The Last Knight

She but wrapped, tightly to branches strong
Damsel held pressed in the willow’s arms
And silver knight come to protect
Death of the tree by sword and axe

And where this savior, this knight of old
Doth sleep then know a willow grows
Across these lands, this journey so long
At every stop, a new weeping stand

Strong as a mast, when he was young
But life has worn, threadbare and thin
And arrogance replaced, an outlook once bright
The willow cries again, hope gone, dark night

What of tomorrow, new generations draw close
Who to save the damsels, journeys yet to come
I see no other in the wings, none waiting to continue
When this, the last silver knight of old

Has traveled his path to the end……

Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre December 21st, 2007

What Will Come

What Will Come?

How will my grand-daughter live?
Will she live a better life than now?
What world awaits her questing path?
Will she still hear the songs that I now sing?
Will she know the world we now share?
Will she remember the times before?
Will she heed the wisdom of her ancestors?
These questions bring doubt and pain deep inside.

Grandfather’s storied history of our ancestors and their lore.
Of my people, standing tall and proud of who they are.
Tales of how we came to be a part of this land.
Tales of the pain, tears, struggles and fears.
Of journeys built of hopes and dreams.
Will she remember?

Spirit driven, my people have always shared our food and land.
We worked for hope and peace, sharing what we had, our spirit and love.
Others came and abused our gifts.
They made to shame us, hurt us, and remove us from the land.
We learned to hide our ways, hide to keep from being hurt even more.
Avoiding being hurt and yet holding on to the truths we knew.

I listen to the wind and Grandfather tells me to be proud and hold my head up high.
Pride in knowing truth, living with beauty, honor, and with love and tolerance.
Pride in knowing I have taught my grand-daughter to listen.
Comfort in how she holds firmly to Spirit, Life, and Earth.
I have helped guide her path to a life full of beauty, happiness, and love.
Her future journey filled with love, respect, and tolerance.

And now I know.
My dreams will live on forever as my great grand-children are born,
The world they journey through will be better than the one now.
And they will also know the joys of all of creation, all of life.
And they will have beads and feathers to be proudly worn.

Listen closely and hear my song on the winds.
My song of life and love.
And if you listen well, over the distance you will hear my grand-father’s contented sigh.
He smiles down upon us his grand-children and this, our wonderful world.
The medicine circle is complete,
And the great wheel turns yet again…

Author: Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre Nov. 5th, 2006

To Remember

This night we sing the old songs
And with this we remember
Remember all the things we have lost
Remember all of the things we need so much
The flute rings with the sounds of the wind
Much as the transient passing of the birds in the sky
The drums bring the sounds of distant thunder
Much as the Buffalo rolling across the prairie
The voices blend together in the song
And the wafting smoke drifts up from the campfire
This gathering is good

The trek to this place was long
This place where the grass is green, the water cool
Father Sun now gazes through the corn tassel
An Eagle’s call rings out across the evening sky
My eyes close and I listen to the breeze
This gentle wind moving over the hill
Bathing me with both peace and warmth to my spirit
And bringing the gentle whisperings the old ones
Faces of old friends drift past me in the gathering darkness
And moving among them the pale spirit images of my ancestors
This gathering is good

I move to stand before the mountain
My gaze caught by the images scratched into the old stone
Images colored by soot and dyes
The old ones have left this faded record
This record left to be read and remembered
Read and remembered by the people to come after
I see my own fingers reaching out
I see them gently tracing the curves and lines
Feel the need fill me, the need to know
To know the painter, know the story
The need is good

The night swirls, the sounds fade
My fingers are stained
Stained by the colors of fresh paint
Paints prepared from the plants and the earth
I feel beside me a man stands
A tall, bronze, and bare-chested man
Painting this year’s story upon the mountain
The images growing in the evening sky
These once old and faded images, now fresh and new
The meaning, once forgotten, now clear and important
Understanding is good

