Name the Face

Thank you for entering and thank you for voting.

The Ancient Observer will be watching over us for many years to come.

Barbara Mueller of Muncie, Indiana has Named the Face and she has won a framed La Cloche photograph of her choice.

 

 

 

 

The Ancient Observer

 

The Entries

Goldie

Perhaps we should name the image Eos after the Greek goddess of Dawn. The face has been here since the dawn of humanity. Formed by violent, volcanic eruptions from the beginning of the dawn of civilization. Twisted, turned and ground into its present shape and ultimately weathered by thousands of years of heat, snow, cold and ice. Yes Eos would be a good name. But this name is from another time and place and not fitting in this day and age.

I believe that each generation of the Ojibwe people, that passed this way, named the face after someone or something important to them. The voyageurs, missionaries, explorers and present day vacationers have all passed by and created their own special name for the man cast in stone. The names have not survived, but have passed into the history and folklore of the La Cloche mountains.

So I believe its only fitting that we name the face after someone of our own time, place and environment. Who among us has not risen at dawn to view the fire from the mountain where the sun rises. The fire brings a golden hue to the village and another day in paradise has begun. Goldie, the Zen Master, begins his rounds with the dawn of each new day by watching over the village and its residents. Goldie the eldest resident of the village, the face weathered by time and the body hardened by decades of work, still rising at dawn to watch over his people. Thanks for the memories.

Michael Charmin
Willisville, Ontario
March 31, 2003

 

 

Who Am I?

Who am I?

Why am I here?

Can you see me?

What do I fear?

I fear I have been forgotten,

long, long ago.

Never to be remembered,

cast in stone.

Vicki Guagliano
Ancaster, Ontario
March 28, 2003

 

Ancient Observer

I am not going to write a story, but I do wonder at the history and the changes in terrain, inhabitants, weather, etc. that this ancient stone face has observed over the centuries.

I think a simple name "Ancient Observer" fits in whatever language it is known. We know that these mountains were much higher and have changed over the millenia - think what they have seen!

 

Barbara Mueller
Muncie, Indiana
February 23, 2003

 

Lorrain

My entry is "Lorrain Rockface" or Face of Lorrain.  This rock is a diabase dike cutting the Lorrain quartzite formation. 
 
Native legends would probably have determined this face to be a protector of the peoples that entered the lakes that "Lorrain" would oversee. 
 
As a significant geological specimen of the area and as a symbol of native legend, this landmark could be a great boon to tourism in the area. 
 
Chris Clark
Blind River, Ontario
February 11, 2003

 

 

Nana'b'oozoo

by Greg Neale,
January 24, 2003

 

This rock is old, very old.

This rock looked out over the land before our grandfathers' grandfather walked on Mother Earth. For a millennium this rock has seen many things including fire, wind, rain, and snow but this was not always the way. This face that peers from the rock was once more than that. This face in the rock was once a man!

In the time of our ancestors there were not many tribes. Few people ventured about the land. Game was plentiful and the sun always shone. Wild rice grew in abundance in the lakes and rivers and many other gifts from mother earth poured in. It was during this time of peace and serenity that the Ojibwe people of the White Mountains began to forget their thankfulness toward Kitchi-Manitou (Great Mystery) and to Muzzu-Kummik-Quae (Mother Earth). The people were not bad people but they had overlooked that Kitchi-Manitou and Muzzu-Kummik-Quae provided their very existence.

It was during this forgetful time that the spirits of the animals lands and woods became less giving to the Ojibwe people. At first the people didn’t notice the changes. The rice did not grow as high. The deer and rabbits were not as fat or the partridge so plentiful. Then one day while out with his three brothers hunting Nana'b'oozoo saw something that he had never seen before. It was a large footprint. It was larger than the bears and narrow like his own but it was different. He rushed back his village to tell his father what he had seen in the woods.

When he got to his log house there was no one there. His entire family had gone. Frightened he looked for his brothers that had been hunting with him. They too were gone. Not knowing what to do Nana'b'oozoo climbed the highest of the trees and looked over Mother earth for the answer as to where everyone had gone. After making his way to the top he could still see nothing. The sun shone as it always had the water was rippled by the wind. After the sun had gone to sleep and her sister the moon crept into the sky Nana'b'oozoo began to talk to the Manitous of the forest and ask them to help him find his family. No one answered. He began to cry and as he did his tears fell upon the branches of the tree. The tree sprit felt sorry for him and it wrapped him like a babe in its soft warm branches and rocked him off to sleep.

Nana'b'oozoo awoke with a start; he had heard a loud screech. Very high and piercing like the wind during a thundering storm. It was then he saw him. Shaded at first but slowly the moon brought its full light upon the skeleton. It was floating inches from Nana'b'oozoo face. Nana'b'oozoo realized at once that this was Pauguk the cursed flying skeleton.

