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Spirit Who Divides Night From Day

"When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced. Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice." ~ Cherokee Expression

While I was constructing this work, I thought about the Ghost Dancers who made their last stand so long ago in the cold of winter. After many battles and broken treaties, the many nations of Native Americans had been driven like herds from their own sacred lands to reservations where they could not hunt, could not grow or gather food, could not survive without supplies from the White Man. They had seen everything they held sacred, everything that had given them joy, every freedom which they had expected their children to inherit, disappear from the world. All that was familiar and theirs was being taken over or destroyed by the Blue Coats and the white settlers and the buffalo hunters. The people despaired as so many died and they could not win their freedom. The old days would never come again. Then they began to look for escape through the Ghost Dance, praying to pass out of this world of suffering and oppression. The Ghost Dancers so unnerved the White Man that the practice was forbidden. But the dancers continued, their spirits knowing no other way to find release, and they continued crying out to their Great Spirit to take them. At the end, the Blue Coats came to Wounded Knee and ran the Ghost Dancers down, silencing their drums and song, stilling their dance forever.

"What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset." ~ Crowfoot, Blackfoot warrior and orator

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