Andrew and the Feather
Andrew loved to visit his Grandpa Edwards’ house in the summer. His grandpa lived two hours away in a huge house in the country. Andrew liked to go exploring and play outdoors. His most favorite thing to do was spend time with his grandpa, and listen to his stories from when he was a kid.
“Well Grandpa, I’m getting older this year, I’ll be eight in July,” Andrew said.
“I remember when I was your age,” Grandpa said. “I’ll never forget the day I found out who I really was.”
“What do you mean, Grandpa?” Andrew asked.
“Well, you know how you loved exploring and imagining that you are a cowboy, or a firefighter? Well I had always imagined I was a Native American when I was little. When I was seven, my grandfather gave me a beautiful white feather. It was very special. The feather came from an eagle that lived near the Cherokee Indian village. The eagle lived on a tall cliff called Majestic Peak.”
“Why did they call it Majestic Peak?” Andrew asked.
“Well, in the early morning the eagle would circle high above the peak. While he was soaring he looked as if he was flying in the clouds.
The sun reflected off of the morning’s dew and made the peak seem to touch the sky. The eagle soared majestically over the peak. He was so peaceful to watch. The Cherokee Indians began to notice his grace and beauty and named him u-wo’-du wo-ha’-li, meaning beautiful eagle. U-wo’-du wo-ha’-li soared high and watched over the village. He kept them safe and informed them when danger was near. He was their protector. That is why this feather has so much meaning. It tells the story of my life and who I am,” Grandpa explained. “I never imagined that I was a Native American until that day. All of the days that I spent at my grandfather’s house playing cowboys and Indians with my cousin was so much fun. We used to carry our bow and arrows around that we made from twine and tree limbs.”
Grandpa paused and looked at me.
“I’m going to take you to Majestic Peak today,” he said. “You’re going to see where your family’s from and why this feather explains our family history.”
Later that day we arrived at Majestic Peak. It was beautiful. It was everything that Grandpa Edward had said. The cliff was embraced by the night’s dew and the falling sun reflected off of it. An eagle then appeared soaring around the village. A feather dropped from the eagle and I caught it. Of all of the years that the Cherokee people lived next to Majestic Peak the eagles have raised generation of little eaglets! The Cherokee people and the eagles live together in harmony, and they protect one another from harm. The Native Americans and the eagles were a family. They understood each other. As the Cherokee raised their young, so did the eagles. Their children grew up together and grew stronger in one another’s strengths. The eagles grew to trust and protect the Cherokee people.
“The eagle feather represents who we are and what we believe in. It is the courage and strength that both the eagles and the Cherokee people brought to one another. They live their lives in peace and harmony, and that is what our family has grown to be,” Grandpa said.
“That was a day I will never forget,” Andrew said. “I learned about myself and my heritage and I will pass the legend of the feather on to many generations to come.” -e-