FOLKLORE / AGES 6-9
The forest was full of shadows and stillness, and the hills were empty. Tunuri knew then that he was far away from his family . . . he was lost!
Then something caught his eye. A deer was walking toward him. As the animal grew closer, Tunuri knew that this was no ordinary deer, for his coat was a lovely deep blue--and he glowed all over, as if the sun or moon shone from inside him.
As he came near, the magical Blue Deer spoke. “Hello, Tunuri. I know you are lost and I know where your family is. Grandfather Fire has sent me to show you where you can find them. You must follow me--and hurry, so they won’t miss you!”
So begins Tunuri’s journey with the magical Blue Deer. This tale, rooted in the beliefs of the Huichol Indians of mountainous western Mexico, introduces children to our family in nature--Grandfather Fire, Father Sun, Mother Earth, Brother Wind, and Sister Water--and all that they share with the people of this planet.
Illustrating the text are traditional Huichol yarn drawings created especially for this book--a visual feast of color, detail, and sacred symbolic images. Also included are a glossary of these symbols, information on the Huichol people, and a complete description, in words and photographs, of how the yarn drawings were made.
JAMES ENDREDY, author of Earthwalks for Body and Spirit, has been an honored guest of the Huichol since 1986 and is actively working toward the protection of their traditional culture and sacred sites. Dedicated to reconnecting people with the spirit of nature, he presents workshops and classes in the United States, Mexico, and Canada. He lives in Pennsylvania.
MARIA HERNANDEZ DE LA CRUZ lives in a small village within the San Andreas ceremonial center in the Huichol Sierra. A highly accomplished artist, she began making yarn drawings as a child. Long before starting work on this book, she had a dream vision of Tunuri while on a pilgrimage to the sacred desert of Wirikuta--and thus was not at all surprised when asked to illustrate this story.
CASIMIRO DE LA CRUZ LOPEZ comes from a village near the ceremonial center of Santa Catarina in the Huichol Sierra, where he spends much of his time helping his father, who has been the elected spiritual leader of their community for many years. While doing much of the yarn work for this story alongside María, Casimiro was also instrumental in translating the author’s and Maria’s visions into two-dimensional images.