I knew that he would follow me into the Land of Souls. He wouldn’t be willing to let me die so quickly. I looked out for him after I crossed over. And there he was, riding on the great lake in his own stone canoe.
How he had been able to leave his body behind, I did not know, but he rode with me over the waters. Together we looked down through the lake and saw spirits whose boats had sunk, who were dead and drowning.
We rode, unhurt, to the Happy Island where we knew no hunger or thirst. The air fed us and the sun warmed us. We forgot the dead for we saw no graves. Our thoughts never turned to wars or hunting animals. We would have walked together forever, but in the murmur of the wind, he was summoned. The Master of Life called him back.
He was the Chief, after all, and there was still work for him to do in the Land of Snow.
Chief’s Dead Wife in In the Land of Souls, Yellow Fairy Book. Painting “Isle of the Dead,” by Arnold Bocklin.