Friday, April 23, 2010
Haunted by Waters
"I am haunted by waters..." - Norman Maclean
I, too, am haunted by waters...That's why I had to set my novel, Waters of the Dancing Sky, on Rainy Lake along the Minnesota/Ontario international border. This remote wilderness lake is a place for reflection, renewal, and connection with spirits of the past.
One of my favorite places here is Kettle Falls, now a part of Voyageur's National Park. From the United States side, you look south across the roaring falls - into Canada! This erratic international boundary line was created to honor the historic route of the French-Canadian voyageurs. Colorful brigades of birch bark canoes, loaded with fur pelts, paddled along this river of commerce over 200 years ago.
Rainy Lake is also rich in Native American history and artifacts. The Ojibwe lived beside these waters, gathering berries, harvesting wild rice, hunting, and fishing for great sturgeon beside the falls.
Man has been drawn to water since the beginning of time. Sitting on an island in the middle of Rainy Lake, I become a part of the lake itself. The gentle waves sooth my soul. Perhaps we are all haunted by waters, by a primitive longing for a simpler time...