Earth Keeper by N. Scott Momaday
A moving and meaningful meditation on our relationship to the earth and those things we owe it. Gratitude, respect, appreciation and love. A book for everyone.
I am reluctant to categorize this work as fiction or any common category given to books. It is more akin to psalmody, poetry, prayer. A sense of calm, of commitment, of balance with the earth comes to the reader of these meditations, these recounts of native story, myth and beliefs. The world owes much to the art of fiction in that universal verities are to be found there. These pages ring with truth of a sort that occupies the space between fact and faith that is seldom if ever evoked by even the most skillful novelists or poets. A peaceful and fulfilled feeling arises from them.
This book can certainly be read from cover to cover, and I encourage anyone to do it. But it can be read by individual pages to equal effect. Each one is a gem and a complete thought that can be contemplated at length without reference to any other. The mental images, the emotional reactions, the urging to examine one’s self, the recognition of the inner thoughts of another human are all worthy of serious consideration.
Stories from the native people, personal observations, original outpourings of the author’s mind are all to be found interwoven with a persistent admonition the keep the earth. To protect, to respect, to preserve and appreciate the world we have been given and to perpetuate these attitudes in others are the admonitions that prevail throughout. Without accusation or proselytization, gently, kindly, and profoundly these traits are encouraged in such a way that the reader feels calmly satisfied that an important lesson has been learned and can be passed on. We only need to pay attention.
Scott Momaday is without doubt a writer of the highest caliber, a teacher and mentor, a spellbinding speaker and storyteller whose words are attended with deserved respect, but he is first a thoughtful human walking the earth with love and hope. I recommend this book to anyone at all, reader of fiction, nonfiction, self-help, self-realization; those seeking healing and meaning in life. You will feel better for it.