HIGH EAGLE'S NEST
CAMPFIRE STORIES & LEGENDS
"Dedicated to all those who still have their imaginations
and a love to let them run wild."
I can't think of anyone, young or old, that hasn't heard nor doesn't appreciate stories told to them,
no matter the time of day, the place, group of people or generation. We all like to be read or spoken to by others,
which probably takes us back in time to when a parent or grandparent read to us after dinner or just before bedtime with a
goodnight tale to send us off.
Recitation allows our imaginations to be hooked into the story, and lets it run away with images and pictures with the
spoken words. The book has fresh, novel wording that makes a series of bright pictures in the mind's eye. The creature
characters take on human voices and characteristics in acting out their parts just like people -- you and me.
We actually become participants in the stories by creating visual images and scenes about what is heard. That's the
way it was in the 'old' days.
It is shameful for any society to lose that part of its cultural traditions, especially when things around us are
disappearing so rapidly.
The main task has been to not only keep alive the rich tradition of storytelling, but also to entertain or stimulate
both the reader and listener. Each of the stories, aside from their broad appeal, carries an important theme or message.
One principle on which all critics will agree: A work can never be popular if it is dull. Consequently, most of my
thoughts and concentration have been placed on the feeling of the stories, not the perfection of them. Therefore, this
book's appeal is to the emotions as well as the intellect.
Even the story headings arouse curiosity as well as reflect the contents of the stories. The words make a reader or
listener want to find out what follows.
Things happen in the words, so the reader is curious to know what is coming next. Basically, these stories are designed
to move people, aimed at releasing and stirring their subconscious. Perhaps you may be moved because you find yourself
identifying with the situations.
The writings will give many people of all ages something in which to identify or relate the experiences of their lives.
There is a certain element of excitement and surprise, either in the subject or the telling of the tale. The subjects
and thoughts, themselves, are those that 'come from life' -- things that 'hit home.'
The desire to share my writings with others is in answer to a personal challenge to do the thing I've always wanted to do: to
share both in the colorful heritage of the American Indian, and the transferal of wisdom through stories to the youth.
In particular, I believe people need, even in the contemporary age, stories sprinkled with a touch of Indian wisdom and
humor. We also need to occasionally have a good laugh at ourselves.
"Come close, my grandsons, that I may tell you a
great secret. The partridge has a story.
which sits on yonder limb and scolds our presence has a story . . .
see that great pine with its roots drawing life from the Earth,
and its branches reaching out to the Sky,
and that slender blade of grass growing at its roots.
Each, my grandsons, has its own story
All (beings) have their stories."
-- Edward S. Curtis, 1914
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