An oral storytelling tradition

Storytelling is an art, a skill, a talent passed down from generation to generation. It actually, was the very first medium for books. Verbal history is still valued today. Historians spend precious time with persons of interest to record their stories and memories of days past for posterity.

My father was an amazing storyteller. When I was a child we traveled around the United States most summers. I’ve often said, I learned more those summers as we traveled, than I ever did from a textbook. He would teach us about every animal and plant we saw or even the history of the place or geography as we camped from Maine to Colorado and more. (Yes, that’s me in the photo … )

I vividly remember him making up stories as we sat in the car waiting for my mother to grocery shop or put in a load of laundry at the laundromat. One that I remember with the most details was the “Butterman”. A wonderful character, made of butter, and all the adventures he had. When it was a hot day, he started to melt and had to solve that problem. Then someone or an animal tried to eat him and on and on his adventure went until Mom was finished with her errands.

So, many years later, I was blessed with grandchildren and it was a renewed joy to continue my father’s tradition of storytelling.

I would get the grandkids all washed up and ready for bed, then hunker them down around me, under quilts and many, many stuffed animals, and begin. They got to pick the place and the characters and I would develop an idea for the dilemma in the story and how the characters would solve the problem through an intriguing adventure!

Moonglow is my first attempt at storytelling on the printed page! I hope you enjoy the fantasy and the animals you’ll encounter on this amazing moonlit night.

Peggy with Paul Stoutenburgh

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