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From: "Clifford Drane" <dranec@hotmail.com>
Subject: (urth) Tracking Song haunts me
Date: Sat, 11 Dec 1999 21:36:12 CST

I keep thinking about the story "The Tracking Song", enough to search the 
Urth lists for insight. This seems to be one of the most obscure Wolfe tales 
- I have an idea that doesn't exactly explain many details, but might be a 
start of another way of thinking about the story. I tend to shoot from the 
hip, get excited about a theory (see my infrequent posting) to then see it 
shot down. I submit myself to the firing squad once again. :)

I think The Tracking Song could be a story about the origins of an aborigine 
myth, not told in the way an elder tells a youngster a story to explain 
Creation or somesuch belief. But told as if the myth truly happened, from 
the first person WITHOUT completely reducing the magic to science (that's 
the key). I recall Mailer's Ancient Evenings, and the very detailed 
retelling of the main story behind the Egyptian mythos - how details were 
told without destroying or explaining away the magic. Also, if any of you 
saw the animated version of Watership Down - the brilliant prelude which 
tails the tail of Creation from the standpoint of rabbits (ok, so who got 
that pun?). The "realities" in each of those stories were interwoven with 
the myth - and I think we're encountering Gene's version of this with the 
typical omitted-detail-method-of-telling-a-story-by-not-telling-a-story that 
is his calling card.

I think Tracking Song could be taking us inside a world that still lives in 
the mythological. I also think trying to find an American Indian (or other 
culture) parallel myth is a red herring.

Blindfold, please. :)


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