The people move around me
People clothed in woven fiber, animal skins, and the feathers of Eagle
My hand holds a flint point
The point is thin and finely made, ready for hafting
Its keen edge surprising, the balance good
The color of the stone shows it came from far away
My eyes close again, remembering the old ones now
The stone warms my hand as I remember my ancestors
My grandfather, with his dark eyes full of experience and wisdom
He guides my hand across the point saying,
“It is not difficult to make, I will teach you”
The memories are good

My grandmother smiles at me
“Come sit by our fire, share our food
It is a good life we have here, we have much”
I feel the need, the need to learn much
To smell the grass and trees, the water and smoke,
Hear the children, animals, insects, and wind,
Feel with more than touch
See with more than eyes
Learn and understand with my mind and heart
I begin to know
Knowing is good

But I need to know more
Need to know all
“We will teach you, but that is enough for now.
It is better to fully understand a few words, than to
Half understand many” the old ones whisper
My need is strong, but I respect the ancients
“May I come to your fire again?
I will bring a story from tomorrow.
Will you tell me, remind me, bring me those things forgotten?”
“You are welcome to our fire, welcome to share our wisdom my son”
The future is good

And a new day begins
And my fingers are stained
Stained by the colors of fresh paints
Paints prepared from the plants and the earth.
And again beside me stands a man,
Tall, bronze, and bare-chested,
Painting this year’s story upon the mountain.
I gaze at some of the old images,
Remembering the voice of my grandfather
Telling the tales and legends of long ago.
I give the painter another bowl, another color.
The vision is good.

And the end of the chant sounds.
The songs quiet and die,
I open my eyes and rise.
Tomorrow I will dance again
Wearing the white buffalo pouch
Inherited from my great-grandfather,
Made by his great-grandmother.
The sounds of the one fill me,
The night owl calls, the wind whispers,
The time to dream comes.
Dreaming is good

Below is our village,
The smoke of the fire and the sounds of life drift up over the hill
All rising on the wind, rising to the Great Spirit.
The People prepare for the celebration of harvest,
So thankful for Mother Earth and Father Sun,
So thankful for full bellies and children who laugh,
So thankful for the gathering, the song, and the dance.
The drawing is finished, another year recorded
We silently gather the brushes and paints,
Then together start down the trail,
The new day is good

I stop and turn to look at the mountain once again
To look at the many drawings on this monument,
The great history of the People in this sacred place.
The man turns his head and speaks,
His eyes fall on me as one well trusted,
His voice rings familiar and reassuring,
“Are you ready, my brother? “
I nod and we turn again to the trail.
The wind stirs my hair, awakens my soul
The sound of the voices lingering in my mind,
The bond is good.

And so the wheel turns
I gaze at the stone wall before me
At ancient paintings and petroglyphs.
The watchful spirits of my relatives surround me.
I am honored to be one in a long line
A line reaching from ancient past to distant future.
The wind stirs again,
Bringing the smell of wood smoke
And the voices of family and friends.
I remember and I understand;
Tonight I live again.
And Life is good…

Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre July 17th, 2006

Find It Within

See the life all around you
See that part you hold in yourself that is in all these others
The four legged, the flyers, the crawlers, two legged, and all
Know that all life comes from the same source
All life holds value to their journey, whether short or long, hard or easy

Learn to know that all life trembles before violence
All fear death, all love life.
All have dreams and passions
All have loves and fears
All crave happiness and contentment

And so in seeing yourself in others,
Then whom can you hurt?
What harm can you do?
For in truly knowing of your part in others,
How can you harm them without harming yourself?

Know that you who seek your own happiness from without
Seeking your answer by hurting those others who seek their own happiness,
Will be doomed to never find happiness for you.
For your brother is alike to you,
He may look different, believe differently, talk differently,
Yet he simply wants to be happy.
Never harm him, for in harming him, you harm yourself so much more

Seek for real happiness within yourself
Look deep within to know your own connection to Spirit
You own strengths and weaknesses
Your own wants and needs
In this way you too will find happiness.
Find it In this life.

