And there it is: the story of how Moose got her name. It’s not just that she’s big and strong for a girl, and rather blunt and straightforward. Or rather, that’s not all it is. From Moose’s point of view, this story is more or less a secret. I was trying to suggest in the last panel that we are reading notes in her Private Notebook. The brushwork lettering and the place where it is replaced by my standard round nib lettering, were meant to suggest a dream– that Moose herself is not sure whether she is recording the memory of a dream, or something more substantial. Regardless, it is an important story to her and I am very glad she let me read it and share it with you in comics form.
“Mushawasing” is an invented name based on some Algonquian/Algonkian word lists and modeled on real world Midwestern creek names like Kokosing (Owl Creek, in Ohio) and Lycoming (Creek with a Sandy Bottom, in Pennsylvania). The official maps of Kekionga do show the name as Mushawasing Creek, but we all know better now.
To read a much longer prose story from Moose’s Private Notebook, check out Spider Time here.