Monday, November 18, 2013

"all dreams spin out from the web of life....."

 " For we did not weave the web of life.
We are merely a strand in it.
Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.
Let us give thanks for the web and the circle that connects us.
  — Chief Seattle,

       My mother had a great appreciation and love for Native American history and culture. At four or five years of age I recall being completely captivated by gigantic glossy photographs in beautifully bound books outlining North American tribes, locations and customs. Mom was proud of her Choctaw heritage on my grandfathers side. The same blood which warmly ran through her veins, now rushes through me and flows through my brothers and sisters. We have lovingly embraced her unique qualities and calm demeanor. We see with her piercing eyes, we share her profile, her gentle smile and  move with the womanly curve of her hips. We hear her laughter and the sound of her voice when we sing. We feel the caressing clasp of her hand when we dance. We feel her breathe renewed hope into our weary lungs after the cruel world knocks out the wind. We have been softly spun from her delicate web of life.

     My entire childhood was spent absorbed with wanting to learn. There was a voracious appetite for attempting to unravel the fascinating mysteries of human existence- religion, philosophy, our planet and the universe were subjects I wanted to know- needed to know. Both of my parents and older siblings created an environment that fostered a love of reading and curiosity. Having access to libraries, diverse literature, three sets of encyclopedias and an unrestricted tolerance of evolving ideas is an experience I'm beyond grateful for having early in my life.

  Upon discovering the following poem by Native American poet Mary Tall Mountain it reminded me that our mother's web of love lives on inside all of us, forever connecting my brothers and sisters. The poem is dedicated to all of those who have lost a loved one much too soon. Look inside your heart. Remember, we're held together by the greatest everlasting bond and in many cultures and languages in the world,  "There is No Word for Goodbye"    

“There Is No Word for Goodbye” 
  by  Mary Tall Mountain from The Light on the Wall.
Sokoya, I said, looking through
the net of wrinkles into the
wise black pools of her eyes.
What do you say in Athabascan
when you leave each other?
What is the word
for goodbye?
A shade of feeling rippled  
the wind-tanned skin.
Ah, nothing, she said,
watching the river flash.

She looked at me close.
We just say, Tlaa. That means,
"See you."
We never leave each other.
When does your mouth
say goodbye to your heart?
She touched me light
as a bluebell.
You forget when you leave us;
you're so small then.
We don't use that word.
 We always think you're coming back,
but if you don't,
we'll see you some place else.
You understand.
There is no word for goodbye.

-with love, peace and gratefulness that we will share  our Thanksgiving together.