Loomings Illustration

The Danish Arctic explorer, Knud Rasmussen, reporting words of the shaman Aua during his Fifth Thule Expedition, 1921: “Our tales are narratives of human experience, and therefore they do not always tell of beautiful things . . . The tongue should be the echo of that which must be told, and it cannot be adapted according to the moods and tastes of man.”

My own “narrative of human experience,” starts with musings and loomings in October, 2000: “The extreme urgency to talk to the future, perhaps more than to her contemporaries, through her skincut record and challenging trail across her homeland would mark Qaya as the beginning of history. Like Puritan diarists in 17th century Massachusetts Bay Colony, the implied message is I matter and you can learn from my experience. Which must further connote you matter, too.”

The professor would be a tenured academic with lots of time. Ironically, it’s the young people, students and trekkers, who don’t have time and must figure it all out right now and without ‘divine intervention’ . . . He knows so much more than his students while he’s on site, it’s hard for them to grasp what he does not know. His shortcomings arise less from him than his students’ perceptions: their imperative as Young People turns out to be not fully consistent with being a student because they require a Rite of Passage. If their culture doesn’t require one, Young People will invent it for themselves.

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