This book Red Man’s Origin was originally published by Panther’s Lodge as part of its Cherokee Chapbooks Series in November 2011.
Smashwords Edition, May 2013.
Copyright © 2011, Donald N. Panther-Yates. All Rights Reserved.
There are rare moments in our lives when we come upon an electrifying text. We have the feeling, “Here is what has been missing all along!” In the world of Native Americans, where oral communication takes the place of the written word, such an epiphany often occurs when we first hear—or first begin to fathom—the story of our people’s origin, nature and character. In the past, such narratives were recounted in ceremonial recitations at gatherings to ensure their transmission to future generations. I recall a starry night in Tennessee many years ago when I heard the traditional story of the Cherokee people’s origins from an elder. My emotions were mixed, ranging from “Why hadn’t I heard this before?” (and being somewhat peeved) to a sublime sense of relief and resolution, gratification and gratitude. After that, my life was changed; it became more reflective, “figured out” and purposeful. I felt as though the ancestors had spoken to me.