My Mishoom, Louise Erdrich and Wolves

Before I write a quick blog I should note to you my reader or reader(s) that I am doing this without going back to proof-read or correct my grammar, so this is my disclaimer. What kind of lawyer would I be without a disclaimer and plus it is my lunch break so I only have so much time before I dive back into my mountain of files, actually it is not a mountain, it is a valley of rivers I can barely stay afloat, ahhhhh! the life and whining of a first-year Associate lawyer. 

Anyway, I have been reading the Painted Drum by Louise Erdrich who is, I must say, a beautiful writer. Her sentences flow from one to the next with a harmony and balance you can only find in nature, sitting beside a waterfall or in a meadow of falling leaves, a unique writer that captivates the heart, soul and mind with sentences and words structured to the brilliant tones of Anishinaabe values. 

A chapter in her book is dedicated to wolves which encompass the values of wolves and Anishinaabe and involves a discussion about life, questions answered from one world to the next. This caught my attention because of my connection to the wolf, a connection told to me through stories by my Mishoom. You see my Mishoom grew up with the wolves on our family trapline and they had discussions, secrets he never really shared because they were secrets only I could find the answer to, secrets only found by being on the land. 

The one that will stay with me forever is the winter they helped him. It was a winter that was so cold that the moon turned blue, he called it the season of the blue moon. The air was cold and Arctic winds had known no boundaries or borders, to which the polar bears roamed into our territory having been confused themselves. There was no separation of North and South, insanity crept up all living species but probably crept upon my Mishoom the most who continued to hunt, trap and fish but with no success.

One winter evening after a long day of hunting and growing weaker by the day he trekked home, tired, scrawny and hungry, when he heard a pack of wolves in the distance. He turned and raised his gun thinking the wolves were just as hungry as he was and might have decided to turn on him although he would not make a very satisfying meal. With his rifle aimed, locked and loaded he waited as the wolves neared the treeline when a moose ran out. My mishoom was able to eat well for months thanks to the wolf. True brothers he would call them from that day on. 

Much more to this story but that’s all I have time for today folks…


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