Embracing The Moon – Moon Remarque
“Unlike many of the other legends I portray in my work I was not introduced to the legend of Wolf and Moon as a child, but much later in life. Soon after I focused my attention on Native Art, an elder explained to me the importance of Wolf and his ties to the Moon. I felt an immediate resonance with the story and its characters. Wolf has fascinated me from the time I was a child. My earliest drawings were pencil sketches of him. This piece is my interpretation of this tale.
Long ago, when the earth was young, each spirit came forward and claimed a role in the world: Cedar, Salmon, Eagle, and so forth. Man arrived late to this world, being last of all the spirits to take form. Man found himself wandering about without a clue as to how or what he should do here. His clumsy attempts to provide for himself were amusing to the spirits around him, except to this new arrival. Wolf decided to take it upon himself to befriend this stranger and teach him the uses of the cedar tree. The process of taking the bark and using it for clothing that shed the rain and the tree itself that provided for the canoes that later became the staple of travel for our people. He also went on to teach man to fish and hunt as well. As his skills grew, man departed from Wolf and built villages.
Time passed and a leader was conceived from the union of Human and Star, to rise from the people. He was known as Dakwibalth (the Changer / Transformer). Dakwibalth went on to do great things for the people of Puget Sound, but he eventually began to miss his celestial origin, the Sky World. He made plans to find a wife before he returned to his home. After much searching, Dakwibalth found a worthy wife and realized he had one last concern before he left for the Sky World.
“Who will carry on to watch over the people?” He remembered hearing long ago of how Wolf had taken care of man in the beginning, and Dakwibalth, being half human, felt indebted to Wolf. After seeking out Wolf, Dakwibalth asked him to carry on the guardianship of the people. Wolf proudly accepted this task. Dakwibalth said, “I will shine bright in the night sky so you can see me and tell me of how my people are doing.” With this, Dakwibalth turned to the sky and became what we know today as Moon. And so when the Moon shines full, Wolf sings to him to let him know what has taken place in the passing days.”
-Shaun Peterson / Qwalsius