The Three Strangers

Ephemera — Umath And The Three Strangers


In the time of Umath, when he had just invented hospitality, three strangers came to his camp, to look at it. The first was sent by the Sun Emperor, and he demanded that Umath give him hospitality, and Umath did, but there was no gift that the stranger could take away, and he did not understand, so he struck out, breaking the hospitality rules, and Umath destroyed him with lightning.
The second was sent by the earth, who asked for hospitality, and Umath gave it, but the earth stranger did not know what to do with the gift, and broke it. Umath was angry, because it was his thing, and threw the stranger out, telling her to keep the gift until it was time for it to be mended.
The third was sent by water, and asked Umath what hospitality was, so he could give a gift as valuable, and Umath replied that giving hospitality was the only thing he required, so they ate together and water departed, and storms are always welcomed by the sea, who rises up to meet them.