Tell-It Tuesday: Why Leaves Are So Colorful in the Fall

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Tell-It Tuesday

Why Leaves are So Colorful in the Fall

A retelling of a Huron legend


The Great Council meeting was called to order.

              “What is this I hear about Deer?” said Bear, angrily. “I heard that Deer walked across the Rainbow Bridge to Sky Land.”


              “What you hear is true,” said the other members of the Great Council. They watched Bear with apprehension. He was very proud, and very selfish. They knew he would be angry about Deer’s journey to Sky Land. Bear often created trouble with the other animals in the Great Council. How would he react to this news?

Bear jumped up and lumbered from the meeting, shouting, “Deer will be punished for this! You will see!”

Bear ran to the Rainbow Bridge. He trudged across the bridge, snarling at the brilliant colors in his pathway. When he entered the Sky Land, he looked for Deer.


              When Bear found him, he grumbled, “Why did you come here? Why weren’t you at the Great Council meeting? Why didn’t you wait until all of us could come here, too?”


Deer looked at Bear. His dark brown eyes grew darker yet with anger. “Who are you to talk to me like that? Only the Great Wolf can ask me questions like that. I am tired of you causing trouble with all the animals.”

Deer threw his head back and reared up on his hind legs. His great horns shook with anger, and his eyes burned with rage.

“I can kill you with one swing of my head!” Deer shouted.

But Bear did not tremble. He was not afraid of Deer. He knew his claws were long and powerful.

Bear rose up onto his hind legs. He growled his deepest, loudest growl. The sky shook with the power of it.


              The fight began.

The Great Council below heard the terrible sound of the great fight between Bear and Deer.

“I will stop this battle,” said Wolf and he raced up into the Sky Land.

When Deer and Bear saw Wolf coming towards them, they each ran in a different direction. As they ran, the blood from Bear dripped off of Deer’s horns.

Down the blood fell, into the Lower World of the animals. Some of it landed on the leaves of the trees there, turning them into many colors. Red, orange, yellow, brown.












Every year since the leaves of trees have turned brilliant colors in the Autumn. It is as if the blood of Bear is falling down from the sky again.

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             Can you make up your own story about why leaves change color in the fall? Have fun and be creative!!


Nature Mamaw

All photographs courtesy of


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