The god of lightning who brought fire to the earth:

The yam and the taro were in Yap, but as yet there was no fire to cook them. The natives used to dry them in the sand, and, as it were, sunbake them. And the folk suffered grievously from internal pains, and besought Yalafath to help them once more. Immediately there fell a great red-hot thunderbolt from the sky, and smote a Choi tree (Pandanus). At the contact of the fiery element the Choi broke out into a regular eruption of prickles down the middle and sides of every leaf. Dessra, the Thunder god, thus found himself fixed fast in the tree- trunk, and called out in a lamentable voice for somebody to deliver him from his irksome prison. A woman named Guaretin, sunbaking taro hard by, heard the voice, and helped the distressed god. He inquired on what work she was engaged, and when she told him, bade her fetch plenty of moist clay. This he kneaded into a goodly cooking-pot (Thib), to the great delight of the worthy housewife. He then sent her in search of some sticks from the Arr tree (called Tupuk by the Ponapeans), which he put under his armpits and infused into them the latent sparks of fire, and went his way.

He is also associated with earthquakes.



  • Christian, F. W. (1899). Caroline Islands: Travel in the Sea of the Little Lands. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, pp. 320, 385.
  • Furness, William Henry. (1910). The Island of Stone Money: Yap of the Carolinas. Philadelphia: Lippincott, p. 151.