UNCLE BILL FAY’S ROPEY MILK

Nov 20, 2013 by

M: Well, you see, he claimed that he could do any kind of witchery work, yessir he said he could do any kind of witchery work, and by jim he had a lot of people fooled. They claimed if you b’lieved in him, why he could do it, if you b’lieved it now, really b’lieved it. But they ‘uz some of ’em wouldn’t b’lieve it you see and he couldn’t do a thing about it, the ones that wouldn’t b’lieve. So, it come on, he says afterwhile his cows is witched, they commenced giving ropey milk, his cows did. He had a bunch of cows, he had sheep, oh he’s gettin along good, and his cows was a’givin’ ropey milk, so my daddy went over there ever’ once in awhile. He married his aunt, you see, my grandpaw’s sister he
married. An he went over there, and said, “Well,” he said, “my cows is witched.” He said, “What?” He said, and he said he was just a boy, just young, my daddy said he was, and said “My cows is witched,” he
said. He asked him what ‘uz wrong with ’em an he said “They’re givin’ ropey milk. By god,” he said, “that has to be takened off a them too” he said. “Why Mr. Faye” he said, er “Uncle Bill” he said, “that’s somethin they eatin'” “If that ain’t the craziest damned talk,” he said, “ever I heared tell of.” He said, “I know what it is,” he said. “They’re witched. An I’m a’gonna take,” he said, “that off a ’em.” So he said, “I don’ know what, er how you’re gonna take it off,” he said. “You turn ’em another way and then see,” he said, ” if they don’t quit eatin’ them weeds and they’ll quit givin’ that milk,” Said, “they’ll quit givin’ it.” Say, “Eh, be goddammed if I turn ’em no other way.” he said. ” I know what’s wrong with ’em.” Well, so he said, he went back home. He’d just go over there ever’ once a month and stay a night or two with ’em. Went back over, and he said, he had, he always planted him out a big piece of ground, then he said he went back over, and the old man had a big, lot of logs all around, and a big bresh (brush) heap piled up, and he said, he said to her–he was out a workin–he said then, he said “What is Uncle Bill aimin to do, Aunt Bets?” “Oh honey,” she said, “he’s a gonna take that witch off a his cows.” “A gonna do what?” he said. “Oh,” she said, “he’s a gonna take that witchery” she said, “off a his cows.” “Well,” he said, “how is he a gonna take it off that a way.” “Why,” she said, “he’s a gonna burn up one a them calves.” “You mean,” he said, ” he’s a gonna burn one a them up?” “Oh yes,” she said. “You can’t tell him nothing,” she said. “He won’t b’lieve no other way.” ” ‘Ell,” he said, ” that ol’ man’s crazy. That’s what’s wrong with him.” “Eh,” she said, “You can’t make, you can’t make your Uncle Bill,” she said, “b’lieve nothin
else.” And so at last he come in, right then. “I’m glad you come,” he said, “good! By god,” he said, “you the feller I been a looking for.” And he asked him, he said, “Why did you want me to come today?” “I’ve got a job,” he said, “for you to do.” He said, “you have?” “Yessir,” he said, “I’ve got a job I want you to help me do.” Said, “What kind of a job is
it?” “By god,” he said, ” I’m a takin the witch off a my cows today,” he said. “I want you,” he said, ” to go out there after dinner with me,” he said. ” I’m a gonna burn one a them calves.” “A gonna do what?” he said. He said, “I’m a gonna burn one a them calves.” “Why Uncle Bill,” he said, “don’t do sich stuff as that.” He said, “Why, lord god, I wouldn’t do that for all the cows you got.” “By god, I will,” he said. “I can’t use that milk, an I’m a wantin that milk,” he said. “I use it.” Now he said “Yeah,” he said, “I wan’t you to help me,” he said, “throw that calf in the fire.” Said, “I’ll be damned if I help you throw no calf in the
fire. Nosir.” “You won’t do it?” “Nosir,” he said, “I won’t help do
that.” “Well,” he said, “After” he said, “you can do as you damn please,” he said. “I will.” After he eats his dinner. Around now he said he was a muchofamannow. Hesaidhewasstoutandamuchofamanandhe said he went out there and he piled logs up and he had some a laying there a ready, he’d already skidded in and would have ’em there a ready and he said it ‘uz a big bresh heap and he went out there and set that afire; now hit had laid there, that bresh had, till it got dried out, y’see, when he piled it. Anyhow. And he picked up a, went an catched one a them big calves, he said it was a big calf too, and how he done it, he said he didn’t know. How he done it. An he said he throwed that calf, he throwed that calf, he said, right into that blaze of fire. An then piled them logs on it so it couldn’t get up. Burnt that calf up alive. Said he turned and run. Now he said he wouldn’t seen anything burnt that a way fer nothin.
R: He was crazy.
M: He said he shore done ‘er. “Oh Aunt Bets,” he said, “the ol’ devil ‘ll get that man,” he said, “fer killin stuff like that, burnin it up alive.” “Oh honey,” she said, “you can’t tell your Uncle Bill nothin.” “I know it,” he said, “you can’t.” Said, “He can l’arn somethin though.” “Well.” So he said he stayed around there, he couldn’t hardly get away from ’em. They wanted him to stay all night, but he didn’t stay. An he stayed around there with ’em and he went back home that evenin’. In a few days he went back and he asked him, he said “Did you get the witchery taken off a your, off a your cows?” “Yes, by god,” he said, “I got ‘er burnt off,” he said. “When that calf burnt up, when that calf burnt up,” he said, “that took it off,” he said. “That’s what he done,” he said. “I burnt her right off,” he said. “That ‘uz all the way,” he said, “I could get it off first was to take and burn that calf”
D: Well.
M: An he said “I wouldn’t have burnt that calf for ever’ cow you had, and ever’ thing else you’ve got” “By god, I will,” he said. “I’m different from you.” He said, “It took the witchery off.”


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