Shopping cart is empty.

Birchbark Blog

Thank You, Pilgrims

Louise Erdrich - Sunday, November 22, 2009
Thank you, Pilgrims!

No, not buckle pilgrims -- book pilgrims.

 Our little bookstore would never survive without the Pilgrims who come to visit us from every part of the world.  Thank you for coming to visit us.  Thank you for drinking coffee at the Kenwood Cafe.  Thank you for sitting in the reading chairs and for telling us how and why you came to Birchbark Books.  Thank you for sharing the green stuff that lubricates the wheels of civilization.  Over the summer and fall, we've have visitors from Italy, Canada, China, Germany, England, Nigeria, Ireland, Turkey, Sweden, Japan, Romania, Mississippi, North Dakota, and Maple Grove, Minnesota, from the nations of Leech Lake, Red Lake, White Earth, Turtle Mountain, Pine Ridge, Rosebud, and ICELAND ( !), to name just a few locales where literati decide that when visiting Minneapolis they will find Birchbark Books.

It is always such a pleasure to find out how and why people arrive at the blue Birchbark door (blue to resist evil spirits).  Often they have been dragged in by a relative, it is true.  But that relative has a love of books and little bookstores, and passes this on.  Many times the next generation is imbued with the spirit of the place.  We have children who have grown up reading such books as A Coyote Solstice Tale, by Thomas King, pictures by Gary Clement.  The perfect book to read in the Birchbark Loft.  This is a wonderful coyote sweet and funny book, a gentle anti-Christmas craziiness story that resonated with me and will, I think, with every mother and father whose children's visions of sugar plums require them to visit a crowded mall.  It made me want to drink hot chocolate and curl up with a good book.

I plan on curling up (again) with Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive, Decolonizing Botanical Anishinaabe Teachings, by Wendy Makoons Geniusz.   This book is several things at once: a primer on truth, an innovative Anishinabe-English language text, a grand discussion of what has been already written about Anishinabe use of plants, and a delightful act of love.   Decolonized knowledge of the world allows a person access to the entire range of human experience of nature -- from use to song to dream to dance.  This work is eye-opening and joyous .  And it is one of my favorite books of the year.   
Comments
Johanna Garcia commented on 28-Nov-2009 07:00 PM
Dear Louise,
I haven't seen you in almost 9 years. I know because that's how old our youngest children are. I wanted you to know that my students are once again (it's irreplaceable, as far as I am concerned) reading Birchbark House and loving it. I am so grateful as a teacher (I teach lower grades now) to have this book to accompany my students in their leap into literacy. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Greet Persia for me,
Johanna Garcia
Marta commented on 27-Dec-2009 03:44 PM
You've also had a visitor from Poland. Even though I live n Berlin, I come from Poland. Hope you enjoyed the book I have left for you in the bookstore. Smiles!
Janet commented on 29-Dec-2009 11:22 AM
And then there are the customers who live in a not so sexy locale, someplace like Minneapolis.
Anonymous commented on 05-Jan-2010 02:49 PM
You missed counting me also. I visited the store in July and I'm from France, although an American who has lived in France for 35 years. This fall I even gave a talk on "The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse" to my book club made up of French women who had never heard about Louise Erdrich and had little knowledge of Native Americans. It was a success!
Barbara Carlier
Harriett commented on 18-Nov-2012 09:13 AM
Like everyone else, I tried unsuccessfully to parse this book over several days. But I devoured it in 24 hours. I always feel guilty when I consume so quickly a great work such as yours that was created over a period of years. I feel greedy, but happily so. Whenever I run across a familiar name (Nanapush, Lamartine) my heart fills with joy and opens up and a it's like a butterfly flies out. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Post a Comment!

Canoe Family

Recent PostsRSS


Tags

Nero Dartmouth Ice city of books S.C. Gwynne Remarkable Trees Milkweed Press Too Loud A Solitude 350.org Kabul Peak Water William Trevor Jim Harrison Keystone XL Mohamed's Ghosts ireland twins china ptsd favorite dog Population Poetry Greenland Education President Obama favorite tree World on the Edge fresh water italy Guthrie Theater Native People The Resilient Gardener knowledge Bleak House Hillary Clinton Rare Books The Transition Handbook adventure Aza Master Butchers Singing Club aquifer Chitra Divakaruni Islam green Wolf Hall Anishinabe peculiar touches of green and gold devoted customers Gryphon Press Small Bookstores as Commons graphix customers neighborhood Hilary Mantel 2666 Let's Take the Long Way Home Birchbark Books Gary Clement coyote Beth Dooley support Native Arts Czech Writer Light in August japan the most romantic city in the world buffalo Brown Dog Women and Trees Magers and Quinn Makoons Canada Tar Sands Kenwood Gardens Pembina favorite book how good looking you are Wendy Makoons Geniusz The Ojibwe The Wealth of Nature Anton Treuer The Round House The Blue Sky spring Afghanistan Catalyst Interview Ha Jin The Birchbark House book and dinner club friends cafe post holiday germany language revitalization Patrick O'Brian monkey in a dryer Unnatural Disasters Keeping Heart on Pine Ridge This Green World Green Team health care reform Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive incarnation Gail Caldwell Ojibwemowin Dogs joy E.L. Doctorow Alice Munro photography sweden solstice, Thomas King Peak Oil School Gardens Crushing Books Bill Moyers Journal Too Much Happiness bill mckibben thanks trees tree books Roberto Bolano thank you friends Nemesis Vic Glover Book Review Mankato Powwow Video Minneapolis north dakota Collective Denial birchbark house series Botany More Remarkable Trees france euphoria Kate DiCamillo Wastepaper The Royal Prussian Library Climate Change National Book Award post holiday reads ependent Easter Island Emily Johnson Zombies show your love The Porcupine Year Louise Stephen Salisbury Chickadee boarding school The Farmer's Daughter Love Bohumil Hrabal Victory Gardens Up Late Again State Troopers gratitude Philip Roth Tree Houses Aubrey/Maturin plants Ojibwe Alan Weisman Minnesota local economy Anishinabemowin H2Oil anniversary Keepers of the Trees gardens The Game of Silence mississippi leaves and snow NACDI:All My Relations Empire of the Summer Moon Michael Jackson pilgrims Fireworks British Navy cafe closing

Archive