“I had two dreams about him after he died. I dont remember the first one all that well but it was about meetin him in town somewheres and he give me some money and I think I lost it. But the second one it was like we was both back in older times and I was on horseback goin through the mountains of a night. Goin through this pass in the mountains. It was cold and there was snow on the ground and he rode past me and kept on goin. Never said nothin. He just rode on past and he had this blanket wrapped around him and he had his head down and when he rode past I seen he was carryin fire in a horn the way people used to do and I could see the horn from the light inside of it. About the color of the moon. And in the dream I knew that he was goin on ahead and that he was fixin to make a fire somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold and I knew that whenever I got there he would be there. And then I woke up.” ? Cormac McCarthy, No Country for Old Men
Many Native American peoples developed technology and traditions so they could carry fire from one place to another. The Pikunii people of the western Great Plains and Rocky Mountain Front used fire carriers made of buffalo horns to carry burning coals from one camp to the next and to start a fire in the new camp. This was very helpful for the people as they arrived in the new camp, but the fire also served another important purpose: The fire provided spiritual and cultural continuity for the people because the same fire was used in one camp after another, even while the people traveled thousands of miles in their yearly migrations.
“the fire in the horn” – a nest of sparks carried in a cow or buffalo horn to help facilitate the starting of a campfire whenever the traveller arrives at the destination at the end of each day. A thing that is tended, protected in one’s travels, and is never allowed to go out.
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