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Humaza emaciyapi, ma isanti. I am Iron Legs, I am santee.


The Lakota recount in their version of demiurge that the gods lived in the underworld with mankind as their servants. Emergence from the underworld was initiated by Iktomi ("spider"), the trickster, who conspired to cause a rift in the heavens between the sun god Wi and his wife, Hanwi the moon. Their separation marked the creation of time. Some of Iktomi's co-conspirators were exiled to the Earth where the gods of the four winds were scattered and created space.

To populate the Earth, Iktomi struck a deal with the wolves saying that he would no longer cause them trouble. One wolf was sent into the underworld with meat, and convinced a man named Tokahe ("the first") to travel to the surface for a brief visit, telling them about a paradisical world aboveground.. When Tokahe emerged through a cave (Wind Cave in the Black Hills), he found the world to be strikingly beautiful. Returning to the underworld, Tokahe persuaded other families to accompany him to the surface, but upon arrival they discovered that the Earth was full of hardship. Iktomi had by this time prevented humanity from returning below ground, so the families had no choice but to scatter and eke out their livelihoods.