Tuesday, June 1, 2010


May 28. A young woman called to request a moon ceremony at Annie's so I didn't go to pow-wow or spend the night at Chey's. We (4) gathered for a woman circle and were supremely blessed. The fireflies were out, too. It was lovely. The preparation is nearly as important to me as the ceremonial part. Because Dana was new to the woman circle there was a lot of explanation and it was good for Geezis to hear it again. After we opened and closed the four doors I invited all to share some final words of closure and it so enriched the experience. Afterwards we went inside to eat together and smoke Annie's pipe.
When Justice was little he'd be waiting for us so we could all eat together. He'd fling his small arms around me. He'd look up in near rapture and tell me, "Oh, Gramma, you always smell so good when you come back from ceremony." It was as though I'd been gone to a far place for a long time. I got home about 2 AM.
This morning we went to Grand Rapids for camper stuff so we could take Moby to his first pow-wow camp. He also got a new license plate and insurance so he is ready to roll!

May 29. I went to LL PW with Annie and kids. We took Moby. Annie's father had saved a space for her to park so we had a family community. Annie made the first PW breakfast in Moby. Then we dressed, signed up to dance and joined the Grand Entry at 12:30. There were over 900 dancers! It was fun to find old friends and meet new ones. I danced with a young man from PA and my inner voice told me it was time too let my seven feather necklace go. So I gave it to him with a brief explanation. I forgot to tell him that it was strung on a special lace from shoes I'd worn for a peace march in Wash DC. I'll probably never see him again but those 7 bones carry my breath, good wishes and prayers for his well-being.
We left before pay-out and rode home under a bright moon.

May 30. I returned to CL in my car, picked up Gene and Chey and went to PW camp. We danced all day. I took more photos today and danced many rounds with Darlene Ogema, Marcellus' other great-granny. After it got cold I went back to camp and sat at the fire with Avis and Violet.
In early afternoon there had been a sneak-up dance and no one was really exceptional. I thought, "Where is Sylvester Shotley? He could show us how it's done." Soon the MC announced that Sylvester had been hospitalized and air lifted to Mpls hospital. There was an honor dance for him and the arena filled as dancers were joined by spectators who know him.
There was a give-away to honor Moon Roberts, too. He was a beautiful and gifted young man who took his own life a few weeks after Brandon was murdered.

May 31. I stayed at Chey's and slept late. Then we made a picnic and went to the cemetery to eat at Brandon's grave. There was Wallis, Lamaya, Chey, Gene, Ten-Ten and me. Lamaya ran the affair. She helped spread the table (sheet), put out the food, prepared the spirit dish for her father (Brandon), put down the blankets for seating and even helped refill the plates! Wallis and I returned to Deer River exhausted but pleased with a wonderful extended weekend.

June 1. I've been away from Mae Sarton's journal of her 70th year but on May 28 she wrote about the brevity of life and the joy of spring. "But I have at most 10 or 15 springs! Is that possible? Almost a lifetime gone. On the other side though, what I do have is 70 springs in my head, and they flow back with all their riches now!" It was a gloomy Memorial Day weekend for her, "without a gleam of sunlight."
On our return from CL yesterday Wallis pointed out how the fern stood under the trees along the road like little people. Yes, I thought, how quickly they unfurled and opened their green umbrellas. We had missed the fiddlehead stage. I was going to pick fiddleheads with Cedar. Now it's too late.
Just a few days ago I could see far into the forest and count the tree trunks. Now the heavy foliage veils them completely. Wild mustard spreads it's cheery notes along the road... like a nearly forgotten song of spring.

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