing how aged and sickly the old woman was, the sons laughed and said to her.
But mother, since you can neither cultivate in the garden nor get married again, how would you fetch us bride-wealth cattle?
The old woman insisted that she had no intention of eating the he-goat for nothing, but would earn bride wealth for her sons. Unbelievingly, the sons selected a fat he-goat and slaughtered it. They then prepared a tasty meal for their mother. After the old woman had eaten the he-goat meal, she called her sons to her side and solemnly said:
My children, you know that I am sickly and too old to live any longer. There is nothing you can do to prolong my life. But I do not want to die for nothing. There are herdsmen who always pass here driving a large herd of cattle. I have observed them many times and noticed that they often do stop by that foxhole and try to look for a fugitive bush-pig thrusting spears at the mouth of the hole. I want you to dress me in a skin of a dead bush-pig and conceal me in the foxhole so that when the herdsmen come they can spear me to death thinking that they are killing a bush-pig. Once they have done that, you can seize their cattle and claim compensation for my murder.
The sons obeyed the instructions of their mother and did as she had bidden them to. They then concealed themselves in the nearby bush and waited for the herdsmen to come. Shortly afterwards, the herdsmen drove their cattle by and at once headed for the foxhole. One of them was heard shouting that he had seen the bush-pig in the foxhole.
He quickly thrust a spear into the foxhole and continued jabbing at the oldwoman, thinking that he was killing a bush-pig. The old woman screamed in her dying agonies and thereupon the sons dashed out from their hiding place and surrounded the herdsmen demanding that instead of killing them in the revenge of their mother's death the herds men should at once pay a fine of thirty head of cattle for killing their mother.
The herdsmen greatly apologised for the misadventure and agreed to pay a fine of thirty head of cattle to the sons of the deceased old woman. On the following day the sons organised a pompous burial ceremony for their mother, and slaughtered two cows in her memory.