The One Thing

There were many times when Nelson would sit in his chair when all the kids were gone and speculate how he ended up teaching on the reservation. On long days, when all the lesson plans were done, he’d lean back and begin dreaming. One particularly warm day, as he closed his eyes, instead of the usual flying dreams he had,…

There’s No Place Like Home

There are days in my life that I suffer flashbacks from childhood. Memories of growing up in the big, white stucco house located in the center of town. The only house in Pine Ridge guarded twenty-four hours a day by a huge ceramic German Shepard permanently resting on top of the cracked cement porch. He has sat there so long…

Sundance for All My Relations

I stomp my brown feet in the red desert sands then claw my way down a pine covered mountain to bathe in a misty shroud of morning and listen as the Great Mystery thunders out another universal warning   How will our little ones survive till tomorrow if the womb of the Earth Mother is thrashed and sprawled creating the…

Sister’s Giveaway

You could have worn the black stripe Pendleton yourself if you’d come down to Oklahoma to get named in the Quaker church in Hominy.   All of us cousins on trust land with our Morrell relatives near Pettit Street named for our family. Uncle Preston slumped on the cracked leather sofa, the eagle wing fan clacking when he lifted his…

My First Bowling Plaque

The sunlight blazed brightly through the thin, white curtains of the motel room, piercing the darkness. Drowsy from the night before, the anticipation of the day’s upcoming events consumed my thoughts. I glanced over to the table by the window to see Rainie sitting there looking out into the cool Montana morning, sipping on a cup of coffee. The dust…

How the Rainbow Was Created

Long ago, a great warrior and his wife were expecting their first child. The couple had longed for a son, but had difficulty conceiving. One night, before the child was to be born, Anog-Ite (Double Face Woman) paid the couple a visit to confess a secret she kept. Many nights, the spirits listened to them lament for a son. Because…

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…

Somewhere in the Fog

I was lost and trying to get home There was a heavy cool thickness clouding visibility Silhouettes walked out of the dark greyness into the light that surrounded my every step and move People, and faces peering out through the windblown thickness of the fog Each looking at me as if I knew what to do Their faces pleading, “take…

A Prayer for Piestewa

We fought for our land We fought for our survival   Today they told us that We, were the warriors modern day heroes armed with education every group of people need some education in order to succeed, but one thing they forgot to mention was that some would still pick up a gun in the name of freedom. This poem…