The Life And Times Of The Old Man ~ Why The Art Of Tlakwagila Copperman Whispers To My Spirit

West Coast Winter
December 16, 2015

Hi Luv et alii,

My mother’s parents were Scots. That’s important to my story. I was born in 51, at St. Paul’s Hospital  in Vancouver. The time was about 16:00. My first 17 years were spent either in Vancouver or other cities. The rest of my life has been spent trying to avoid cities. 

When I was 27 my first wife and I moved to the town of Prince Rupert B.C. Canada. She worked at the local Hudson Bay Co.. I was driving cab. On a slow morning sitting in the cab I heard an ad saying that the Coast Guard was looking for a lighthouse keeper. Not having anything better to do I went down and applied.

The Coast Guard having no better applicants hired me on as the Junior Keeper on Ivory Island. 

Now you know how a city boy got to live on the wild coast of Northern B.C..

It is a little harder to understand how natural and how right it was for me to be there.  I found out why I was always trying to get out of cities. Every fiber in my body and all of my spirit were screaming to me that I was where my people had always been happiest. I was on a coast with wind, waves, wilderness and the rhythms of our Mother to teach me. 

From Ivory we moved back to Vancouver where I managed about a week before starting to look for a way out. 

The way turned out to be as a deckhand on the United Church mission boat, The Thomas Crosby 5. More time on the wild north coast. 

This time I got to see nearly all of the north coast not just that part around Ivory. With the rest of the crew I was welcomed into almost every village and settlement on the north coast. 

Not because I was anything special but the Crosby and her Captain, the Rev. Oliver Howard were.  

I was put forward as the first (and only) intended candidate for the ministry from the Crosby. I ended up in  a village on the north coast being trained as a village pastor. 

There are more stories that could be told about the time I spent on the north coast but they are for another time. Perhaps I have told enough to help you understand why Tlakwagila Copperman’s art whispers to me.

When I look at it I smell the smoke rising from the houses. I hear the stories. I see the faces of the people and feel once again their love. 

I taste the salt and feel the wind. 

I see the wolf calmly sitting as I approach carrying my daughter. 

Eagles soar over me. 

Killer Whales swim under the skiff I’m in. 

I am once again where my spirit longs to be but my body will never return to. 

His art allows me to remember. 

I owe Tlakwagila Copperman a debt that I can never repay. Thankfully there is a partial payment that can be made.

I can join with him and others in the Clann of Mother Earth to help in the fight for our Mother.

Take a look at his work. If it whispers to your spirit too, perhaps you will join with us in the fight for our Mother. 

He fights in his way with art and stories. I fight with my blog.  There are many ways for you to join us and the others. 

One way is to join the Clann of Mother Earth and to share your gifts, courage and determination. 

Right now we are a very small clan. But if you and others from around the world will join with us we will grow. We will grow in numbers and in strength. 

Take care, stay safe,
The Old Man


2 comments on “The Life And Times Of The Old Man ~ Why The Art Of Tlakwagila Copperman Whispers To My Spirit

  1. As a child of the coast and descendant of First Nations these words touch me deeply. The ancestors connect with us in familiar places, we feel a connection deep in the soul and it lifts the spirit. We are all children of Mother Earth and these words confirm this for me. Thank you yong Old Man, TC


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