This is an essay about immigration, belonging, memory, nature, and indigenous culture — all wrapped up in the mystery of one teepee. This beautifully written piece will make you reflect on what belongs where and also simply make you want to take a walk in the woods.
The teepee was a mystical thing. A tall, triangular structure with a round base that sat on a clearing in the valley of the forest, right beneath a rock formation that’s been around since a glacier retreated during the last ice age, and just south of the caves where the Lenape, the Native Americans who originally lived on this land, are said to have made their seasonal camps. That was centuries before the land came to be known as Inwood Hill Park.