Noodin and Giizhik

There once was a pup that belonged to a large pack of ma’iinganag (wolves), he was called Noodin (wind) because he wandered like the wind. He was covered in dark tan fur with black on his back. Noodin wandered around the forest, wherever his nose led him. He was a loner and had a bad temper. Sometimes, Noodin revealed a…

The Coming of Big Foot

There was once a young man named Strikes Twice. He was at the edge of the village chopping wood when he heard a cry coming from a forbidden part of the woods. No human was ever to cross through this forbidden area. The piercing scream startled him, it almost sounded like a baby, and he felt that he had to…

They don’t know where they will go when they die. Ho’-wa ge a-the ta i te ts’a-bi-don i-ba-hon a-zhi a-ba o.

The day the death boats came, Meena helped me serve the noon meal. She was the only other Osage at Edwards, and she’d been there for a week. When the steam whistle sounded, we went up the slope behind the mission to the Cherokee, to the small knob along the Arkansas River. Asmell like the privies in summer made Meena…

The Rez Cat M

Mosi often remembers his past when his ears start twitching. He goes day to day sleeping most of the time. There isn’t much to do in a kennel anyway. He hears his fellow felines rub against their wire cages wanting to go free. Being on death row didn’t matter anymore. He sought peace now. A flicker of hope arrived when…

Overcoming

Hello everyone, I am a young man who struggled and yet lived a good life in this world. I want to tell you my story of overcoming what I was born with. First, I want to tell you how it all began. I was born in the winter and yes, it was cold. When I came into this world there…

Sourtoe

I got the phone call I’d been dreading. The woman at the nursing home told me it was almost time, that my Auntie Edith was about to die. Of course, she didn’t say “die,” that word being too raw, too final. She told me Edith hadn’t been able to eat anything for days and had started holding her arm up…

Forgive Me

Beth stood in the middle of the Mojave, her eyes cast up towards what she’d always considered an abysmal, black sky. But now in the silence of the desert, galaxies revealed themselves just beyond her icy touch. She didn’t dare blink for fear of missing a single second of a sky that seemed to beckon to her. Her body heaved,…

In Our Blood

The powwow grounds were bitter, only a handful of dancers and a couple drums brought in the Grand Entry remained. It was a shame to find that it wasn’t a celebration anymore, more like going through the motions of being an Indian. Although it was a powwow, the younger generations of on lookers were oblivious to what “used to be;”…

Of Missionaries and Indian Loggers

“You’re ugly.” A small girl, perhaps three years old, tells him as he walks past a rusty swing set. “Why?” he asks, genuinely curious. “Your skin is brown.” She responds. It’s true. Though his mom is light skinned, he could never be mistaken for anything other than Native on the basis of looks. His father’s brown skin out raced his…

Silence

In the end, it was the silence that told him more than any word ever could’ve hoped. The thick shag of the hotel carpet dulled the thud of his bare feet as he paced the room for what seemed to be the thousandth time that long and lonesome night. His quick, successive breaths seemed to echo off the hotel walls…