Thunder Speaking

by bern.harrison
by bern.harrison

Microfiction

Two weeks after Thunder Speaking came to their village, Standing on the Mountain had a dream he would never forget. At first he saw a picture of Thunder Speaking’s horse, the black and white stallion. The horse was running, and was as wild as ever, but then he heard the horse’s voice. He did not know how the horse was talking but he was for sure.

The horse began telling him about Thunder Speaking, and why he left his home. He also saw pictures of the man. He could see him leaving his village, where almost no one lived anymore. The people of the village had been killed by a series of wars, and by poison water, given to the people by traders from the coast. He saw people sick, and dying, and others walking into the woods never to return. Thunder Speaking had left the ghost village with a sick heart and in despair. The horse explained all this to Standing on the Mountain, as he watched the pictures in the dream.

Thunder Speaking walked about three weeks until reaching the great mountains. The man decided to go into them, even though he realized he may not be able to find his way, and that he may never come out again. After wandering in the mountains for a week, and getting more lost each day, the horse was sent to Thunder Speaking, in order to help him. Standing on the Mountain could see the man lost in the great mountains vividly. He did not ask who had sent the horse to Thunder Speaking, he just watched the vision and listened.

The dream continued, and Thunder Speaking called to the horse and they spoke to one another. Thunder Speaking was very gentle, and he got on the horse as if they had been friends a long time. The horse easily led them out of the great mountains, in just a few days, and they traveled another month. They hunted together and Thunder Speaking began to heal inside. He was an excellent hunter. Everything went well until the wolves attacked, early one morning after their fire went out, and the sun was beginning to rise.

They fought hard, they both did. The horse knew that there was something wrong with these wolves. They were sick in their bodies, and in the minds. There was nothing they could do but fight to survive. Many of the attackers were killed, but then Thunder Speaking fell down a ravine and broke his arm. The few remaining attackers fled, and then the horse went down into the ravine, and helped the man to wake up. The horse got on the ground to help him get on, and they traveled two more days to this village.

In the dream the horse turned to Standing on the Mountain, and said, “I will be leaving soon”. The dream ended and Standing on the Mountain bolted straight up, in a cold sweat.

Note: Part Two of Thunder Speaking will be posted tomorrow.

Gypsy Vanner

Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

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Native American Men

Chief Little Head - Crow - 1880's from Ebay
Chief Little Head – Crow – 1880’s from Ebay

So what do you do when there is no more hunting? How do you provide for your family? These are just some of the issues faced by the Native American men, of the past. When I see these photographs though, I see amazing inner strength! These men teach me and inspire me. They tell me that no matter what issue I am facing, nothing can change who I am! Internally I am to keep fighting! What ever you may face – never give up.

Ground Spider - Oglala Lakota - 1899
Ground Spider – Oglala Lakota – 1899
Chief Wolf Robe - Unk Nation - 1898
Chief Wolf Robe – Unk Nation – 1898

Chief Long Feather - Blackfoot
Chief Long Feather – Blackfoot
Red Shirt - Oglala Lakota
Red Shirt – Oglala Lakota

Naiche - Chiricahua Apache - Youngest Son of Cochise
Naiche – Chiricahua Apache – Youngest Son of Cochise

Joseph Two Bulls - Dakota - 1900
Joseph Two Bulls – Dakota – 1900

Medicine Crow - c 1880
Medicine Crow – c 1880
Fool Bull - Lakota
Fool Bull – Lakota

Warriors
Warriors

Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

Native American Women

Mourning Dove - First Native American Published Author
Mourning Dove – First Native American Published Author

When I look at old photographs of Native Americans I am struck by their inner strength. That is true of both men and women. Considering that many of these photographs are more than 100 years old, I can’t help but think of the history and all their people went through. Look at their faces. When I see them I see people of incredible strength in spite of adversity, and with the women I see beauty and strength at the same time! I believe it has to do with their culture. Next time I will post the men.

I would also like to wish every one of you a blessed holiday season and — peace!

