Monday, April 27, 2009
Last week the Lady Friend and I paid a short visit to Silverton, Michigan, where we stood on the beach and captured this shot of the Wolverine Mountains, the big wilderness state park on the shore of Lake Superior that is anchored by a two-billion-year-old, 1,958-foot-high, 12-mile-long copper-bearing escarpment. The range was named for the sleeping animal the Lakota, original inhabitants of the area, saw in its shape.
Most of that is in my imagination, of course. In reality the photo is of the Porcupine Mountains, named for that animal by the Ojibwe, who chased out the Lakota more than 300 years ago -- and it was the beach of Silver City where we stood. In my Porcupine County mysteries I have changed names in order to be able to take liberties with locale necessary for plot advancement. (Mystery readers are very touchy about accuracy.)
What do you see in the photograph? A sleeping wolverine or a recumbent porcupine? It doesn't matter. In truth those mountains are wild and gorgeous, and they are full of wolves, bears, deer and eagles as well as porcupines and, yes, wolverines. And, of course, the missing and the murdered. These mountains contain many buried secrets, and as a mystery novelist I have just begun to mine them.
Click on the photo for a larger version.