Retna Lestari and Bakuh the Giant

Retna Lestari dah Bakuh si Raksasa >> Edisi Bahasa Indonesia

Folklore from Yogyakarta

A long time ago, there was a mean giant. And every time he wanted to eat, he always looked for the animals. He ate almost all kinds of animals. And of course, the animals did not live peacefully. They were scared Bakuh would eat them.

Slowly, the numbers of animals were decreasing. And finally there was no animal left in the jungle. Bakuh started to go to the villages. He wanted to eat humans!

The gods and the goddess in the heaven were angry. They wanted to punish Bakuh. Thereforg they sent one beautiful goddess. Her name was Retna Lestari.

Bakuh was walkingwhen he saw Retna Lestari picking some flowers. He was surprised to see a beautiful woman in the jungle. He fell in love instantly.

"Hello, beautiful girl. What's your name? I never saw you before," said Bakuh.

"My name is Retna Lestari. And of course you never saw me. I always ran and saved my life when you were hungry. I hope now you are not hungry," said Retna Lestari.

"Don't be afraid, Retna. I will never eat you. You are so beautiful and I'm in love with you. Will you marry  me?" asked Bakuh.

"What? No way! I will never marry a mean giant like you."

"l'll do anything for you, Retna."

"Anything? OK.I wants to have red clouds during sunset. But I don't want you to get it for me. I don't want your sharp nails to tear the clouds."

"So, what do I have to do?"

"Simple. You just lie down with your face downward. I will stand on your back I hope I can reach the clouds."

And then Bakuh lied down with his face downward.

And when Retna Lestari was already standing on his back, she said, "I cannot reach the clouds. I will put some big stone on your back. I want to stand on the stones so I can reach the clouds."

"Can you reach the clouds now?" asked Bakuh.

"Not yet, I will put more stones on your body. And remember, don't move your body. If you do, I will fall," said Retna Lestari.

She immediately put more stones. This time she put bigger stones. With her power as a goddess, she could put the big stones easily.

Slowly, all Bakuh's body was covered by stones. Retna Lestari put two very big stones, one on his head and one on his feet. Bakuh could not breathe. He wanted to stand up but he could not do it. He then realized that Retna Lestari already tricked him. He just yelled and screamed!

Slowly the two big stones became mountains. The big stone on Bakuh's head became Merapi Mountain and the big stone on his feet became Merbabu Mountain.

People now say that when they hear a rumbling noise from the mountains, they believe that Baku is yelling and screaming. He is cursing Retna Lestari for tricking him. ***

Mt Merbabu

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