 

Amie Kiawan - Kiowa Photograph 1890 - 1895
Amie Kiawan – Kiowa Photograph 1890 – 1895
Unknown Mother and Child
Unknown Mother and Child

 

 

 

 

 

 

Te Ata - Chickasaw Storyteller
Te Ata – Chickasaw Storyteller
Tsianina Redfeather Blackstone - Cherokee - Singer
Tsianina Redfeather Blackstone – Cherokee – Singer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unkown Bride - Early 1900's
Unkown Bride – Early 1900’s

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kiowa Women
Kiowa Women

 

 

Lakota Woman
Lakota Woman

 

Audrey - Nakoda - from Montana State Univ. Library
Audrey – Nakoda – from Montana State Univ. Library

 

Unknown Mother and Child
Unknown Mother and Child

 

 Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

The Stranger – Part II

by R. Tom Gilleon
by R. Tom Gilleon

Microfiction

The snow stopped long before dawn, never reaching very far above a man’s ankle. After sunrise the hunting party returned with a huge amount of food for the winter, the village was a buzz with activity, and with news about the stranger. With the buffalo, and the elk, the people knew they were well supplied, and they were happy.

When he woke up he did not care whether he lived or died. This was the end of his journey, either way. He had seen too much to go any further. If they killed him, then so be it. He sat up and looked around the buffalo lodge, and noticed he was alone.

He was surprised at how warm and comfortable it was. There were pelts and hides of every kind, and the buffalo blankets were especially warm. The lodge was stronger than he thought, and far different from his own home, or what used to be his home. A shot of pain came from his arm and went through the rest of his body. Before passing out again he noticed how well he had been cared for.

The next thing he knew his head was being lifted up and something warm was being pressed to his lips. It had a strong smell of herbs. When he opened his eyes he saw that it was the old woman, so he drank. It gave him strength and gradually took away some of the pain. He sat up and looked at her closely. She had a lot of wrinkles, but there was a light coming from her face, he was sure of it.

After a while they began to try to talk with each other, making signs, sounds, and drawing pictures on the floor of the lodge. It took a long time to just find out each other’s name. She noticed his language was similar to water in a stream, flowing over rocks. He figured out she was Cricket in the Field, he wasn’t sure about the last part though. When he tried to tell her his name, he made a lot noises and felt foolish, but he kept trying. She understood the first part, Thunder…., but the second part was harder. Finally he moved his lips without saying anything, and the thought dawned on her – Speaking…. It was Thunder Speaking.

Over the next three days he was visited by different people, including a very tall man, whose name he understood to be, Standing on the Mountain. He also came to understand that he was their spiritual leader. He liked the man and they spoke freely, sort of, with making signs. Cricket in the Field also met with him each day and they were busy trying to learn each other’s language. He felt uneasy about what he understood regarding her name so he asked her about it. She explained it wasn’t just a field, it was a particular kind of field where animals graze. He was from the forest near the coast, but he did notice the grasses here and the animals. Finally he caught it. It was a meadow.

A strange thing took place as they were talking. Cricket in the Meadow, realized she really liked the man, and she thought about her son who had died at the age seven. She was happy and sad at the same time. An image of Lone Horse appeared out of the corner of her right eye. She said nothing but felt his presence. He moved very close to her, and whispered in her ear, “this man will be your son”. Chills ran up and down her spine. She closed her eyes and tears streamed down her face.

Thunder Speaking saw the whole thing, including the man dressed in light. He was not scared, but he knew this was a special woman, and this place was a special place.

Paint Running

Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

Mountains

River 1

Let’s go back to the mountains,

even if it’s for a short time,

I need to have my mind and soul restored,

we can hold hands,

and have the sun warm our faces,

maybe we could sprout some wings,

and go far, far beyond,

the problems of this world.

But hold on to me,

once I’m soaring again,

I may not want to come back down,

you and I

wing to wing,

flying.

 Osprey Portrait

Poetry © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

The Stranger

Yakima Man by Edward S. Curtis 1910

Microfiction

He was the strangest man they had ever seen. No one knew how he got there, or where he had come from. He was just there, sitting on his horse not moving. It was a black and white horse, a stallion filled with spirit, and that is how they noticed him at the western part of the village, in between two lodges. The horse had snorted, and stomped at the ground with his right hoof. The village came to a stop and just stared at the man.

