NMU Center for Native American Studies Professor Martin Reinhardt is featured in a YES! Magazine article on the abundant varieties of fungi that can be foraged in the wild and what they symbolize to Indigenous cultures. Reinhardt said the Anishinaabemowin term for mushroom is “papowii,” which means “to swell up in stature suddenly and silently from an unseen source of power.”
According to the article, that power could be the expression of collective energy derived from the memorialization of a seemingly ended life, and humans can find the same energy transfer from the Ancestors.
"Reinhardt connects these commonalities as he remembers harvesting Morels with his late father," writer Valerie Segrest explained. "They'd carefully clean them before panfrying the mushrooms in butter with salt and pepper. Reinhardt still goes out in search of Indigenous Oysters, Chanterelles and Boletes, but he says he just doesn't spot Morels like his dad did. 'I always enjoyed the taste of fresh Morel mushrooms, but I think I enjoyed the time I spent with my dad even more.'"
Read the full story here.