The Braided River

33. All This Rich Remembering (ninth prayer bone)

ALL THIS RICH REMEMBERING (ninth prayer bone) We have always known there is a double edge to our sacred veils. The veils that hide us safely can also be the veils that weigh heavily upon our souls. The veils that gave us anonymity are also the veils that might take away our strength. The veils […]

32. Smoke Prayer (ninth prayer bone)

SMOKE PRAYER (ninth prayer bone) At this fire we offer prayers to weave our forgotten ancestors back into remembering life. We offer our prayer bone to the life force that is anchored deep within the land, and with ritual we bind it to the trails of the long dead. Our ancient people dwell far inside […]

31. She Had Remembered Me (ninth prayer bone)

SHE HAD REMEMBERED ME (eighth prayer bone) My hands were already old when I was young. As a girl I walked around with crone fingers, and grandmother knuckles that cracked and bled whenever the weather was cold. There were so many lines carved into my palm that any reputable sayer of sooth would certainly have […]

30. Remembering (ninth prayer bone)

REMEMBERING (ninth prayer bone) We have returned to the hearth fire at the centre of this dreaming house where now we lay the final prayer bone; it is beautifully wrapped with remembering, KOMMANO. This prayer is like a complex tapestry, filled with colour and design, with holes in the weft through which another tapestry may […]

29. When Paint is Prayer (eighth prayer bone)

WHEN PAINT IS PRAYER (eighth prayer bone) Years ago I had a dream in which my mother was filling a tray with water in order to make breast-shaped ice. I had fallen asleep late one night while I was painting. The painting was huge, eight feet tall, and the physical ritual of continually climbing onto […]

28. A Whispering Prayer (eighth prayer bone)

A WHISPERING PRAYER (eighth prayer bone) We made rattles with which to play the silence of the incubation and those whispers that we could hear within the winter land. With deer hide gathered from those whispering creatures, we cut the shapes and sewed them together with strong thread. The rattle bowls were packed tightly with […]