Moon of breaking trees

Feb 14, 2021 by Linda J Wright

Limbs snapped off trees, whole oaks and firs broken, lying in the road, tender budding branches of ornamental pears ripped from their trunks. I’m an ex-pat Canadian, and my country’s First People certainly named this month correctly — the Moon of Breaking Trees. As I drove to town today, this poetic name for February’s moon put me strongly in mind of my country’s First People and their poetry. It’s been a long time coming, but fortunately Canadian First People writers of all kinds are now gaining recognition, and a small press in Toronto, Second Story Books, is helping them tell important stories. Good for them! I think from time to time that I would like to tell my First People story, a story I have been keeping a secret. Here it is: my great grandmother was Iroquois. This was evidently such a shameful fact that my family hid it from me and just by chance, as I investigated my forbears (one founded the city of Hull, Quebec), I discovered it. It took quite a bit of digging, but once I pulled the right threads of the twisted ball of yarn of my ancestry, there it was. Marriage to an “unnamed indigenous woman”. Ha. What a challenge for a mystery writer! So I dug a little deeper and found her. Her name was Katsitsaroroks, which means, apparently, Gathering Flowers. Her band was Okwaho, the Wolf Clan. I’d sure like to dig even deeper, write about her, let her join the cast of my Kieran Yeats novels, somehow. Who knows? Maybe I will.