Most of the men were away, on a buffalo hunt, but Whirlwind had been left in charge. No one saw Whirlwind though. Was he with the horses? His son Two Wolves was the only one that moved, silently, towards the man, bow and arrow pointing down. The man did not move. Was he dead?

Cricket in the Meadow looked at the man’s clothing, and she thought how strange, that his clothing was red. Was it from a different animal? Was it dyed? She could not tell. She had seen sea shells though before, once when she was a child. This man’s clothing was decorated with sea shells, which meant he had travelled very far, and he was from a people they did not know. Then she noticed his arm.

Instantly, she motioned to Two Wolves to stop, with a wave of her arm, which he saw clearly. No one moved. She whispered, “His arm is broken”. In fact, his left arm looked badly mangled. The man began to sway, and several people moved closer, expecting him to fall. He did fall to his left, into the arms of Whirlwind, who had come back unnoticed, and several women.

Several hours later he was in a lodge, and still in the capable hands of Cricket in the Meadow, Raven, and several other women. Whirlwind was there too in case the man woke up. It was clear to everyone that the man had fought a pack of wolves. He had several bites to his legs and one on his right arm. They also believed that he had fallen a great distance during the fight, which broke his arm.

Whirlwind mentioned that he thought the man’s horse had saved his life. He was convinced that the horse brought the man here, because of his injuries. Maybe the horse smelled the village fires burning, and headed this way. None of the people could capture the horse today. After the man had fallen, he ran, and was too fast for anyone, even on horseback. The horse not only had a strong spirit, he had strong medicine.

The difficult part of helping the man was his arm. They did the best they could in setting it with rawhide. Cricket in the Meadow mentioned that it may not heal. It was warm in the lodge, and after they finished, she stepped out for some fresh air.

It was night, but there was a full moon, and a light snow was beginning to fall. From looking at the sky she thought there would only be a little this time, and that the heavy snows would come later. Where was this man from and why was he here by himself? She did not know, but she would be glad when the hunting party returned.

 

Paint

Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree

The Gradual Healing of Cricket in the Meadow

Lodge in the Valley

Microfiction

Note: This is the continuing fictitious story of a group of people living in 1700’s Canada, between the prairie and the mountains. They include Two Wolves, Song Bird, Hawk in the Sky, and his wife Red Wing, as well as others. Their spiritual leader is Standing on the Mountain. In this segment, Cricket in the Meadow is mourning the loss of her husband, Lone Horse.

She could feel his presence next to her, on most days. Occasionally she could see him, or what looked like him, out of the corner of her eye. He looked so young now. She would turn to look, and he would be gone. Was he playing tricks on her? She decided no, he had had a sense of humor, but he would not do anything to hurt her. One time, alone in their lodge, this happened and she said out loud, “I know you are here, with me”. Tears filled her eyes. It was a comfort really, to feel him close. She slept good that night.

A month later she was outside softening some elk hides, so they could be made into clothing. Elk hides were larger and thicker than the ones from deer, and they made excellent clothing for the colder weather. She found herself singing the mourning song again, the one taught to her from her Grandmother, so many years ago. The weather was getting colder, and she was glad she had accepted the offer to live with Spotted Bull, and Running Doe, and their children. She could be of help to them, and they would help to keep her warm.

Running Doe was expecting another child, and she would be another set of hands for her. Cricket in the Meadow was also an excellent midwife, and had helped many of the women to deliver children safely. Her experienced hands and knowledge meant the people trusted her with this important job. Her soft voice and love in the midst of the birth, seemed to speak that the Creator was right there with them.

And then the time did come for Running Doe to deliver. They were all asleep until a shriek of pain came from Running Doe. They knew instantly what it was about, panic struck the lodge hard, the children were crying, Spotted Bull stood up and hit his head on a lodge pole, knocking over his weapons, and then fell to the ground. It was chaos, until the calm and loving voice of Cricket in the Meadow brought peace and order.

She saw the image again of her husband, Lone Horse, out of the corner of her eye. He was smiling at her. She did not turn to look at him, for fear he might vanish again. But she did smile in return, and peace filled her. That night a beautiful baby girl was born into the hands of Cricket in the Meadow. She knew deep within, that is was good to be alive.

 

from the Native American Encyclopedia
from the Native American Encyclopedia

 

Writing © Copyright 2014, nicodemasplusthree