Theresa

11 Apr

Theresa

I saw her one night during a fitful wink of slumber,
that coy maiden who eludes me during waking hours.
She wore a blanket colored with pollen and treaty
promises and centered among them stood
Changing Woman with turquoise. They faded in and out
as I wavered, walking through dreamscapes, tossing and turning about.

Seems like I remember her faint drum and chorus:
We are-
Idle-
No More.

Then in another moment suspended between now and later,
between inertia and electricity, I saw this mysterious figure again.
This time she was clothed again in a blanket but only herds of white buffalo
ran above its hem and centered on her back stood White Buffalo Calf Woman,
dancing in place, singing a song. Her expression was resolved;
her mantra cannot be ignored.

I’m certain I heard her drum and chorus:
We are-
Idle-
No More.

Weeks went by and she never visited. I dreamt hard, sure to
avoid the shallow waters of sleep but she was nowhere to be found.
I prayed with cedar and sage and found no clarity, had no vision.
These trickster lines became seamless and invisible; they escaped me.
It’s odd though, in the slippery moment we forget, a familiar
shiny shard glimmers in the sand.

When I saw her a third time, her broad shoulders were shrouded with a shawl
bearing Mary Brave Bird’s profile and power. To her breast she held a baby
she named Himak Nittak* and around her ankles shook turtle shells and
they found today a good day to sing a good song.

I am most confident in their drum and chorus,
We are-
Idle-
No More.

And this is how the lines appeared.

*Today

Copyright Asani Charles 3/12/13

Audio file of “Theresa”

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