Mexican Folklore

The Wailing Woman

A Mexican Ghost Story

retold by

S.E. Schlosser

Once a Spanish soldier married a beautiful native woman and they had two children whom the soldier loved very much. However, the soldier came from a rich family. His parents and relations disapproved of his wife and threatened to disown him unless he married a Spanish woman. Not wishing to lose his inheritance, the soldier put away his native wife and sent for a bride from Spain.

The soldier's wife was filled with a terrible, jealous rage. To revenge herself against her unfaithful husband, she drowned their two children in the river. The soldier was horrified when he heard what she had done, and tried to have her arrested. But his wife, driven insane by rage, jealousy, and guilt, escaped into the wilds. She roamed through the land, searching the waterways for her children. But she could not find them. Finally, in agony of body and mind, she drowned herself in the river too. 

But the woman's spirit could not escape to heaven because of the weight of her terrible crime.  And so La Llorona, the Wailing Woman, spirit still wanders the earth, wailing in guilt and grief.  She is condemned forever to search in vain for her children.  But she will never find them, for they are no more. 


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Schlosser, author of the Spooky Series

About the Author: S.E. Schlosser

S.E. Schlosser is the author of the Spooky Series by Globe Pequot Press, as well as the Ghost Stories deck by Random House.  She has been telling stories since she was a child, when games of "let's pretend" quickly built themselves into full-length tales acted out with friends. A graduate of both Houghton College and the Institute of Children's Literature, Sandy received her MLS from Rutgers University while working as a full-time music teacher and a freelance author. Read more

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