He was evil and fear rippled through Nana'b'oozoo. The screeching stopped and Pauguk taunted the young Nana'b'oozoo. "I know where all have gone and I will show you if you come with me" Pauguk said. Nana'b'oozoo wondered why Pauguk would want to help him but more than that he wanted his family back. Nana'b'oozoo said that he would follow him and he started to climb down the tree. At the base of the tree the skeleton stood floating inches above the ground.

Pauguk began " You and your people have forgotten the manitous, you have forgotten to respect the very things that give your people life. Kitchi-Manitou and Muzzu-Kummik-Quae have stopped looking your way and now the Weendigoes have come to these lands and are taking your people". Nana'b'oozoo knew that the Weendigoes was a race of giants and that they ate people. This explained the footprint he had seen while hunting.

Nana'b'oozoo asked Pauguk where the Weendigoes had taken his Family. "They have gone to the north now. These Weendigoes know that Kitchi-Manitou is not looking this way so they will take all of the peoples of this land." Said Pauguk. "What can I do to get the great Kitchi-Manitou too once again look our way and scare these cannibals back where they came from?" asked Nana'b'oozoo. Pauguk thought for some time and then he said "Take you finest arrow and your strongest bow and climb the highest rock in the land. Turn your face to the south and just before the rays of the morning sun crest the horizon you will see the small cooking fire of Kitchi-Manitou. You will only see it for a moment so you must shoot fast and true. Your arrow must strike the dying flames of the fire. This will wake Kitchi-Manitou and make him once again look this way."

Nana'b'oozoo thanked Pauguk and hurried to the village. He found the finest arrow and the strongest bow. He then looked around him to find the highest peak. Finally he saw which was the highest and he started to climb. He was very tired when he reached the highest point and the sun was just starting to show the east.

Nana'b'oozoo looked to the south and saw the Great Island of the Manitous it was here that Kitchi-Manitou slept. As the sun began to rise he looked harder and harder to see the dim light of the far off cooking fire. Finally he thought he could see it. He knocked the arrow to the bow and pulled it to full draw. He took careful aim and let fly the Arrow. The arrow flew straight and true toward the dim light. It was only then that Nana'b'oozoo noticed that the dim light was not a cooking fire at all. It was the mighty Kitchi-Manitou’s headdress.

Terrified now at what he had done he prayed to Kitchi- Manitou to look this way to see the arrow and to move his head. He chanted louder than thunder, harder than the driving rain and at the last moment before his arrow would strike the fatal blow the great head of Kitchi-Manitou turned and looked his way. The great Kitchi-Manitou saw the arrow and moved so that it slipped harmlessly by.

His attention then turned to Nana'b'oozoo who was frozen with fear. Kitchi-Manitou spoke to Nana'b'oozoo "You and your people have forgotten me and all the good things that I and Muzzu-Kummik-Quae have done for you and now you would kill me with one of my own arrows? All things are mine and mine alone I am the great creator and it is my will that is to be done."

Nana'b'oozoo apologized to Kitchi-Manitou and begged his forgiveness. He explained why he had shot the arrow and that the Weendigoes had taken his family. He had listened to Pauguk and was sorry for that too, but what should he have done? Kitchi-Manitou looked deep into the man and saw that he was good. He said, "For me to look upon the people of this land all they need to do is remember me." Nana'b'oozoo thought for a moment and then he realized how simple and good his life was in this land and how grateful he and his people were for all the great things that Kitchi-Manitou and Muzzu-Kummik-Quae had provided. He turned to look at Kitchi-Manitou but he was gone.

As he climbed down the rocks, he saw his face reflected back at him from the morning dew on the smooth rocks. His hair had turned white and his face had creased and worn. The longer he looked the more he realized that he was not looking at the rock but out of the rock. He was no longer a man he was becoming one with mother earth. He was becoming the face in the ROCK!

The people of the village awoke in the huts and log houses of their village. They knew that something had happened the previous night but no one remembered the Weendigoes coming and capturing them. No one had noticed that Nana'b'oozoo was not among them.

As they started to do their daily chores a young boy looked up at the highest rock and there carved for all to see was the face of Nana'b'oozoo looking out toward the south toward the island of Kitchi-Manitou. Then as they looked at Nana'b'oozoo face, they remembered the night before, and they remembered the horrible Weendigoes, and they remembered their place in this land, but most important of all when they looked into the face of stone they remembered Nana'b'oozoo and how he got the great Kitchi-Manitou to look their way.

Written by

Greg Neale
Brantford, Ontario
January 24, 2003

I think that the face in the rock should have the Ojibwe name "Nana’b’oozoo".

Hope you liked my story!

Any resemblance to persons living or dead is a coincidence this is a fictional account of how that face got in the rock.

 

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