Tatanka, 2

Seven of Thirty

The human was folded. Scottish folded on Irish, on English; Apache folded on Hawaiian; country stock folded on city elite and female on male. There was no part of them you could call one thing. Still everything wanted to be one thing. From one place, of one single idea was the goal. And the ideas chased all others away, wanting to be the only thing on the plate, even if starvation ensued.
And the folds refused to merge, to become that next thing.

Dakotas carried names. They called these the black hills, and they called those the badlands. In older times, before the Europeans swept across with their heavy trudging tools and animals, making lines that crisscrossed the horizon, before then, they called it meat pack. The muscular piny ridges were filled with deer and elk, wood for winter fires, and water. It was a homeland, a place you returned to. And you called it something trusted, something loved.

But nothing named endured down in Picking Bulls belly when he thought of the land. This land he crouched on now, farther West, farther south, was larger and older than largeness and oldness. Instead, he could feel the earth pulling him to depths in his soul where words seemed a burden. Balance was all as he sat hunched in the grass, looking out on hills, invisible. In his breath and the smell of the clinging soil he kept his feet. The air around was fluid light, carrying only the responsibility of barrenness.

Jesse had laid out his weapons and his coffee in the teepee that morning, blessed blades next to brewed beans from his friends in the south, the gps node lying black and bean like next to his cup. He sat on his haunches on the buffalo blanket next to the low tray where she sat the tools, back erect and breathing. When he’d opened his eyes from meditation, she was gazing outside.

“Don’t let yourself get too cold.” She admonished. “You’re too old for cold. And the boys will need you for calving when you get back.”

He’d left her with an embrace, come to the southern edge of the hills with the smell of her hair fading too quickly.

Everything seemed beaten down here. The sun and wind had risen and fallen in twisting conflict over the rolling surface, leaving stubborn scars. There, where the hills curved up and the trees finally found purchase, there he sat waiting, the scrappy forest behind him and the plains laid out before him to the south. It was a natural demarcation that gave him some solidness, unlike the openness of the plains giving way to escarpments and wind carved arroyos farther south. He knew that was the only direction to go, either over or under the beast.

It lay across hundreds of kilometers, between mountains and river, a force fed structure of rail and highway, a giant snake. Kilometers wide and tall, sunrise to sunset, it framed the world and carried man. It’s large multi storied arches and walls leaped across the landscape, moving all types of vehicles and housing that living mass of people growing from, and supporting, it’s powerful limbs. They were apart. They were overarching, and they were lost.

And beyond them, to the south, where the lands layers thrust up in rustic colored lines from tales of eons and floods long past, there were geologic cycles that coursed and flowed as sure as his blood through his veins. The wind would call his soul out there and tell him of times past, an alluring whisper, until he could feel the earth begin to flow. Long ago he learned to yearn for this communion like nourishment.

So he would cross over into those poorer badlands. The visions would come and, in tears, he would give himself up. Whether the message they gave him to bring back imparted death or life he did not know, only that his people would follow.

When the shadows tilted east, and before he began to walk, he retied his boots and wondered whether he should clear more cactus this year. He needed to plant a larger crop of potatoes. Mouths were finding their way into his teepee.

