The name and story for my painting came from Marny Barnes http://www.redbubble.com/people/mb543210. Thank you.
The aurora borealis has intrigued people from ancient times, and still does today. The Eskimos and Indians of North America have many stories to explain these northern lights.
One story is reported by the explorer Ernest W. Hawkes in his book, The Labrador Eskimo:
The ends of the land and sea are bounded by an immense abyss, over which a narrow and dangerous pathway leads to the heavenly regions. The sky is a great dome of hard material arched over the Earth. There is a hole in it through which the spirits pass to the true heavens. Only the spirits of those who have died a voluntary or violent death, and the Raven, have been over this pathway. The spirits who live there light torches to
guide the feet of new arrivals. This is the light of the aurora. They can be seen there feasting and playing football with a walrus skull. The whistling crackling noise which sometimes accompanies the
aurora is the voices of these spirits trying to communicate with the people of the Earth. They should always be answered in a whispering voice. Youths dance to the aurora. The heavenly spirits are called selamiut, “sky-dwellers,” those who
live in the sky.
I started this last Christmas but didn’t finish it until now. Boy I need to stop leaving unfinished paintings on my computer, you should see how many there are! I lose interest if it takes me too long to paint something, that’s a very bad habit I need to work on.