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Women and Wild Animals - Author Notes Part II

Posted November 04 2012

Simmssml_2I have never tired of telling LOK SNOWEDJAS and learning about the story.  My first encounter with it was in Strand Bookstore, where I saw a book  of Moduc
tales printed in 1904, in the wrong area and bought it -  because when I opened it, I read the first line  of a tale, " LOK SNEWEDJAS was a woman during the day but at night she became a bear." it was the final story that I chose at that time.  I  phoned up Ron Evans, a Chippewa-Cree Keeper of the Talking Stick who was living in North Carolina at far from the reservation where he grew up in Saskatchewan. He was building a boat in Barbara Freeman's (a storyteller) driveway far from any water. 

He called me back collect later that day and we spoke for three hours. I told him the story. He listened. I asked about meanings and symbols. He never explained anything to me. But he kept telling me stories, other stories,  anecdotes about his life and being trained to be  a storyteller or being in the bush with old hunters.  I was a bit
frustrated, having always in the back of my mind my seemingly seering questions. 

Finally I asked, "why do you think I chose this story?"   He said, "You did not choose
the story. This story has chosen you."  Getting a bit nervous I said, "Perhaps I should not be telling this Native myth."  He laughed and commanded, "It chose you.
You have to tell it now. Don't be impatient or you will gather a dust storm."

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