Heart Like a Wheel

leavesOne of Thirty

How many days into autumn are we? Seems I started seeing the leaves fall a while ago. Now it’s October. Back when I was falling in love it was before the spring, When the green was starting, but short of the official okay of a date. It wasn’t April 21st then, like it’s not September 21st now. It’s October. We’re past the heat. Then, we were before. Any day I expect to hear the sound of leaf blowers. I think I have a rake in the shop.
Never liked the sound of those blowers. Never liked the harshness of it. At least around my house, things should be done by hand. The leaves that had done their duty should be met with some kind of honor of exertion. Yes, and honestly, I like the feel of the ache in my shoulders as I wade into the effort. I like the feel of the handle in my hands.
These days there’s a good chunk of people who don’t believe in rakes, who don’t believe in love. They’ll point out how it never lasts, how you’re blinded to peoples faults, how childish it is to dream. They’ll say you shouldn’t rely, you shouldn’t give up, you shouldn’t … you shouldn’t. And when the summer comes, they’ll tell you you’re tricked.
Still, you suck up the sun, lay on the beach, open up your arms and let it take you all in. Regardless of what they say, you still do it. It’s because this stodgy goo that is our everyday perception wants to jump. It wants to move and dance and fly, to be away from this sameness, to hunger for the other -and feed.
They’ll say there’s more than one, that it isn’t just the heat of the sun, but the smell of the flowers -just like in the greenhouse – or not the warmth of the day -just like what you can get from the fireplace. They’ll say that to be balanced and healthy you have to enjoy everything.
But more than anything, they’ll say that, once again, you’re wrong. That to be normal and healthy, like everybody else, you have to do what they say. Don’t love.
But These leaves keep falling.
Wrong doesn’t matter. Wrong doesn’t care. Wrong is it’s own kind of glory, like those leaves. They did their duty, with no one telling them it wasn’t worth it. There’s cycles to this. Giving into what you want, letting go of all the should-of-beens, it’s kind of all the same thing. And with each pull of the rake the body remembers.
It’s like those nightmares. Have you ever had those nightmares where you’re falling and there’s nothing there to catch you? The kind where only dying is at the end. And if they last … yeah, I know, crazy. If the terror lasts, right? But if they last, if you let go of the fear and turn in your dreaming eye, … if you can do that, you’ll find
… you’re flying.
And the seasons turn and the wheel creaks. It’s the cycle, it’s the circle of things that we’re made for … not to measure up to someone else’s description of better or best. And the honor and attention that we give to these falling bits of ourselves, and the thrill of the wind tearing it all down in a sudden … all of that required a beginning.
“If you’re brave enough, often enough, you will fall.” – Brene Brown
And the leaves are everywhere.

30 Days, 30 Posts for Hugo House. Help me pick the topics

Priest30 days, 30 posts.

Seen this yet? During October, I’m raising funds for my fav writing space: Hugo House​.

First off, if you want to write, write more, go here.

Second off, enjoy dabreez, and maybe during this next month, drop some cake here.

Third, before you’re off. If you want to help me choose topics for posts, here’s some in the list below: drop me a comment (here or on FB) on which ones you want and I’ll work it up.

  1. Who Watches the Watchers – watchmen’s blues – or stepping away from suffering, like revolution, sometimes its required.
  2. The Children of the Interpreters – the new job, holding space for people who don’t think like us.
  3. The Atheists Creed – why atheists and humanism are so important to the faithful.
  4. Zen mind, Zen Bank Account.
  5. A Little Bit of Crazy – why Ecstasy is so important.
  6. Touch Me There – the fine art of walking out of the labyrinth that is ourselves, as told by a drunken meanderer.
  7. The Farmers Blow.
  8. Her. The Real Goddess Down the Dark Street, or why we need Aunties.
  9. Why falling in Love is Like Dying. Why it’s required.
  10. Salish Sequins, the cost of a colonial mulligan.
  11. The Hero’s journey is the Hero’s job. Making mythbuilt.
  12. The Rational Pagan.
  13. Where the Lines Are. The Nordic in Scotland. Racial myths, Or why I’m different (better) than you.
  14. Where the Boys Are, when coming out means coming in, fiddlers delight and the street simple.
  15. The Slacker Rebellion: why happiness is overblown, and how I learned to relax and love the growler.
  16. The Hard Body Type. Practicing breaking through walls and staying soft.
  17. The Line Between Empire and Rebel. How the typecast sucks when applied to self. Just say no.
  18. When Life Isn’t Turn Based. Oh yeah, like all the time, getting to all the time.
  19. A Feeling Called the Blues. My first Chord.
  20. Monkey Mind and Lizard Tales, why the forgiveness gene is important.
  21. Waiting for the Fire Eaters.
  22. Epigenetics and the Battle for Evermore..
  23. Salish Drums and Flip Flops.
  24. The Sheets Journal, coming out on top.
  25. The Green Way, more Shaman than witch, more scientist than cowboy.
  26. Roll Down, sexing it up in the Mississippi mud.
  27. The Green Way, making a trail, taking a walk, and riding a bike into the heart of darkness.
  28. New skins, Old Ways, Bet you weren’t ready for that.
  29. Came Marching, skipping out on seminary in the days of disco.
  30. The One You Won’t Tell Your Friends About.
  31. Stacking Up the Greens, calling bullshit on the disaster drivers.