And after you leave this life, to return home…

Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre, August 19, 2007

Eagle Dream

Drifting high on the swirling currents
I feel my chest muscles rippling
Sweeping wings carriy me aloft
Blood pumping through massive arteries
Pulling oxygen gleaned from rarefied air by powerful lungs
A furnace, burning with power…
An engine of infinite force and complexity
Man, mount, strangely something much more than all
The great Eagle soaring effortlessly through this day

Minor alterations, muscles tensed, sinews relaxed
A glance, subtle movements…and the flight changes
Almost randomly or at a whim, entire worlds slide by
Realities distort as I plummet nearly to destruction
Only to scream in joyous ecstasy and climb back to the heights
Simply to do it all over again

It is chaos unleashed to any observing
But actually tightly, precisely controlled
A dance of intricate design, influenced only by the dancer
Following in a flowing passionate dance
Hand in hand with the stars above

And then there’s the music…

The dance is accompanied by essince
Deep, glorious, intricate harmonies
Emanating from the power of the universe itself…
Perhaps it comes from deep in my soul
There is very little difference between them at the moment.

Overwhelmed with the beauty and passion of it
Caught up in the gestalt, so absorbed by the music
I didn’t understand the first ice-cold flash of pain
Threatening to spin me into unconsciousness, blinding
Happening so fast I’m not sure if it’s really even there
A second slashing white-hot agony leaves absolutely no doubt

Drifting high on the swirling currents
I feel my chest muscles rippling
Sweeping wings carriy me aloft
Blood pumping through massive arteries
Pulling oxygen gleaned from rarefied air by powerful lungs
A furnace, burning with power…
An engine of infinite force and complexity
Man, mount, strangely something much more than all
The Iron Eagle soaring effortlessly through the night.

Minor alterations, muscles tensed, sinews relaxed
A glance, subtle movements…and the flight changes
Almost randomly or at a whim, entire worlds slide by
Realities distort as I plummet nearly to destruction
Only to scream in joyous ecstasy and climb back to the heights
Simply to do it all over again

It is chaos unleashed to any observing
But actually tightly, precisely controlled
A dance of intricate design, influenced only by the dancer
Following in a flowing passionate dance
Hand in hand with the stars above

And then there’s the music…

Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre July 3rd, 1998

A Time for Growth

Daylight fades, and the darkness of night draws nearer
The damp evening air touches the hearts of the people
The old one notices, remembering living the old ways
The old ways, living in peace with all around them
Living in peace with each other, the animals, and the Earth Mother
The old one living now in fear
Fear that his children have turned from the source
Fear of his grand-children’s greed, abuses, and loss
Fear for his dying nation, his dying world

Lost are the voices of drum and flute
The lessons that taught us tolerance and respect
Of taking only what we need, and giving thanks for all we have
Of living with pride, honor, and concern for all life
We no longer hear the old sounds that haunted the night
Gone are the Spirits of the Earth Mother
Gone are the blessings of Spirit
The old one morns the loss of the night sounds of life
Crickets silent, the wind no longer whispering its secrets through the night
The wind bringing only the sound of Earth Mother groaning in her agony and pain
Reliving the memories of distant past

The full moon slowly rises in the night sky
Illuminating the burned out, trash pilled landscape around the camp
The old ones tears drip freely on the barren dusty ground
Tears carrying the thoughts of what used to be
And the thoughts continue flowing
Flowing like water in the stream of never lingering moments
Moments from a past when peace and harmony ruled among the nations.
A time when Spirit was strong in the people
When all people knew the importance of all things
Tears carrying memories of how right it used to be
And with the tears, the last hope drains from the old ones heart.

Spirit feels the wet tears flowing across the Earth Mother
He hears the painful thoughts contained within them
Senses the hopelessness and agony of the old one

He speaks:

“My child, why do you stand before me crying for the future?
Why do you turn from what has been given?
Away from the teachings you know so well
Where has your heart gone?

