Tsegihi. House made of dawn, House made of evening light, House made of dark cloud, House made of male rain, House made of dark mist, House made of female rain, House made of pollen, House made of grasshoppers, Dark cloud is at the door. The trail out of it is dark cloud. The zigzag lightning stands high upon it. Male deity! Your offering I make. I have prepared smoke for you. Restore my feet for me, Restore my legs for me, Restore my body for me, Restore my mind for me
Ben Benally sings the song "House Made of Dawn" to Abel on a hill in Los Angeles in this passage from "The Night Chanter," February 20. The song is one of the songs of their ancestors, and represents the "old ways" to the two characters. Both Ben and Abel make a pact to sing the song together sometime in the future, but we do not see this occur in the course of the novel. However, another instance of the song occurs at the end of the novel. After Francisco dies and Abel runs in the valley—the same course where the race of the dead is run—Abel sings this song to himself under his breath. The song encapsulates a number of Native American ceremonial practices, and is what Momaday uses to begin his novel, both in the prologue and of course, the title of his novel itself.