I wrote this yesterday in response to the events that happened over the weekend in North Dakota against the water protectors. It was a force of prayer.
Nahasdzáán Nihimá, Mother Earth
She cares for us. She protects us. She provides for us.
The water is her blood. The air is her breath. The trees are her hands.
She reaches and comforts us all day and every day. She is here and everywhere.
Shitaa’ Yádilłdił, Father Sky
He watches from above,
Out of Mother’s reach.
In the morning he greets us, coaxing us out of bed with the help of Jóhonaa’éí, The Sun.
Shitaa’ Yádilłdił, he waits and he lingers each evening,
Leaving, Tł’éhonaa’éí, The Moon, to watch and to guide us in his absence.
Good night, he says and Tł’éhonaa’éí remains.
She greets us with her blessing each night. Never permitting us into the total darkness.
Today it rains. It rains heavily and continuously. I reach towards Father.
I ask what is wrong? He shakes his head in anger. Thunder booms in the distance.
Mother is bleeding. Her skin torn open for the profit of a dollar.
Her insides are poison. Hidden and kept away from us.
Tó éí ííná át’é, Water is Life, she screams. My ancestors scream. I scream.
I watch from afar on a tiny 15-inch computer screen
The violence that ensued against the protectors.
Child against child.
My mind pounds against my body. Out of balance. Out of sync.
My spirit is hurting. Filled with Nihimá’s pain.
And all I want is freedom.
Freedom from this pain.
Freedom from these emotions that are sitting and broiling inside of me.
They are not just my own.
Dadílzinii jidísin, respect the sacred, they told me.
We made Father cry.
He can’t do anything but cry. His tears are a calling.
Within each droplet is the strength that I need. To prompt and to push me.
Tó éí ííná át’é, he reminds us.
Nahasdzáán Nihimá reaches towards us.
Her caretakers. Her protectors. Her children.
We must stand against our siblings. We must defend our mother. We must pray for each other.
Shitaa’ Yádilłdił. Jóhonaa’éí. Tł’éhonaa’éí. Diyin Dine’é, Holy People, of this land and my land. I pray to you. I ask of you. I call to you.
Protect the water protectors.
Lend them my strength. Surround them with love.
May they heal and may they continue.
Calm our fellow siblings in uniforms.
Still their anger. Lessen their trauma.
Quell their greedy ancestors.
Reconceive their broken connection
Nahasdzáán Nihimá needs us now more than ever.
For water. For life. For us.