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Skid marks…

July 3, 2010

An English word I admire is “reclaim”…

It means “to bring back, to return to a proper course”…

When I learned Objibway I reclaimed a huge part of myself…

It wasn’t lost, I had always owned it;

it was just adrift on the great sea of influence that is the modern world…

Like a mariner lost upon foreign seas,

I sought a friendly shore to step out on so I could walk again…

My language became that shore…

For me, peendigaen, “Come in”,

meant I could express myself as who I was created to be…

That’s what this journey is all about—

to learn to express yourself as whom you are created to be…

You don’t need to be a native person to understand that…

— in One Native Life by Richard Wagamese

Starshine called me tonight after returning from a father-daughter camping trip on Mystic Beach…

She said it was so much better than she thought it would be,

and she really loves camping because it is so relaxing…

And she realized how much she loves her sister…

I hardly thought about her while I was away,

but when we got to Granny’s and she jumped up into my arms,

I felt how much I love her…

I never felt that way about my sister…

I felt wholly responsible for her,

but I also spent time working out a plan for dispatch…

July 1st I was riding around the Stanley Park seawall,

and I had to slam the brakes on my ten speed in front of the Fish House,

otherwise I would have driven right over Martin Sheen…

Holy Hannah,

what is the world coming to???

Today I was restless,

and wondering…

So I stayed home and made some jelly…

Raspberry and orange hot pepper with cranberries,

and strawberry-rhubarb conserve with lime and ginger…

Perfect for home-made bannock…

I loved making bannock as a little girl…

But I didn’t learn how from an elder…

I was taught at school as part of the grade four curriculum,

and this knowledge stayed with me,

or reminded me of what I already knew,

locked up inside…

But I haven’t done it for awhile…

So now with the right condiments,

the time is nigh,

and I’m coming home…

Tonight I went for a roller-blade,

five kilometers deep into the Seymour River valley,

and then walked my usual loop down to and along the river…

There was no one else there except for the birds,

and the smell of the river which filled me,

with memories of my fish body…

On the drive back to town I saw a barred owl,

sitting in a tree right by the side of the road…

Barred owls are the champion vocalists among their species,

and although they appear to be threatening,

they are quite harmless…

I stopped my car,

and rolled down my window to feel its medicine…

A subtle wave of it washed over me,

fleshing out corners of prophecy and wisdom…

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