The old one responds:

“Oh Great Spirit, your children have lost your truths.
They now forsake all the gifts you give them
They do not hear the truth of the lessons we offer
They do not heed the guidance laid before them
Others have come from a far away land
They have taken our culture and knowledge away from us
They have driven our children only to know their foreign ways
The ways of greed and abuse, of hate and anger

And our children embrace these new ways
They hold hate close to their hearts, pushing away love and tolerance
They judge any but themselves, blaming the troubles of the world on the others
Their lives are consumed by the need to take back their lands
To exact revenge from evils done in the past
Dark emotions fueled by the wrongs done to their ancestors
A daily existence focused only on pain and loss
They forsake your truths, refuse to know the real importance of life

And I do not know what to do, what to say
My hope is gone, lost to the darkness that now fills my peoples lives”

And Great Spirit spoke again:

“My child, you have forgotten the stories you know so well.
You have forgotten the history of my children,
Hear me well,

For all of times past, this has been the hard way of my children
From the epoch of the great journey across the ice, it was so
As they learned of the truths I offer, learned to live as they should
Learned their place in the world, to value peace, respect, and harmony,
To love freely and rejoice in all of life’s wonders

Even their lives grew and their places within the great circle became complete
They began to share these truths with others
Began to show the others the joy brought by the truth
And yet the others were angered at these truths
The others were filled with jealousy and hatred for what they could see, yet lacked
What they could not or would not understand
For the real truth threatened their power
Challenged their greed
Made their life a farce, baseless in its need

So war came to my children
My children were pushed every further from their homelands
Ever further across the waste of ice and cold
Until, at long last, pushed to these very lands here

And still the others followed
For they could not allow the real truths to change their lives
Could not give up what they held so dear
The things they gathered, lands they held
Their beliefs fashioned to uphold the greed and desire in their souls
They held themselves as special, better than and outside of existence
So much more important than all of the rest of life

A sad time
Tribe against tribe
Warrior against warrior
Brother against brother
Man against all of nature
It has continued for ages long forgotten
A great circle of learning, loosing, and waste
The never-ending battle of light against dark”

The old ones painful wailing continued to flow
A muddy river of tears winding across the muddy ground

“Oh Great Spirit!
Your truth does little to ease my heart
You tell of a long history of turmoil and darkness
Of my people lost for all of time
Never finding peace, never knowing love
Where is the hope I can hold to?
Where is the answer to the questions I hold?
Forgive my ignorance Great Spirit
Forgive my questioning
But I know not what to do
I know not how to help my people.
I know not how to regain hope”

“Be at ease my child, for the answer is within you
Settle your tired and aching heart
Look within, hold to that in you that connects with me
Hold to me and find the answers you seek
Hear my words:

You have within you all you seek
It is for you to help lead your people to the life they need
To help them find the peace and love I intended
Teach them of their place in this world
Of the balance of living with all existence
Of working toward the betterment of life
Rather than fighting against the small darkness bumping at the light

Teach them the importance of life
Of the value in tolerance and acceptance
Tolerance of views differing from their own
Acceptance of the rights of all the different forms of life

Teach them of balance
Of the balance of all things
Of using only what they truly need
Of being thankful of gifts given,
Teach them of the equality of life

Show them their place in all of existence
I hold no one part of all as above any other.
Whether trees, plants, animals, or humans
I hold not one as more than another
All are of equal importance to me
All are loved and cared for by me

Teach them these simple truths
And bid them live each day within my light and love
Show them with your life how theirs can and should be.”

The old ones tears dry and clear.
In his eyes you can see the rebirth of hope
The return of truth fills his soul
Love and peace glows across his lined old face.

“It will be as you say Great Spirit
Hope shines within me once again
I will return to living life as should be
I will share all of your truths with my people
And they will learn from my words
And pass on what they learn to their children and grand-children

The future will be as bright and promising as any vision can be
And a life of Peace and Happiness will be for all of existence
As it was intended
As it was at one time
And as it will be now again

Thank you once again Great Spirit for all you gifts I’ve received
Thank you for the wonders I so enjoy as I more through this astounding land
Thank you for the love and joy that fills my heart”

And the old one walks on to complete his path
The sky clear blue once more
The bright horizon hinting of better things to come.

Author: Steve ‘Easy’ Whitacre (WolfFliesWithRaven) Nov. 8th, 2006