The frog on the face of the moon represents DOLUANW – the Keeper of the Sacred Season. It is time to gather food & medicine. The W̱SÁNEĆ People place cedar boughs at the shore so herring will lay roe on them.
CONNECTIONS AND BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The W̱SÁNEĆ People designated this month to sacredness and purification.
For the W̱SÁNEĆ Peoples, this moon, in particular, is significant because the frog acts as a witness and a messenger. The frog announced the Sacred Season of Plenty. Because the frog was honoured as the Keeper of the Sacred Season, it was often presented on totem poles and in artwork to show that an important event had occurred.
During this moon, the wonder of nature repeats an amazing process: Mother Earth warms up and the hibernating frog wakes from its winter sleep, announcing the coming of spring.
As the Northern Hemisphere moves closer to the Sun, the more the Earth warms. Rains diminish and more sunshine is evident.
This moon was especially welcomed because it signalled that the ocean had become safer to travel on and it was time to put the canoes back into the water. Herring and herring roe, a source of food, were collected by placing cedar branches along the shore for the herring to lay their eggs upon. Herring was also dried into a delicacy called QELEJ and stored for future use. The earliest runs of herring were in Fulford Harbour on Saltspring Island.
The appearance of the frog was a sign to end the activities of Winter ceremonial dances and move outdoors to prepare for the season when the Salmon people would return.
THINGS TO THINK ABOUT
- Who or what do you honour in your life?
- What signals does nature give us to start or end things?
- In what ways do you and your family prepare for spring?