El Cucuy

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The Lengend of El Cucuy, became a bilingual story that is also known to be “Boogeyman” in American. The legend came from Latin America but has remained a strong part of border folklore. The beast is known by different names to different people throughout Latin America. It has been called cucuy, coco, cocu, chamuco and a dozen other titles. This bogeyman takes different forms depending on the family. It is best known for telling a young child ,“Portate bien o te lleva el cucuy,” they say. “Behave, or the cucuy will get you.” Just by even saying “Uy El Cucuy”, makes the children have fear, and stop misbehaving.

One lengend of El Cucuy was that he was once human. Tales tell of a strict, father who lived on a ranch in Mexico. When his children misbehaved he would lock them in a dark closet for hours. One night, when the father left to go to town, an oil lamp fell, and the house burned to the ground with the children locked inside. Upon his return he frantically rode into the blazing damage. Both he and the horse were immediately swallowed whole by the area where the closet once stood. The stories are better to be told in the dark, to get frightened.

He is also to be described as a gigantic old man with a humped back and a large, red left ear that can hear everything retold by Joe Hayes. This cautionary tale unfolds with strong, descriptive language in both Spanish and English. After the mother's death, a man must raise his three daughters alone. The youngest does all the work around the house because her two older sisters are too lazy and full of mischief. When their tricks go too far, the angry father calls out to the Cucuy to come down from his cave in the mountain and carry them away. The girls think this is just an idle threat until the Cucuy arrives and hauls them off. The poor girls are stashed deep in a cave where they truly regret their misdeeds. Father also regrets calling the Cucuy and spends his time searching for them. Finally the girls...
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