Family Lore for the Future

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    Linda CarterLinda

    I’m hereby creating a myth. Last spring I got interested in learning to sing Tutelo songs that have been kept in use by the Iroquois up north. Down here, we used gourd drums. I started thinking about maybe growing some gourds. Before I could get around to it, though, I noticed a big vine growing in my garden. Birdhouse gourds. I didn’t plant any birdhouse gourds. I planted some seeds a couple years ago, but nothing came up.

    The vine took over the garden and thrived. I tried cutting a few vines with blossoms, to encourage the existing gourds to grow bigger. That only resulted in a growth spurt. Twenty four gourds grew to maturity.

    The first frosts have been here and the vine has died, leave all 24 of those gourds prominent in the garden now. I was passing by them down the driveway and I thought of that movie, “Coccoon” where the aliens had survived for millenium in those big pods. The thought occurred to me that that’s what the gourds were. Only no aliens, just natives.

    Anyway, these are some very special gourds. If I give you a drum made from one of them, it will be a significant gift and you will be required to find the voice in that drum, and have a duty to see that the drum is cared for and survives. They will not be for sale.

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