The Potawatomi Boy
In the month of strawberries, Green Leaf’s breath made a cloud in front of his nose. His long shirt felt stiff. Goose bumps dotted his aunt’s arms. Mother held tight to her scarf.
Green Leaf’s family had returned to the summer village. It was good to see the other families of their clan.
In winter, each family moved to a camp deep in the forest. They hardly saw each other all season. Father said that in the winter it was easier for the people to build smaller homes in the shelter of the trees. Wood for the fire was close by so they kept warm and cooked their dried beans, venison, and turkey. In the long dark of the winter camp, Green Leaf’s grandfather told stories of the Big Hairs.
Now the clans were back together in the clearing on the hill, at their summer hogans of bark and long grass.
Today, Green Leaf, his mother, and his aunt walked to the village of the Big Hair people. Mother carried maple vinegar and dried juniper berries in a basket along with the green fish Green Leaf trapped that morning near the join of the creeks. He had hoped to eat the fish himself, but Mother said they’d make a fine trade.