Rita Walker (Blog Six): By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris
An interesting twist. The Haida believe that animals are more intelligent than humans and can transform into human form. If you are from the Haida it would be good to hear from you. Why have we included Indio’s (Gordon Peterson) song Hard Sun? We’ll leave that up to you to figure out.
Lying in her bed Rita stares at the black cloth of the curtain that blocks the view of the night sky. Soon she will pull the curtain back but not yet. She turns off the lamp beside her bed and stares up into the darkness of the room. She thinks of the Indio song Hard Sun, and the verse: When I look to leave her I always stagger back again. The song reminds her of the first time her world changed.
She was born in Haida Gwaii to parents with ancestry in both Haida and the Vikings, and something else that her parents never discussed with her. She was a little girl when she learned of her difference. What she thought was unique she later discovered to be very rare. Lying in a four person tent with her parents and older brother in the Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, with the rain pitter-pattering against the tent’s canvas, she dreamt.
She crawled along one of the nearby trails on her hands and knees with her blanket over her back. In the dream she needed to move like this during the night in order to sleep. Occasionally she would nap on her blanket then continue crawling.
The dawn light awoke her but she was not sleeping in the tent. She grabbed her blanket and stood up. Looking back at the trail she had crawled along she saw the imprint of a cat’s paws as far back as she could see. She ran back to her parent’s tent. Peering into the tent she saw they were all asleep. She did not want to disturb their slumber so rolled into her blanket near the fire pit her father had made. The second dream that night was the one that changed her forever.
She stood in a field of deciduous and coniferous trees. Near her a young woman in a blue cloak stood. Rita just knew she was one of two sisters. This sister was a Vilas who answers to the Ailbe Rose, an ancient being who resides in Ireland. Rita had stared wide eyed as the Vilas picked up soil from the ground with one hand and took one of Rita’s with the other. The Vilas turned her hand with the soil over and let it pour into Rita’s. When Rita’s hand was full so that the extra soil flowed off her hand back to the ground the Vilas closed Rita’s hand over the soil remaining. When Rita opened her hand with the soil there was nothing there and the dream ended.