Monday, November 12, 2012

Snow on the Mountain...Time to Tell Stories

In the Navajo tradition when snow falls on the mountains, it is time to tell stories.  One of my Navajo friends remembers life in the hogan in winter.  "The fire was warm and my grandfather would lay back on his blanket, his arms behind his head and gaze up at the ceiling.  I would wait for the stories to begin...stories of the creation, stories of his youth.

I too remember my grandparents telling stories.  After a Sunday dinner, the adults sat around the linen covered table.  We children crawled under the table thinking the white table cloth would "hide" us.  And then the stories began...tales of my grandparents youth.  Favorites included the time my father got sprayed by a skunk or my grandfather's stories about sleeping in a hut with his brother in the winter and having to break the ice in the bucket to wash in.

The story telling tradition is part of life for the Navajo.  The importance of story telling is demonstrated in the story tellers rug....

And this story tellers seed pot glazed with horse hair....

And of course a writer needs to own this story teller bracelet.

Story telling is an art.  It is also part of what makes us human.  Stories are the way we pass down who we are and what is important.  Stories are the way we communicate...the way we share.

Stories are the reason I became a writer....Stories my parents and grandparents told.  

When you tell a story to someone it becomes a part of them.  They can retell it in their words, change it, make it theirs.  A story told is a gift.

Go ahead try it. Give the gift a a story to someone you know, snow on the mountain or not.

1 comment:

Barbara O'Connor said...

I LOVE that bracelet! So cool.